The Dilapidated Fortress

This very unusual and moody old fortress, the Golden Gate, sits obscurely in the middle of old Kiev. It is unlike anything I have ever seen, and I still don’t know what to think of it. It wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t well-formed… it was just… kinda… there. But picture-worthy? Sure!

The Dilapidated Fortress

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  • http://mk2weddings.blogspot.com MK

    Wow. what a find! I don’t know what to think of it either… reminds me of some of the old mosques I saw in Egypt that were never finished… you wonder what these guys were thinking.

  • charles

    Wow, very interresting. What is it called? what was it used for? what is it used for now? when was it build? Look like the side have beed added much later on with the center part used as a gate in a walled in city. Just a guess ….

  • http://www.tidalgrrrl.blogspot.com Shelley

    That is so neat. It reminds me of a cathedral in Ribe, Danmark that was originally built in one style, then built on by about 5 more architects over the course of about 800 years. It’s got sort of the same look as the one you photographed, but yours is missing the Subway sandwich shop in the back like the one in Danmark. hehe. Great photo!

  • http://www.stuckincustoms.com tratcliff

    Thanks all!

    This is called “The Golden Gate” – now it is not used for anything…

  • vadim

    This is one of the gates of the old city wall (none of the rest of the wall exists). What you see is only about 25 years old – rebuilt before Kiev’s 1500th anniversary in the early 1980s. Somewhere inside are two original walls, which is all there was prior to reconstrucion.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Gate_(Kiev)

  • http://www.stuckincustoms.com tratcliff

    This comment below is from Sean Taylor, fellow ENTJ, in Nova Scotia

    There’s so much more here than meets the eye.

    Kiev took on Byzantine Rite Christianity as the Rus state religion in 988 under Vladimir I.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_Orthodox_Church#Foundation_and_earliest_history
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianization_of_Kievan_Rus%27

    This reconstruction of the Golden Gate of Constantinople in Kiev symbolized the connection in faith, culture, architecture, history, and so much more. Just like the original, this was a main triumphal gate for ‘Constantinople North’.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Gate_(Kiev)

    Apparently there’s another one in Vladimir.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Gate_(Vladimir)

    The Original is part of the greatest ancient city-walls in recorded history:

    Google: Golden Gate

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walls_of_Constantinople

    The original Kievan version proably looked a lot like the archetype in Constantinople. After the fall of Constantinople to the Turks in 1453, Russia saw itself as The Third Rome:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_Rome

    Thus a rickety old oddly rebuilt leftover gate not only makes an awesome HDR photo-subject, but a resonant reminder of the past and present of Kievan/ Russian history and faith.

    Sometimes the history is ‘just sitting around’. Thanks for catching this one with your eagle-eye.

  • Lena

    What I always tell my friends when I show a picture of Golden Gate to them – just imagine that 1500 years ago it was the entrance to the city – and now it’s in the heart of the city…Kind of gives you a perspective of things :)
    Very nice picture.

  • Maryana

    It has a strange shape because it is a gate and there were walls on the sides. It actually was and still is pretty, at least to me. You just have to know more about the architecture of that time and the atmosphere of the old town. It is a unique place :). Nowadays it is a museum.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Appelmans/780382227 Michael Appelmans

    must have been trying to protect themselves from some really evil hombres to build this bad boy fortress. Love that little pillbox that hangs out into thin air ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jeff-Jones/1225137524 Jeff Jones

    what a great picture the way it looks both inviting and hostile… what a great spot to take those bad people out from the overhang eh? I think the history part from Sean Taylor was cool too. Sure don’t find these gems much do you? I like what Michael calls it the best.

  • Michael

    I have taken pictures of this gate every year since 2005. Now that I am DSLR and HDR, I am anxious to take new ones this November. Thanks for your inspiration!

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