Nikolskaya Tower

Nikolskaya Tower is a tower with a through-passage on the eastern wall of the Moscow Kremlin, which overlooks the Red Square not far from the State Historical Museum

Nikolskaya Tower
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The Nikolskaya Tower was built in 1491 by an Italian architect Pietro Antonio Solari.

Nikolskaya Tower
pinterest button Nikolskaya Tower Sergius, GNU 1.2

It was named after Nikolaevsky (Nikolsky) Greek Monastery, which is no longer there.

Nikolsky gates of the Kremlin and Aleviz moat, 1800's
pinterest button Nikolsky gates of the Kremlin and Aleviz moat, 1800's Ф. Я. Алексеев, ученики, Public Domain

In 1806, the tower was rebuilt in the neo-Gothic style by an architect Luigi Rusca.

St. Nicholas Tower of the Moscow Kremlin, destroyed by French troops. Moscow, October 11, 1812.
pinterest button St. Nicholas Tower of the Moscow Kremlin, destroyed by French troops. Moscow, October 11, 1812. Д.М. Струков, CC BY-SA 3.0

In 1812, the top of the tower was blown up by the retreating French army.

Nikolskaya Tower in 1883
pinterest button Nikolskaya Tower in 1883 Найдёнов Н.А., Public Domain

It was restored in 1816 by an architect Osip Bove.

Prayer at Nicholas Gate of Moscow Kremlin. Above the gate - the fresco of St. Nicholas, 22 May 1918
pinterest button Prayer at Nicholas Gate of Moscow Kremlin. Above the gate — the fresco of St. Nicholas, 22 May 1918 неизвестен, Public Domain

The Nikolskaya Tower was once again severely damaged by the artillery fire in October 1917 and was later restored by an architect Nikolai Markovnikov.

Nikolskaya Tower
pinterest button Nikolskaya Tower EjeVichka, CC BY-SA 3.0

In 1935, the Soviets installed a red star on top of the tower. Its current height with the star is 70.4 m.

Arsenal and Nikolskaya Tower in Moscow Kremlin
pinterest button Arsenal and Nikolskaya Tower in Moscow Kremlin Stan Shebs, GNU 1.2

The original icon of Saint Nicholas of Mozhaysk, placed above the entrance on Red Square had been plastered over by Soviet authorities and was uncovered and restored in 2010 — similar to what took place on the Spasskaya Tower.