Cathedral of the Transfigured Saviour and the Church of the Entry into Jerusalem in Torzhok


In the summer of 1910, Russian photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii (1863–1944) traveled and photographed extensively in Tver’ Province northwest of Moscow. Among the towns he visited was Torzhok, located 60 kilometers west of Tver’. Referred to in written sources as early as 1139, Torzhok is among Russia’s oldest trading centers. The name “Torzhok” comes from the word for trading site. After the founding of Saint Petersburg in 1703, Torzhok saw a renewal of its fortunes as a transit center to the new capital. This southwest view down the Tvertsa River shows the Saints Boris and Gleb side of the town, named after its largest monastery, seen here on the right bank of the river. In the center is the five-domed neoclassical Transfiguration Cathedral (1822), built to a design by the eminent architect Carlo Rossi. To the left are the bell tower and the Church of the Entry of Christ into Jerusalem (1842). Along the river promenade to the right are large 18th and 19th-century houses near the central market square, which is just beyond the right edge of the photograph. Prokudin-Gorskii used a special color photography process to create a visual record of the Russian Empire in the early 20th century. Some of his photographs date from about 1905, but the bulk of his work is from between 1909 and 1915, when, with the support of Tsar Nicholas II and the Ministry of Transportation, he undertook extended trips through many different parts of the empire.

Date Created

Subject Date

Title in Original Language

[Спасо-Преображенский собор и Входоерусалимская церковь в Торжке]

Type of Item

Physical Description

Glass negative (presented as a digital color composite)


  • Prokudin-Gorskii’s photographic work survives primarily in two forms: 1,901 black-and-white triple-frame glass plate negatives, made with color separation filters, which Prokudin-Gorskii used to make color prints and lantern slides; and 12 albums of sepia-tone prints, made from the glass negatives, which Prokudin-Gorskii compiled as a record of his travels and studies. The Library of Congress purchased the glass plate negatives and the albums from the Prokudin-Gorskii family in 1948. In 2004, the Library of Congress had digital color composites made from all the surviving glass negatives using a software algorithm to automatically align the color components. As with most historical photographs, title and subject identifications are corrected and enhanced through new research. Current information on the collection is at

Last updated: January 11, 2017