The Russian Orthodox Cathedral of Saint-Nicholas
The russian church in Nice was built in 1903, designed by architect Mikhail Preobrazhensky of St. Petersburg, and was erected to accommodate the growing Russian population who had taken up residence on the south coast in the late 1800s.
A much smaller Russian church was first built at 6 rue Longchamp, Saint-Nicholas and Saint-Alexandra in 1859, but it turned out to be too small to handle the increasing Russian presence in Nice. This church still exists and is well worth a visit.
The name of the Cathedral of Saint-Nicholas is attributed to the Russian Emperor Nicholas II, who together with his mother the Empress Maria Feodorovna paid for the construction of the church.
The land on which the church was built, the former Bermond Park, was owned by Emperor Nicholas himself, and he donated it to the building.
The five colored domes
The cathedral consists of five beautiful colored domes, among which the largest symbolizes Christ and the four smaller ones symbolize the four evangelists; Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The church has been classified as a historical monument since 1987.
Large on the outside – small on the inside
The magnificent exterior gives the visitor expectations of a similar interior, but they will be a bit disappointed. However, this is not very characteristic of this particular church, as churches in Russia are also built this way.
Inside you can experience decorations from the La Belle Époque period with special floral motifs. The original idea was to paint a series of frescoes, but that would have killed the budget.
There is also a large and beautiful picture wall with icons, iconostasis, which was made in Russia.
By Tommy Sverre – 2022
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