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Historama, April 30

Published time: April 30, 2010 21:36
Edited time: April 30, 2010 21:36

An architectural pearl of old Moscow and a Soviet human rights activists’ bulletin are discussed in tonight’s Historama.

Foundation laid of oldest building in Moscow

The original foundations of Assumption Cathedral were laid inside the Kremlin on this day in 1472.

However, two years into construction, just as the cathedral was about to be completed, an earthquake destroyed the building.

Tsar Ivan III invited leading Italian architect Aristotle Fioravanti to rebuild the cathedral from scratch.

Read more about Ivan III on Russiapedia

Completed in 1479, Assumption Cathedral still stands on Cathedral Square of Moscow’s Kremlin, and is the oldest building in the city.

Legend has it that Stalin ordered a special service to be held in the cathedral in the winter of 1941 to pray for the salvation of Russia from the invading Germans, who had reached the edge of the city.

Read more about this period in Russia history on our site

USSR’s underground bulletin on human rights abuses

The first issue of the underground periodical “Chronicle of Current Events” was published today in 1968.

Created by anonymous dissident authors, it was one of the longest-running publications covering the problem of human rights in the Soviet Union. It reported on political arrests, searches, interrogations and repressions.

Although the “Chronicle” authors claimed the bulletin was legal under the Soviet Constitution, they were frequently arrested.

The bulletin managed to survive until 1983, when its editor in chief was imprisoned.

Read more on this day in Russian history in our “Russia Now’ section