Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Freestanding Column: Alexander Column - St. Petersburg, Russia

Interesting Places I've Photographed
Alexander Column
St. Petersburg, Russia
Topic: Freestanding Columns
Alexander Column
Palace Square
GPS: N59° 56.351; E030° 18.936

Quick Description: 

The Alexander Column is located in the center of Palace Square in St. Petersburg. Russia.

Long Description:

The Alexander Column was designed by architects Auguste de Montferrand and Antonio Adamini. Construction began in 1830 and the monument was unveiled on August 24, 1834. The column is named in honor of Czar Alexander I of Russia, who was the reigning monarch during the Napoleonic Wars when Napoleon's advance into Russia was repulsed by the Russian army.

The monument is 155.75' high and is the tallest freestanding column in the world. The red granite shaft of the monument is 83.5' high and about 11.5' in diameter. It is constructed from a single piece of granite that was quarried in Finland and moved 62 miles to St. Petersburg by barge. Weighing 600 tons, it is the fifth heaviest monolith ever moved using only manpower. The column is balanced on a pedestal that has four bronze bas-relief sculptures created by Giovanni Battista Scotti depicting military figures and symbols.

At the top of the column, and facing the Winter Palace, stands an angel sculpted by Boris Orlovsky. The angel has its wings outspread and its right arm and hand outstretched pointing to the sky. The angel's left hand is supporting the lower part of a large cross. A serpent coils itself around the base of the cross.

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