Annunciation Cathedral, Kharkiv

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Coordinates: 49°59′25″N 36°13′27″E / 49.99028°N 36.22417°E / 49.99028; 36.22417

The Annunciation Cathedral

The Annunciation Cathedral is the main Orthodox church of Kharkiv, Ukraine. The pentacupolar Neo-Byzantine structure with a distinctive 80-meter-tall bell tower was completed on October 2, 1888, from designs by a local architect, Mikhail Lovtsov. The church was consecrated in 1901, and the earlier Annunciation church was then pulled down.

The candy-striped cathedral supplanted the older Assumption Cathedral as the main church of Kharkiv and was one of the largest and tallest churches of the Russian Empire. The icon screen used to be of Carrara marble.[1] The church was frescoed in a style derived from St Vladimir's Cathedral in Kiev.[1] On July 3, 1914 the church became recognized as the city's cathedral.

The cathedral was closed to worshippers in 1930, but it was reopened during the German occupation in 1943. During that time the space in the church initially was assigned to a cultural lyceum, while there is some evidence that it was used as a warehouse. During the World War II it was a church of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church.

Since 1946 the cathedral has been the seat of the Kharkiv and Bohodukhiv eparchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), while the bishop's residence has stayed in the Saint-Pokrov Monastery (Kharkiv). The Ecumenical Patriarch Athanasius III Patelaros and several saintly bishops are buried in the cathedral.[1]

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