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The subject index / Grand Cascade (Peterhof)

Grand Cascade (Peterhof)

Categories / Architecture/Architectural Monuments/Architectural Ensembles

GRAND CASCADE, the main construction of the Peterhof fountains and cascades, located on the northern slope of the shore terrace in front of the Great Palace, facing the Lower Park. It was constructed in 1715-24 (architect J.F. Braunstein, J.B. Le Blond, N. Michetti, M.G. Zemtsov), the original sculptural decor (gilded lead) was created by sculptors M.K. Rastrelli, F.P. Vassout and G.K. Osner. The Sampson Fountain, a monument to the victory in the Battle of Poltava (on St. Samson’s Day), was opened in 1735 (sculptor B.K. Rastrelli, craftsman P.J. Soualem). The Grand Cascade encompasses the Great and Upper grottos, two symmetrical waterfall staircases with water jets on seven steps, the central three-step cascade and the Sampson scoop. From the Grand Cascade, the Grand Canal leads to the Gulf of Finland with 22 fountains-bowls (1735, architect M. G. Zemtsov, bowls - 1853-60, architect A.I. Stakenshneider). In 1799-1806, a full reconstruction of the Grand Cascade was undertaken (architect A.N. Voronikhin, master F.A. Strelnikov): the former statues were replaced with bronze gilded sculptures (1800-01, sculptors F.F. Shchedrin, F.G. Gordeev, I.P. Prokofiev, I.P. Martos, masters V.P. Ekimov, E. Gastecloux). The central composition is Sampson Tearing the Lion's Jaws (sculptor M.I. Kozlovsky). During the restoration of the Grand Cascade 1859-60 (architect N.L. Benois) statues in the grottoes and the Basket Fountain were installed. The Grand Cascade boasts 33 statues and sculptural groups, 18 vases and 31 bas-reliefs on the steps (recreated in 1947). In the autumn of 1941, a considerable number of sculptures were sheltered and preserved. During the occupation, Sampson, Neva and Volkhov sculptures were stolen and the Grand Cascade was blown up; restored only in 1947-50. The symbol of Peterhof, Sampson, was recreated by sculptors V.L. Simonov and N.V. Mikhailov. In 1987-95, an extensive restoration of the Grand Cascade was carried out, lost and distorted elements were reconstructed (architect M.A. Dementyeva).

References: Вернова Н. В. Петергоф: Большой каскад. Петродворец, 1999; Раскин А. Душа Петергофа: Фонтаны и каскады. СПб., 1999.

Y. M. Piryutko.

Benois Nikolay Leontievich
Braunstein Johann Friedrich
Dementyeva M.A.
Ekimov Vasily Petrovich
Gastecloux E.
Gordeev Fedor Gordeevich
Kozlovsky Mikhail Ivanovich
Le Blond Jean-Baptiste Alexander
Martos Ivan Petrovich
Michetti Niccolo
Mikhaylov N.V.
Osner Konrad
Prokofiev Ivan Prokofievich
Rastrelli Bartolomeo Carlo de
Shchedrin Feodosy Fedorovich
Simonov Vasily Lvovich
Soualem P.J.
Stakensсhneider Andrey Ivanovich
Strelnikov F.A.
Vassout Francois
Voronikhin Andrey Nikiforovich
Zemtsov Mikhail Grigorievich

Раскин А. Г. Душа Петергофа: Фонтаны и каскады. СПб., 1999
Вернова Н. В. Петергоф: Большой каскад. Петродворец, 1999


Decorative Monumental Sculpture (entry)

DECORATIVE MONUMENTAL SCULPTURE. The art of monumental sculpture dates back to the time of Peter the Great; its first examples appeared throughout St. Petersburg, at the Summer Garden and various suburb residences

Kozlovsky M.I., (1753-1802), sculptor

KOZLOVSKY Mikhail Ivanovich (1753 - 1802, St. Petersburg), sculptor, representative of Classicism. Studied at the Academy of Arts from 1764 until 1773 under N.F. Gillet and A.P. Losenko, and became a member in 1794

Lower Park (Petrodvorets)

LOWER PARK forms the main part of the Peterhof Palace and Park Ensemble, located on an area adjacent to the Gulf of Finland which is actually lower than sea level, hence its name. The total area of the park is 102

Peterhof Museum Park

PETERHOF MUSEUM PARK. Called Petrodvorets State Museum Park in 1944-91, the museum was founded in 1918. It included the palace and park ensemble in the town of Peterhof: the Lower Park and the Upper Park with fountains, a system of canals and pools

Peterhof, palace and park ensemble

PETERHOF, the palace and park ensemble in Petrodvorets. Until 1917, remained a summer imperial residence on the southern coast of the Gulf of Finland. The construction of Peterhof started in 1709 at the command of Tsar Peter the Great

Prokofiev I.P., (1758-1828), sculptor

PROKOFIEV Ivan Prokofievich (1758 - 1828, St. Petersburg), sculptor and drawer. He studied at the Academy of Arts (1764-79) under N.F. Gillet and F.G. Gordeev. Received a retainer from the Academy of Arts to study in Paris (1779-84)

Samsonovsky Canal

SAMSONOVSKY CANAL (Samsonovsky Pipeline), an artificial hydraulic construction, a part of the water supply system of Peterhof fountains and ponds. It starts from Bolshoy Krugly Pond of Meadow (Lake) Park and ends in Colonists Park by Olgin Pond

Shchedrin F.F. (1751-1825), sculptor

SHCHEDRIN Feodosy Fedorovich (1751, St. Petersburg - 1825), sculptor, brother of S. F. Shchedrin and father of painter Silvester Shchedrin (1791-1830) and architect A. F. Shchedrin. He was N. F