Solemn Celebration Ceremony of 175th Anniversary of the Alexander Column
10 September 2009, a solemn celebration ceremony of 175th anniversary of the Alexander Column took place at Palace Square. The monument was created upon the project of Auguste Montferrand and constructed in 1834 upon the order of Emperor Nicholas I in honour of the victory of his elder brother Alexander I over Napoleon.
The monument completed the ensemble of the Arch of the General Staff building dedicated to the victory in the Patriotic War of 1812 and became the central element of the composition of Palace Square.
Montferrand faced a difficult task - to create a column that would surpass
in its grandeur thežVendome Column erected in honour of Napoleonís victories.
Famous Trajanís Column in Rome was taken as a model. The architect succeeded
with the concept - thevAlexander Column is indeed unique. Its height is 47.5 metres
(the height of the Vendome Column is 44 metres). It is made
out of whole granite monolith (the Vendome Column and the Trajanís Column
are made of stone blocks and are hollow inside) and stands due to its
weight and brilliant planning. The stem of the column
Bronze capital crowns the column top. Its upper part is a rectangular
abacus made of brickwork with bronze lining. A bronze pedestal, inside
of which there is an enclosed main supporting block consisting of multilayer
brickwork - granite, brick and two more granite layers in the foundation,
is mounted upon it. The monument is crowned with the figure of an angel
by Boris Orlovsky. The angel holds
The Alexander Column itself is taller than the Vendome Column and the figure
of the angel surpasses the figure of Napoleon crowning the French
monument in its height. The angel tramples the snake with the cross thus
symbolizing peace and quiet that Russia brought to Europe by winning a victory
over the Napoleon army. Light figure of the angel, falling clothes
The Alexander column indeed became an expression of spiritual power and military glory of the Imperial Russia. 175 years ago the unveiling of the monument celebrated by ceremonial public prayer and military parade took place.
During the anniversary celebration ceremony organized by the State Hermitage and the command of the Leningrad Military District formation and ceremonial passing of columns of representatives of military educational institutions as well as carrying out of historical banners of participating regiments of the Patriotic war of 1812 took place.
At present the transfer process of the Alexander Column from the Museum
of City Sculpture to the State Hermitage is in progress. Works on manufacturing
of additional metal fence around the monument to provide its safety are being conducted.