|Location:||Near Sviatohirsk city, eastern Ukraine.|
All year daily.
|Address:||Sviatohirsk Lavra, Tel: +380-, Fax: +380-,|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.|
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|Last update:||$Date: 2015/08/30 21:58:49 $|
|14th cty||first monks settle in the area.|
|1526||first written mentioned.|
|1624||officially recognized as the Sviatohirsk Uspensky Monastery.|
|1787||renovated with the money of the government of Catherine II.|
|1844||renovated with donations by Mikhailovich Potemkin and his wife Tatiana Borisovna.|
|1918||destroyed after the revolution.|
|1922||monastery closed, monks leave, houses used as holiday homes for workers.|
|1947||buildings destroyed by the Soviets.|
|1960||buildings destroyed by the Soviets and replaced by a cinema and a canteen.|
|2004||monastery officially granted the status of a Ukrainian Orthodox Church lavra.|
The Sviatohirsk Lavra is named after Sviatohirsk (Holy Hill) where it is located on, nearby town Sviatohirsk was also named after this hill. Lavra means cave monastery and is given to all monasteries which started with hermits living in caves. In this case, there is a rock with steep cliffs on banks of Seversky Donets River opposite the city. The hermits cut their caves into the soft gypsum and chalk, which created a swiss cheese of caves and passages, with several windows opening from caves in the middle of the cliff to the river. Today numerous buildings were erected on top of the hill and at its foot, the architecture is typical for the Ukrainian Orthodox Church: white buildings with lots of towers with golden and green cupolas and onion domes.
As the building were destroyed several times during the 20th century, there are almost no remains form earlier times. The only part of the monastery which is older than 100 years are actually the caves.
The entrance to the caves is located at the foot of the hill near the cathedral. There is an iron door with a widow above. Through the narrow passage behind we reach numerous cells on both sides of the passage. The main passage goes uphill underground and after 500 steps it reaches the top of the hill.
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