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Alexander Pushkin, the greatest Russian poet of XIX century, once said: "There are two most horrible things in my country: the roads and the fools". While there was a certain amount of word play involved (there two words are phonetically similar in Russian), I completely agree with his last point (but then, they are everywhere...), but can't agree with the first. Russian roads aren't horrible, Russian roads are fantastic! Never mind that most of them are passable only for half a year at best because of the mud that floods them in spring and in autumn, never mind that there is none or very little infrastructure along, and it didn't change a lot in 200 years from Pushkin's time... because esthetically, they are so clearly superior to the sterile European highways! Just look at this picture if you don't believe me:)

All roads lead to Rome but there are exceptions. This one leads to Kizhi, an old village in the North of Russia, situated on a small island in Onega lake, housing an astonishing ensemble of old wooden churches. Kizhi pogost, as the whole area is known in Russian, is an old settlement which united more than 100 villages in the 16th century. The jewel of its architecture is the 22-domed Transfiguration church of 1722, seen here in the center. The 9-domed Intercession church was built nearby in 1764, and a belltower was added in 1874. The most impressive thing about these structures is that they were erected without any nails or other metal ties!

Kizhi pogost is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Scanned from printed photo, cropped to panorama format, converted to BW, noise added.

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Additional Photos by Alexander Pasternak (pasternak) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1341 W: 179 N: 3373] (15185)
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