Tauride Palace

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Tauride Palace


(in Leningrad), an example of Russian classical architecture.

The Tauride Palace was built in the period 1783–89 for Prince G. A. Potemkin (architect I. E. Starov; several structures in the palace area by the architect F. I. Volkov) and was intended for ceremonial receptions and festive occasions. Damaged by fire, it was restored between 1802 and 1804 (architects L. Ruska, K. I. Rossi, and V. P. Stasov; mural paintings by G. B. Scotti, 1819).

The palace consists of three separate buildings. The central building, whose interior has been partially restored, has an octagonal domed hall and the Great Gallery, with a double Ionic colonnade. The two auxiliary buildings are situated on either side of the main courtyard and are joined to the central building by connecting wings. In front of the main entrance at one time there was a moorage, which was faced with stone and connected with the Neva by a canal.

From 1906 to 1917 the meetings of the State Duma were held at the Tauride Palace, in a specially constructed meeting room on the site of the winter garden. After the February Revolution of 1917, the Petrograd Soviet of Workers’ and Soldiers’ Deputies was housed in the palace’s left wing until its move to Smol’nyi in August; the Provisional Committee of the State Duma met in the right wing. The bourgeois Provisional Government met in the Tauride Palace until its move to the Winter Palace in July. On April 4 (17), at a meeting of Bolshevik participants in the All-Russian Congress of Soviets that was held in the palace, V. I. Lenin delivered the report “The Tasks of the Proletariat in the Present Revolution” (the “April Theses”).

Numerous popular demonstrations were held in front of the Tauride Palace. On Jan. 5 (18), 1918, the Constituent Assembly met in the palace. The Third All-Russian Congress of Soviets and the Seventh Congress of the RCP(B) were held in the palace in January and March 1918, respectively. The Second Congress of the Communist International, at which Lenin presented a report, began its work in the palace in July.

After the Great Patriotic War (1941–45), the Tauride Palace was restored. The palace now houses the Leningrad Higher Party School.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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