CITY BILA TZERKVA
“Olexandria” Historical Landscape Park
“Olexandria” historical landscape park is one of most beautiful landscape park of Ukraine and also the monument of architecture of national value and landscape art. It was founded by Ksaveriy and Oleksandra Branicki in the end of 18 century at the territory of ancient forest. Authors of the project were architects Muffo and Domeniko Botani. Great contribution was also made by gardener August Ens working in “Olexandria” for 54 years and honored by memorable sign mentioning fifty years of his work. During his long service Ens has formed wonderful landscapes which do not lose their attractiveness even nowadays, among those there are Fir, Linden and Chestnut alleys, compositions of Big and Small lawns. Later Bila Tserkva and “Olexandria” were inherited by Vladyslav Mykhal, count Branicki, grandson of Coutess Olexandra Vasylivna, one of sons of Vladyslov Hrygor. The latest hostess of this estate (till 1917) was wife of count Vladyslav Mariya Yevstafiyivna who was from Sapiega family. Descendant of the Branicki live now in France, Poland and other countries. In 1946 “Olexandria” was transferred into ownership of National Academy of Science of Ukraine and now it is kept by this establishment.
General themes of scientific studies are introduction and acclimatization of plants, preservation and renewal of ancient gardens, protection of rare and disappearing species specified by the Red Book of Ukraine. Square of the park is 400 hectares. Its basic vegetation consists of native plants and brushwood; park compositions include a lot of exotic plants from different climatic and natural conditions. Collection of the park contains approximately 2500 species, forms and kinds. Some trees are more than 200 years old, they are: magnificent oaks, black and Weymouth pines, American cedar, canoewood, tamarack, Polish and European larches, sweet beans, red-fruited thorns etc. Of greatest value is old oak-wood rated as national heritage of Ukraine (square of 50 hectares is covered by more than 2300 trees which are 200 to 400 years old). Architectural structures created in early 19th century are also very valuable. Symbols and ideas of their creation were very different. Thus, due to fashion requirements of that times, the counts of Branicki built entire set of memorial structures dedicated to outstanding persons: they dedicate to Great Prince Grygoryi Potemkin of Taurida The Garden of Friendship, “Rotonda” pavilion, The Garden of Potemkin, Pelican Column; to Emperor Alexander I – Tsar Garden, hornbeam house. Turkish house, Varna Fortress and Gladiator were built to commemorate Mykhaylo Vorontsov, the husband of junior doughter of the Branicki whose name was Yelyzaveta. There’s a lot of romantic sculptures decorating separate parts of the park. They are: Colonnade of Echo, Chinese bridge, Ruins, Arch bridges, summerhouses, fountains and waterfalls. Big attention should be paid to the gardener’s house and greenhouse. The gardener’s house is the only building of agricultural purpose preserved at the territory from late 18th century. This brick house consists of two-storied central building and 100-meter western and 130-meter eastern wings. The central part was slightly rebuilt in 1938. The greenhouse (1824) was destroyed during patriotic war. A new one was erected on old basement in 1963. Nowadays they have park management and museum working in the gardener’s house. There are 16 wonderful statue in marble kept in this museum with Three Graces (by Antonio Kanova), Boy with a Dog and Boy with a Bow (by Pampolini) etc.
All sculptures were made in white marble in Napoleon times. The main entrance to the park is that from avenue of 50th Anniversary of Victory, here the visitors are welcomed by busts of Taras Shevchenko and Alexander Pushkin. These poets visited this park (Pushkin wrote part of his “Poltava” here). Due to increase in number of visitors, two additional entrances were built in north-western part of the park from the side of Skvyrske highway. The park may be entered by automobiles and there’s a parking in it. Walking south from the main entrance, one will see Sun lawn which is a part of New park, one of landscapes added in postwar years. Its square is 7 hectares. It is seen as large open space with trees and brushwood grown irregularly and having total square of 12 hectares. When walking through this park a lot of visitors pay their attention to ponds which make the park especially beautiful and inimitable. These ponds are located as cascade in three big cloughs running into Ros’. Expanse of water with swans and mallards, impossible peace of bank clough landscapes, prattle of streams and crashes of waterfalls – all of them participate to create unforgettable impressions. It is possible to tell endlessly about diversity of architectural memorials and sculptures of “Olexandria”, individuality and beauty of its landscapes, but it is better to visit it personally, walk through the park and see this splendor of human creation. We will guarantee unforgettable impressions for you.
The Church of St. John the Baptist
It was 1789 when Branicki allotted costs for construction of the church of St. John the Baptist on Zamkova Hill. For unknown reasons this construction was delayed and was finished only in 1812. Branicki erected this church to commemorate premature death of his son Olexandr who fell off horse as he was a child. The interior of the church is decorated by original complicated artistic molding with open rosaces. The church is decorated also with monumental painting of unknown but talented artists (with total square of 61 sq.m.). One of the walls preserves white marezzo stela commemorating Kateryna Branicka-Sangushko.The building is made of bricks and is cross-shaped, with full-centered apsis, one dome and two bell towers, the western one of which contains a chime. Once there had been also the second chime. Parade main frontage looking at Yaroslav the Wise Street is emphasized by antium made of four columns of Corinthian order. One can reach it by marble steps reconstructed in 1980’s. The masters of the past were skilled in finding place for hieratic buildings. They constructed the church on high hill and harmonized it with picturesque landscapes. There’s no more suitable place in all Bila Tserkva. The interior of this building covered with artistically made molding is of the greatest value. There’s a thought though unconfirmed that the author of this wonderful Classicistic monument is Italian Domeniko Botani who was the Branickis’ architect for some time. The frontages of the church are interesting as well. Their details do not struggle with volume, that’s why they may be conceived only at short distance. Only leaving the building one can evaluate all enchantment of this decision and execution. Architecture of frontages is outstanding with its trimness and impressionability, it catches your imagination by its gorgeous composition and richness of imaginativeness. A lot of years were spent to build and many of them were spent to reconstruct it. During 50’s the building of this church was used as a lecture hall, during 60’s it was used as a storage. 1964 marked the beginning of reconstruction works (reconstruction project author is Korneyeva V.I.): there were side walls built, destroyed choir lofts disassembled, stairs built and dome firmed. Nowadays we have organ and chamber music hall here.
Monument to the Victims of Holodomor of 1932-1933
The tragedy of Holodomor of 1932-1933 did not leave Bila Tserkva region aside. Thousands of harmless people starved from famine. Approximate statistics tells that there were 22 thousands of harmless victims of Holodomor in Bila Tserkva region with city data included. The monument was built on initiative of democratic organizations of the city. There was only six month left from the day of competence publication by the municipality and this term was so short that there were doubts if it is possible to erect some sign made of stable material. There was an active negotiation with community representatives taking part in. The board of city builders selected the project of H. Mosendz, an architect from Brovary. His attention to the tragedy is shown in a form of hill with a stone cross and commemorative tablet in surrounded by the stone niche on its slope. The symbol of indestructibility of life will be the rye sown on this hill. Paved square in front of the monument and path around it are decorated with 12 metal candles. The Office of Architecture proposed to erect this monument at the place of former Orthodox cemetery in the north-western part of square at cross-road of Yaroslav the Wise and Pershotravneva Streets. The costs for its construction were given by companies, organizations and residents of the city. Elements of the monument were made by industrial complex of public enterprises (cross, stone surrounding) and the plant of non-standard equipment (metal elements), erecting and supporting works were made by Rode Repair and Building Office of Bila Tserkva. On September, 16th 1993 there was a meeting and Requiem service held due to the monument opening.
Monument the Prince Yaroslav
Monument to Yaroslav the WiseMonument to the Prince Yaroslav the Wise, the founder of settlement and fortress of Yuryiv (which was the predecessor of Bila Tserkva) was opened to mark the 950th anniversary of the city and was erected on Zamkova Hill in 1983. The Great Prince of Kyiv being the son of Volodymyr Svyatoslavovych who baptized Kyiv Rus’ was born approximately in 978. During his rule there was created the code of laws so called “Yaroslav’s Truth”, forming the oldest part of Rus’ legislation named “The Rus’ Truth”. Christianity spread and become more stable and organization structure and church hierarchy were formed during his rule. Yaroslav’s Kyiv Rus’ was one of the largest and magnificent European states which reached the top point of its development. The fortress of Yuryiv was one of southern posts resisting nomads’ attacks. The name of settlement came after Christian name of Yaroslav which was Yuri or George. The population of the settlement was of mixed type: captive Poles settled here by Yaroslav, Rus’ population and peaceable nomads, Berendeis and even Pechenigs who join Rus’ to resist attacks of the Polovtsi. Late 11th century marked Porossya as separate episcopate with its cathedra based in Yuryiv. A lot of wonderful buildings were created by Yaroslav in many cities of Kyiv Rus’ which was peaceful and calm state for dozens years of his rule. Ha was outstanding statesman deservedly called “the Wise”. This name will be always remembered by history.
The Church of St. Mary Magdalene
The church of St. Mary Magdalene was built in 1843 for costs given by Vladyslav Ksaveriyovych Branicki. It is very interesting architectural building having the main place in the transfluvial part of the city. It has good visual connection and can be well seen when entering the city from Tarashcha direction and – of course, it is no coincidence that it is seen well from the cathedral of the Savior’s Transfiguration. The church is characterized by wonderful interior paintings enlarging emotional pressure onto the prayers. The building is classical, with one dome, cross-formed and four-column one. Bell tower is built-on to the church. The entrance is decorated by antium. There is small cemetery preserved near the church of St. Mary Magdalene, here was buried the wife of Father Peter Lebedintsev Olexandra and her brother Mykola. The church was closed in 1934 and during the period of global antireligious propaganda and victimization of members of clergy as well as during the years of German invasion. In 1942 its services were renewed and since then it has been the permanently acting Orthodox church. The capital restoration of the church was started in 145 years after its foundation. During two years the building was not only repaired from inside and outside but was also repainted by Pochayiv artists. In 1993 there was sanctuary built for water consecration at the expense of the adherents of the church.