Velikii Ustiug

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This subcollection from the William C. Brumfield Collection -- Photographs of Russian Architecture contains photographs of the northern town of Velikii Ustiug, located at the confluence of the Sukhona and Iug Rivers to form the Northern Dvina River in Vologda oblast. This network of three navigable rivers spread throughout northern Russia in a major transportation route that attracted the earliest Russian settlers here, apparently by the middle of the 12th century. Ustiug's merchants and churches acquired wealth that created the town's 17th and 18th century brick churches. Foremost among them is the Cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God. The Dormition Cathedral is surrounded by six other churches to form an ensemble known as Cathedral Court and the adjacent Archbishop's Court. Together with the cathedral bell tower, they form the dominant feature in the town's landscape. The most remarkable example of the late baroque in Ustiug is contained at the Trinity-Gleden Monastery, on the opposite side of the Sukhona River at Gleden. The main church, dedicated to the Trinity, was built in the late 17th century. Many years later a new merchant donation enabled the construction and painting of a splendid iconostasis (1776 and 1784), whose exuberant carved figures in the baroque style reflect the town's ties with St. Petersburg. To the north of Gleden is the village of Dymkovo, with its well-preserved wooden houses and two churches--St. Sergius of Radonezh (1739-47) and the larger St. Dmitrii (1700-1709)--located on the right bank of the Sukhona opposite Cathedral Court.
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