Church of the Intercession on the Nerl in Bogolyubovo - Russia

Church of the Intercession on the Nerl in Bogolyubovo - Russia

Church of the Intercession on the Nerl in Bogolyubovo - Russia
Church of the Intercession on the Nerl in Bogolyubovo - Russia

Perhaps, in the whole world one cannot find such a light, bright and refined temple as the Church of the Intercession on the Nerl, which is 10 km from Vladimir. This is a white-stone masterpiece of old Russian architecture, an example of the architecture of the Vladimir-Suzdal school. The secret of its grace lies in the harmonious proportions and the perfect combination of the church with the landscape of the Russian plain. The temple is considered one of the most beautiful in Russia and is included in the register of world monuments by UNESCO, and the surrounding Bogolyubovsky meadow is recognized as a regional historical and landscape complex.

The low building symbolizes the aspiration upward, to God, and the road to the temple is a small pilgrimage. People walk to it through the meadows on foot from Bogolyubovo to touch the centuries-old history and light a candle.

A Bit of History

From the Life of Prince Andrei Bogolyubsky it is known that the temple was built in 1165, it served as a memorial to the prince's son - Izyaslav, who died in the war with the Volga Bulgars. Later, Prince Andrei established the feast of the Intercession of the Virgin in Russia and dedicated a church to him.

According to legend, white stones for the construction of the temple were brought from the defeated Bulgar principality.

What to Watch

The temple stands in a truly unique place: on the flooded Bogolyubsky meadow, in the bend of the Nerl River, on a man-made hill. Here you can feel cleanliness, high spirituality and inspiration, it is no coincidence that there are many artists near the church. White stone wall carvings in combination with vertical lines and a slight slope of the walls give the structure lightness and airiness.

From a small cross-domed building of the 12th century, a square skeleton-quadrangle and a head have survived, the rest of the parts were destroyed by time and rebuilt in the 19th century. The walls are strictly vertical, but due to the finely selected proportions, they seem to be slightly tilted, which makes the room seem taller. The interior of the church is more than modest: the frescoes were knocked down from the walls during the restoration work in 1877, but there is a small iconostasis with icons.

Outside, there are carved wall reliefs with biblical figures, birds, animals and masks. In the center is depicted King David reading psalms with his right hand raised in blessing, next to it is a lion, symbolizing princely power, and a dove, a sign of spirit and meekness.

Practical Information

Address: Bogolyubovo, Vokzalnaya, 10.

You can get from Vladimir by bus or train to the Bogolyubovo station. Then about 2 km on foot or in a horse-drawn carriage. Paid parking is available near the railway station, free - at the entrance to the Bogolyubsky monastery. The church is active, there is a candle shop. Opening hours: daily, from 8:00 to 18:00, admission is free.

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