Sights of Slobodsky


The Sloboda Palace is the former residence of Russian nobles; today it belongs to one of the country's most prestigious universities - the Technical University named after N.E. Bauman. The university got the name of the revolutionary because it was near the place where his murder was committed in 1905. Previously, the palace’s history was associated with other well-known surnames - Alexei Bestuzhev-Ryumin, Chancellor of the Russian Empire during the reign of Elizabeth Petrovna, and Count Alexei Orlov.

It was for Alexei Bestuzhev-Rumin in the middle of the 18th century that this palace was erected in the German settlement. A few years later, the chancellor was sent into exile in his estate near Mozhaisk, and his estate became the property of the treasury and then was presented to Count Orlov.

The next owner of the palace was another nobleman, Chancellor Alexander Bezborodko, who served under Catherine II and Paul I. By his order, the palace was rebuilt almost completely with the participation of architects Matvey Kazakov and Giacomo Quarenghi. In the second half of the 18th century, the palace was transformed so much that it was called one of the most beautiful buildings in Moscow, and a square was built in front of it. At the end of the century, the palace was acquired by Paul I, who began to call it Slobodsky.

At the beginning of the Patriotic War of 1812, in the Sloboda Palace, Emperor Alexander I delivered a speech addressed to the Moscow nobility, after which fundraising for the formation of the people's militia was immediately started. In a fire that occurred during Napoleon’s stay in the Russian capital, the palace burned down and remained without restoration for more than ten years.

In 1826, the palace building was transferred to the Orphanage to organize a vocational school, which later became a technical school, and from it, in turn, the Bauman Technical University "grew up". Over the years, several architects have worked to recreate the palace and adapt it to educational needs, including Domenico Gilardi, who restored several other famous Moscow buildings after the fire of 1812, and Lev Kekushev, an architect who built in the Art Nouveau style.

Currently, the former Sloboda Palace is one of the Baumanka buildings and a federal architectural monument.

Sloboda Palace

Sloboda Palace - a building located in Moscow on 2nd Baumanskaya street. It is located on the site of the estate of Chancellor Alexei Bestuzhev-Ryumin. In 1767, Catherine II granted his possession to Count Alexander Bezborodko, from whom ten years later the estate was bought by Paul I for his residence. The main house was rebuilt by architect Matvey Kazakov.

After the fire of 1812, the complex was reconstructed by the architect Domenico Gilardi with the support of Athanasius Grigoriev. Since 1826, he was in the department of the Educational House, which organized a vocational school in the walls of the palace. In 1930, it was named Bauman Mechanical Engineering Institute.

Possession of Paul I

In 1749, on the swampy banks of the Yauza River, Chancellor Alexei Bestuzhev-Ryumin began construction of the estate. The count chose this plot to be near Lefortovo, where Elizaveta Petrovna often retired with her retinue during her time in Moscow. At the same time, the nobleman was building a house in St. Petersburg on Kamenny Island, so the Moscow project, led by architect Peter Geyden, was moving slowly. The construction of the building was completed in 1753. The main role in the ensemble was given to the park with figured ponds descending to the river. The estate had a complex p-shaped structure with a towering central part. The building repeated the layout of the metropolitan estate of the count, so that he could not change his habits. The owner wanted to preserve the neutrality of the facades compared to the neighboring Annenhof, but contemporaries noted the luxury of the interior of the house.

Finishing work on the estate continued until 1758, when, due to court intrigues, Bestuzhev-Ryumin fell into disfavor of the empress and was exiled to the village of Goretovo, and his property was confiscated. During the reign of Catherine II, the former chancellor was acquitted and the palace again became his property. However, not wanting to participate in state affairs anymore, he proposed to the empress to redeem the Moscow estate at the expense of the treasury for 34 thousand rubles. According to other sources, Catherine II acquired the building after the death of the nobleman from his heirs.

Orlov and Bezborodko

In 1767, these possessions were granted to Count Alexei Orlov, who rarely used the new estate. The building slowly deteriorated, and in 1778 it was planned to dismantle it for materials for the construction of the royal chambers. During this period, the building was bought by the construction department of the Catherine Palace, but the idea was not realized, and in 1787 the empress granted the estate to Chancellor Alexander Bezborodko. According to researchers, the nobleman received such a gift as a thank you for his escort during a trip to the Crimea. In his letters to his mother, a description of this mercy was preserved:

Sloboda Palace
55 ° 45′56 ″ s w. 37 ° 41′04 ″ c. d. H G I O L
A country Russia
Architectural styleEmpire
Project AuthorDomenico Gilardi, Athanasius Grigoriev
Famous inhabitantsChancellors: Alexei Petrovich Bestuzhev-Ryumin, Alexander Andreevich Bezborodko, from 1797 - Emperor Paul I
Status An object of cultural heritage of the peoples of the Russian Federation of federal significance. Reg. No. 771410284380006 (EGROKN). Object No. 7710066000 (Wikigid database)
Having presented the house, the empress ordered it to be repaired, fixed, rebuilt and rebuilt according to the plan given by me for the treasury bill, from the Catherine’s new palace here. Thus, by the grace of Her Majesty, I will have in Moscow one of the best houses in the healthiest part of the city.

For the reconstruction of the estate Bezborodko invited architects Giacomo Quarenghi, who prepared the project for a new house, and Matvey Kazakov. Some researchers believe that Nikolai Lvov also took part in the work. The new building was erected on the old foundation and united the former buildings together, the decoration of the palace was designed in the style of classicism. The main risalit of the building was supplemented with a third floor, the central facade was decorated with a six-columned portico, and the rear with a semicircular terrace. The Polish king Stanislav Ponyatovsky described the interiors of the house in this way:

The Petersburg house of Bezborodko, which is richer in precious paintings, cannot equal the Moscow in the magnificence of decoration. Many travelers who had the opportunity to see Saint-Cloud at the time when it was completely trimmed for the French crown, argue that the decoration of the Bezborodkin house is more splendid and tasteful. Gold carvings on chairs were made in Vienna, and the best bronze was bought from French emigrants, in the dining room there is a ceremonial buffet, whose ledges are set by many beautiful vessels, gold, silver, coral, etc. The wallpaper is extremely rich, some of them are painted, others made in Russia. Chinese furniture is beautiful.

Possession of Paul I

Paul I was visiting the Bezborodko estate while preparing for the coronation in 1797. According to legend, he once noted that the inner garden of the house would be an excellent training ground. Wishing to please the monarch, the nobleman ordered to level the site and uproot all the trees during the night. The emperor was so impressed with this gesture that he acquired the estate. According to some reports, he also granted the count an empty section downstream of the Yauza River near Nikolovorobinsky Lane instead.

During the reign of Paul I, the former Bezborodko estate was rebuilt and it became known as the Sloboda Palace in honor of the German settlement on the territory of which it was located. To reconstruct the building, they invited Matvey Kazakov, who converted the building to the emperor’s Moscow residence. The work was carried out around the clock, 1,600 people were involved in it. Office spaces were arranged in the neighboring Marlin Palace, which were connected by galleries to the main building. The Lefort Palace, equipped for the stay of the great princes, was also planned to be combined with the complex, but this idea was not implemented. One of the buildings was connected to a wooden house church erected by Yelizov Nazarov according to the design of Vasily Bazhenov.

Alexander I stayed at the Sloboda Palace during the coronation celebrations in 1801. On July 6, 1812, the emperor read a patriotic appeal to the nobility and merchants within the walls of this building. Inspired by his speech, Muscovites began raising funds for military needs, without leaving the room. In the autumn of that year, the complex was badly damaged by a city fire, and the Marlin Palace was completely destroyed. Soon, a group of architects, consisting of Alexei Bakarev, Ivan Tamansky, Ivan Mironovsky and Evgraf Tyurin, prepared a plan for the restoration of the building, but it was not implemented.