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Russian Tsar (Czar) sweat bath

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Russian Tsar (Tzar) steam bath in Kolomenskoe palace

russian tsar steam bath

In the 15th-17th centuries the Kolomenskoe village became first a Grand Prince’s and then the Tsar’s estate. Russian Tsar Alexis I built a wooden summer palace without using saws, nails or hook, consisting of 250 rooms in Kolomenskoe village (near the Moscow) in the second half of the 17th century. In the 15th-17th centuries the village became first a Grand Prince’s and then the Tsar’s estate. Tsar Peter the Great spent part of his youth here and his daughter future Empress Elizabeth Petrovna was born here in 1709. During the 18th century, after the Russian court moved to the new capital of St Petersburg, the palace fell into disrepair. By the order of the Empress Catherine II the old wooden palace was demolished in 1768, and replaced with modern stone-and-brick building. Russain Tsar Alexander I studied here on his way to Moscow with his grandmother, Catherine the Great.During the early Soviet period Kolomenskoe bacame an open air museum for old wooden buildings and houses. In 2010 the Moscow city rebuilt the old wooden palace to open a historical museum.

Photos: © Olga Matafonofa.
All photos are licensed for free private non-commercial use.

дворец алексея михайловича
Terem Palace of Russian Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich - a true embodiment of childhood fantasies about ancient Russian fairy-tale royal palace with a cacophony of Asianarchitecture with more than a rich red and gold interior enlighted through the colored windows.
верхние мандроги
Fanciful, fairytale roofs and windows decoration are still in use in fake "historical" tourist attraction villages to impress foreigners with "authentic" Russian style: The Mandrogi village in St. Petersburg area.
царское село баня
There were 4 separate sweat baths In Kolomna Terem Palace: one for the male, one for the Empress, one for princesses and the bigges one - for princes. Tsar Alexei Michalovich visisted steam bath 2 - 3 times a week.
нижняя ванна царское село
The Russians have always believed that the banya can cure diseases and help restore a person's physical and mental strength, especially after a long day of work. Commercial (trade) steam bath often has only a steam room or a steam room and a dry room. From time to time Russian tsars banned the residential steam bath ownership to force Russians pay to Tsar for the State steam bath service.
нижняя ванна царское село
After a bath session Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich liked to rest on a bench with cotton stuffed mattress.
нижняя ванна кавалерская мыльня
The Tsar's bath (banya) combined the steam room and the washing room, like the most of commercial Russian baths at that time. The bath's floor was paved with lead boards soldered with tin. The hardwood floor planks were place over with gaps to let water flow into drainage gutters.
кавалерская мыльня
Tubs of water in the Russain Tsar steam bath in Kolomenskoe Terem Palace.
баня царское село
The platform: a giant water tub for a Russian Tsar.
нижняя ванна
The Tsar's Bathroom had a swimming tub on a platform. The water heated up with hot stones, immersed into the tub. The seating was covered with the linings.
верхняя ванна царское село
The Tsar steam bath is a classic "black banya" with the smoke escapes through a hole in the wall opening (smoke window). Russians were not familiar with the safe chimneys building technology - even at the Tsar' builders level. Therefore, in reality smoke darkens the banya's interior wood planks. They used birch firewood to warm up bath stoves filled with round stones.
план дворцовой бани царского села
The steam in bath  produced by throwing water, beer or kvas on stones heated to extreme temperatures in a ceramic stove. A small amount of water on hot rocks will evaporate quickly, producing a steam consisting of small vapour particles. The hot steam rises to the top and bathers returning it to the body with Russian veniks - leafy bundles of birch twigs. Waving the venik causes convective heat. Adamus Olearius, in his Persian Travel Tales of the early 1600s, says, "they strew Pine Leaves powdered, and all sorts of Herbs and Flowers upon the Floor; which, together with the Lye make a very agreeable Scent" The Russian sweat bath has the high humidity level and hot temperatures - which is not healthy at all. Hopefully the huge Tsar bath' size got enough space for fresh air. But in small Russian log sweat houses high humidity and temperature can reach the dangerous level brining bathers to thermal stress and even to death.
нижняя ванна царское село
На репродукции: Medievel Russian sweat bath in Moscow (XVII-th century). The Tsar (Duke) and the bath attendant in steam bath. Russian State Historical Museum.

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