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The Church of the Nativity of Christ on the Cemetery
If you want to experience a most peculiar feeling of merging with the world which has long before vanished deep into the past, stay in the silence of this church, ascend the gallery and watch the paintings in the dark, lighting them only with a small torch.
The construction of this church was connected with the name of Dmitri Donskoy - this great Russian prince paid tribute to the Novgorod warriors, who had participated in the battle of Kulikovo Field (1380) against the Mongol hordes. It is believed that the Novgorod fighters, who died of wounds after the end of the battle, had been buried on the very spot where in 1381-1382 the stone Church of the Nativity of Christ was constructed. The church is quite small and simple in design. Nowadays one can hardly see it through the trees lining the cemetery's alleys. But the church has been well-preserved.
For the first time fresco paintings were discovered in the upper part of the church in 1912. In the 1980s they were finally cleaned. The paintings of the church are almost contemporary to the times of Theophanes the Greek's masterpieces of the Ilyin Church, but totally contrasting in style. All images are peaceful, made in the realistic manner with a trace of portrait similarity, and the artist's mastery is exquisite and refined.
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