Tsar Bell

At the foot of Ivan the Great Bell Tower in the Kremlin, on the white-stone pedestal, stands the unique monument of Russian casting art of the 18th century - the famous Tsar Bell. For over 150 years it has stricken the imagination of witnesses with its grandeur. Russia used to be famous for its casters making huge bells for the cathedrals and churches. In the beginning of the 17th century, during the fire in Moscow, one of the world’s biggest bells (128 tons), the Dormition, fell down and broke. Later, the Empress Anna of Russia ordered to cast a new bell from the remnants of the fallen increasing the weight up to 160 tons. The Tsar Bell was cast on November 25, 1735. However, in 1737 the Kremlin was hit by terrible fire. The bell was crashed by a burning wooden building. To prevent it from being melted, the bell was filled with water. As a result, 11 ton piece broke off the main bell's bodys. The broken bell stayed in the casting pit for almost a hundred years. In 1836 Auguste Montferrand raised the bell from the pit and set it on a decorative pedestal near the bell tower of Ivan the Great, where it stands today attracting attention of tourists.

The dimensions of the Tsar Bell are very impressive: its weight is more than 200 tons, the height - 6 m 14 cm; the diameter - 6 meters 60 centimeters. The Tsar Bell is made of bell bronze with the infusion gold and silver. The bell was decorated with relief portraits of the Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich and Tsarina Anna Ivanovna as well as the two inscriptions outlining the history of its casting.