The word “kremlin” means fortification, and there are many across Russia. However, “The Kremlin” always refers to the Kremlin in Moscow.
The history of The Kremlin goes back to the reign of the Great Prince Yuri of Kiev, considered to be the founder of Moscow. There is an equestrian statue, erected in 1954, on Tverskaya St. honoring the Great Prince. The white stone walls and towers of the Kremlin were erected in 1367 by Dmitry Donskoy. Totally rebuilt between 1485 and 1495, the Kremlin acquired its present appearance and dimensions.
At the beginning of the 18th century, Peter I moved the capital of Russia to St. Petersburg, but the coronation of Russian tsars continued to be held in within the Kremlin walls in the Cathedral of the Dormition. There you will see the actual chair in which Ivan IV (terrible) sat during the ceremony.
The Soviet government moved the capital back to Moscow in 1917, and the Kremlin became the seat of the highest state bodies, known as the “preserve,” where only those who lived or worked there were admitted.
Only since 1955 have the unique museums of the Kremlin become accessible to the public. The old cathedrals resumed religious services and the Kremlin bells, which had been silent for over 70 years, ring joyously throughout the area.
Also inside the Kremlin walls is the Kremlin Armoury Museum. The Kremlin Armoury requires a seperate admission ticket. It is well worth the price ! Inside the Kremlin Armoury you will find the Crown Jewels, various other gifts given to the Russian state, some Faberge eggs and even the gown worn by Catherine the Great at her coronation.
The Moscow Kremlin has been the residence of Russian tsars and hierarchs of the Russian Orthodox Church. Since 1992 it has been the residence of the President of the Russian Federation and his administration.
The Kremlin remains a unique monument of Russian culture and will always be a symbol of Russian statehood.