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St. Nicholas Cathedral is the oldest cathedral on the Yaroslav’s Courtyard, on Trade side and among all cathedrals in Russia consecrated to St. Nicholas. It was built in 1113 - 1136 and consecrated in honour of St.Nicholas the Miracle-Worker, who was highly revered in Rus. In 1992 the cathedral was listed as UNESCO World Heritage.
St. Nicholas Cathedral is located in the territory of the former prince yard. According to the first Novgorod chronicle, the temple was founded by Prince Mstislav Vladimirovich in 1113. This is the first stone building on the Trade side, devoted to St. Nicholas the Miracle-Worker.
Being of about the same age as Veliky Novgorod, the cathedral has been located in its heart, on the Yaroslav’s Courtyard, for nine centuries. By the end of the XX century St. Nicholas Cathedral needed the urgent and expensive restoration which was impossible under the conditions of economic crisis in Russia. Hanseatic cities-partners helped the city out as they had done several times in the period of Russian-Hanseatic relations. In 1990th restoration works, financed by the cities of the Hanseatic League of New Time, were carried out in the cathedral. Inhabitants of hundred Hanseatic cities took part in the rescue of St. Nicholas Cathedral. Novgorod gratefully remembers the name of these cities. You can read them at the main entrance to the cathedral. Numerous fragments of original painting of the XII century are preserved in the interior. Fragments of frescos of the XII century, including “Job on the Dung Hill” and “Last Judgement”, fresco ornaments and etc. are exhibited in the cathedral. Most of the painting refers to the XIX century.
In 1999 when Novgorod celebrated the 1140 anniversary the cathedral appeared in its full splendor. The masterpiece of architecture of the XII century was saved from the total decay during the restoration. Besides the imprints of time were removed from the cathedral: the amazing cathedral was restored in its original forms.
In May, 2013 exhibitions timed to the 900 anniversary of the cathedral were open:
Multimedia panorama the Great Market and Prince yard is a new hardware and software exhibition complex. Panoramic screen with the vision in 360˚ and 6 meter diameter were built special for this complex. Panoramic images are created using six wide-angle projectors which are controlled by high-power computers. The system of the directed sound allows creating various sound effects.
Visitors have a unique opportunity to plunge in the atmosphere of the Medieval Novgorod, to hear the voice of the ancient Market, to know where Veche was held and the merchant court was in session and also to understand better the history of one of the most ancient cities of Russia.
Research scientists of such departments as: storage and study of architectural monuments and monumental painting, storage and study of written sources as well as specialists of museum development departmant were part of creative team working at the panorama. The inventor of audio-visual and multimedia decisions is the company A3V from Moscow. It is possible to call this project a pilot one, because this is the first attempt of Novgorod State United Museum to adopt modern information technologies to the expositional work. The plot about St.Nicholas Cathedral, its architecture and painting is the sequal of the cycle. Iconostasis of the cathedral will be recreated by the means of multimedia. Viewers will be able to see over 70 icons from the funds of the Novgorod State United Museum, which were the part of 5 tier iconostasis and were located there up to 1980s. Works at the creation of multimedia content for the panorama have been finished by the end of 2014 with the plot about peculiarities of architecture of the monuments of Yaroslav’s Courtyard and the Market. According to the words of famous architect G.M. Shtender these monuments are “the pages of stone chronicle of the Novgorod history”.
Adoption of modern digital technologies, the search of new ways of comminication with visitors is development trends of the modern museums. The project, which creates the panoramic images, shows the history of Veliky Novgorod in a new way. The keeper of the history is the Novgorod State United Museum.