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Kursk is a city and the administrative center of Kursk Oblast
Kursk Oblast
Kursk Oblast is a federal subject of Russia . Its administrative center is the city of Kursk.-Geography:The oblast occupies the southern slopes of the middle-Russian plateau, and its average elevation is from 177 to 225 meters . The surface is hilly, and intersected by ravines...

, Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

, located at the confluence
Confluence
Confluence, in geography, describes the meeting of two or more bodies of water.Confluence may also refer to:* Confluence , a property of term rewriting systems...

 of the Kur, Tuskar, and Seym River
Seym River
Seym is a river in Russia and Ukraine. Its length is 748 km and its basin area about 27,500 km². It is the largest tributary of the Desna....

s. The area around Kursk was site of a turning point in the Russian-German struggle during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 and the site of the largest tank battle in history
Battle of Kursk
The Battle of Kursk took place when German and Soviet forces confronted each other on the Eastern Front during World War II in the vicinity of the city of Kursk, in the Soviet Union in July and August 1943. It remains both the largest series of armored clashes, including the Battle of Prokhorovka,...

. Population:

History


Archaeology indicates that the site of Kursk was settled in the 5th or 4th century BCE. The settlement was fortified and included Slavs
Slavic peoples
The Slavic people are an Indo-European panethnicity living in Eastern Europe, Southeast Europe, North Asia and Central Asia. The term Slavic represents a broad ethno-linguistic group of people, who speak languages belonging to the Slavic language family and share, to varying degrees, certain...

 at least as early as the eighth century CE.

The first written record of Kursk is dated 1032. It was mentioned as one of Severia
Severia
Severia or Siveria is a historical region in present-day northern Ukraine and southwestern Russia, centered around the city of Novhorod-Siverskyi in Ukraine.-Severians:...

n towns by Prince Igor
Igor Svyatoslavich
Igor Svyatoslavich the Brave was a Rus’ prince...

 in The Tale of Igor's Campaign
The Tale of Igor's Campaign
The Tale of Igor's Campaign is an anonymous epic poem written in the Old East Slavic language.The title is occasionally translated as The Song of Igor's Campaign, The Lay of Igor's Campaign, and The Lay of...

: "As to my Kurskers, they are famous knights—swaddled under war-horns, nursed under helmets, fed from the point of the lance; to them the trails are familiar, to them the ravines are known, the bows they have are strung tight, the quivers, unclosed, the sabers, sharpened; themselves, like gray wolves, they lope in the field, seeking for themselves honor, and for their prince, glory."

The seat of a minor principality, Kursk was raided by the Polovtsians in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries and destroyed by Batu Khan
Batu Khan
Batu Khan was a Mongol ruler and founder of the Ulus of Jochi , the sub-khanate of the Mongol Empire. Batu was a son of Jochi and grandson of Genghis Khan. His ulus was the chief state of the Golden Horde , which ruled Rus and the Caucasus for around 250 years, after also destroying the armies...

 around 1237. The city was rebuilt no later than 1283. It was ruled by Grand Duchy of Lithuania
Grand Duchy of Lithuania
The Grand Duchy of Lithuania was a European state from the 12th /13th century until 1569 and then as a constituent part of Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth until 1791 when Constitution of May 3, 1791 abolished it in favor of unitary state. It was founded by the Lithuanians, one of the polytheistic...

 between 1360-1508. Kursk joined the centralized Russian state in 1508, becoming its southern border province. It was an important center of the corn trade with Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

 and hosted an important fair, which took place annually under the walls of the monastery of Our Lady of Kursk
Our Lady of Kursk
Our Lady of Kursk is an icon of Theotokos of the Sign, apparently painted in the thirteenth century and discovered in a forest near Kursk ca. 1300. It was preserved in the Black Hermitage of the Roots , an abbey founded on the spot of its discovery...

. It was raided freuaently by Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and Crimean Khanate
Crimean Khanate
Crimean Khanate, or Khanate of Crimea , was a state ruled by Crimean Tatars from 1441 to 1783. Its native name was . Its khans were the patrilineal descendants of Toqa Temür, the thirteenth son of Jochi and grandson of Genghis Khan...

 until late of 17th century and was ruled Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth between 1611-1634. It was bounded to successively Kiev Governorate
Kiev Governorate
Kiev Governorate , or Government of Kiev, was an administrative division of the Russian Empire.The governorate was established in 1708 along with seven other governorates and was transformed into a viceroyalty in 1781...

 (1708–1727), Belgorod Governorate (1727–1779) and Kursk Viceroyality (1779–1797). It was finally become center of Kursk Governorate in 1797.

Town status was granted to Kursk in 1779.

The Soviet government prized Kursk for rich deposits of iron ore and developed it into one of the major railroad hubs in the Russian Southwest. During World War II, Kursk was occupied by Germans between 4 November 1941 and 8 February 1943. Again in World War II, the village of Prokhorovka
Prokhorovka
Prokhorovka is an urban locality and the administrative center of Prokhorovsky District of Belgorod Oblast, Russia, located along the Psyol River southwest of the city of Kursk. Population:...

 near Kursk was the center of the Battle of Kursk
Battle of Kursk
The Battle of Kursk took place when German and Soviet forces confronted each other on the Eastern Front during World War II in the vicinity of the city of Kursk, in the Soviet Union in July and August 1943. It remains both the largest series of armored clashes, including the Battle of Prokhorovka,...

, a major engagement
Battle of Prokhorovka
The Battle of Prokhorovka was fought on the Eastern Front during the Second World War as part of the Battle of Kursk in the Soviet Union . Principally, the German Wehrmachts Fourth Panzer Army clashed with the Soviet Red Army's 5th Guards Tank Army...

 between Soviet
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 and German
Nazi Germany
Nazi Germany , also known as the Third Reich , but officially called German Reich from 1933 to 1943 and Greater German Reich from 26 June 1943 onward, is the name commonly used to refer to the state of Germany from 1933 to 1945, when it was a totalitarian dictatorship ruled by...

 forces which is widely believed by historians to have been the largest tank battle in history and was the last major German offensive mounted against the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

.

Attractions


The oldest building in Kursk is the upper church of the Trinity Monastery, a good example of the transition style characteristic for Peter the Great
Peter I of Russia
Peter the Great, Peter I or Pyotr Alexeyevich Romanov Dates indicated by the letters "O.S." are Old Style. All other dates in this article are New Style. ruled the Tsardom of Russia and later the Russian Empire from until his death, jointly ruling before 1696 with his half-brother, Ivan V...

's early reign. The oldest lay building is the so-called Romodanovsky Chamber, although it was erected in all probability in the mid-18th century, when the Romodanovsky family had ceased to exist.

The city cathedral was built between 1752 and 1778 in the splendid Baroque
Baroque architecture
Baroque architecture is a term used to describe the building style of the Baroque era, begun in late sixteenth century Italy, that took the Roman vocabulary of Renaissance architecture and used it in a new rhetorical and theatrical fashion, often to express the triumph of the Catholic Church and...

 style and was decorated so sumptuously that many art historians attributed it to Bartolomeo Rastrelli
Bartolomeo Rastrelli
Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli was an Italian architect naturalized Russian. He developed an easily recognizable style of Late Baroque, both sumptuous and majestic...

. Although Rastrelli's authorship is out of the question, the cathedral is indeed the most impressive monument of Elizabethan Baroque not to be commissioned by the imperial family or built in the imperial capital.

The cathedral has two stories, with the lower church consecrated to St. Sergius of Radonezh
Sergius of Radonezh
Venerable Sergius of Radonezh , also transliterated as Sergey Radonezhsky or Serge of Radonezh, was a spiritual leader and monastic reformer of medieval Russia. Together with Venerable Seraphim of Sarov, he is one of the Russian Orthodox Church's most highly venerated saints.-Early life:The date of...

 and the upper one — to the Theotokos of Kazan. The upper church is noted for an intricate icon screen which took 16 years to complete. The three-storey cathedral bell tower derives peculiar interest from the fact that Seraphim of Sarov
Seraphim of Sarov
Saint Seraphim of Sarov , born Prokhor Moshnin , is one of the most renowned Russian monks and mystics in the Orthodox Church. He is generally considered the greatest of the 19th century startsy and, arguably, the first...

, whose father took part in construction works, survived an accidental fall from its top floor at the age of 7. The Resurrection Church is also shown where St. Seraphim was baptized.

The monastery cathedral of the Sign (1816–26) is another imposing edifice, rigorously formulated in the purest Neoclassical
Neoclassical architecture
Neoclassical architecture was an architectural style produced by the neoclassical movement that began in the mid-18th century, manifested both in its details as a reaction against the Rococo style of naturalistic ornament, and in its architectural formulas as an outgrowth of some classicizing...

 style, with a cupola measuring 20 meters in diameter and rising 48 meters high. The interior was formerly as rich as coloured marbles, gilding, and frescoes could make it. During the Soviet period, the cathedral was desecrated, four lateral domes and twin belltowers over the entrance pulled down. There are plans to restore the church to its former glory.

The modern city is a home for several universities: Kursk State Medical University
Kursk State Medical University
Kursk State Medical University is a Russia Government University of higher professional education and ministry on health and social medicine...

, State Technical University, Kursk State University
Kursk State University
Kursk State University is Kursk's oldest higher educational institution, founded in 1934 as Kursk State Pedagogical Institute, later in 1994 transformed into Kursk State Pedagogical University and has a current status since 2003.-University today:Today, the University is a science and education...

 (former Pedagogical University) and Agricultural Academy, as well as the private Regional Open Social Institute (ROSI). There are also modern shrines and memorials commemorating the Battle of Kursk
Battle of Kursk
The Battle of Kursk took place when German and Soviet forces confronted each other on the Eastern Front during World War II in the vicinity of the city of Kursk, in the Soviet Union in July and August 1943. It remains both the largest series of armored clashes, including the Battle of Prokhorovka,...

, both in the city and in Prokhorovka.

The Command Station Bunker & Museum was built specifically in memorial of the courageous Russian T-34
T-34
The T-34 was a Soviet medium tank produced from 1940 to 1958. Although its armour and armament were surpassed by later tanks of the era, it has been often credited as the most effective, efficient and influential design of World War II...

 tank units that fought in the Battle of Kursk
Battle of Kursk
The Battle of Kursk took place when German and Soviet forces confronted each other on the Eastern Front during World War II in the vicinity of the city of Kursk, in the Soviet Union in July and August 1943. It remains both the largest series of armored clashes, including the Battle of Prokhorovka,...

, where a T-34 tank is on display. Over 6,000 armored vehicles fought in close range over the open territory near Kursk in 1943. This battle stopped the German advance into the Kursk Salient, and was a turning point in WWII on the Eastern Front.

Kursk played a role in the Cold War
Cold War
The Cold War was the continuing state from roughly 1946 to 1991 of political conflict, military tension, proxy wars, and economic competition between the Communist World—primarily the Soviet Union and its satellite states and allies—and the powers of the Western world, primarily the United States...

 as host to Khalino air base.

Nearby is Tsentralno-Chernozemny Zapovednik, a large section of steppe soil that has never been plowed. It is used for a variety of research purposes.

Transport



Kursk is located on a major railway line between Moscow and Kharkov, with trains also linking the city to Voronezh and Kiev. Kursk Vostochny Airport
Kursk Vostochny Airport
Vostochny Airport is an interceptor aircraft base in Kursk Oblast, Russia located 7 km east of Kursk. It is a medium-sized base 4 miles northeast of Kursk. Several alert pads, with civilian tarmac on other side of airfield.Khalino was home to:...

 provides domestic flights. Public transport includes busses trolleybuses and trams.

Culture and sports


Kursk State University is home to the Russian Chamber Orchestra, under the direction of conductor and trumpet soloist Sergei Proskourin. The orchestra performs regularly, tours internationally and has produced multiple CDs.

Pushkin Theater located in the center of the city. It has permanent company as well as visiting shows.

Twin towns/sister cities


Kursk is twinned
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

 with:
Zweibrücken
Zweibrücken
Zweibrücken is a city in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, on the Schwarzbach river.- Name :Zweibrücken appears in Latin texts as Geminus Pons and Bipontum, in French texts as Deux-Ponts. The name derives from Middle High German Zweinbrücken...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 Speyer
Speyer
Speyer is a city of Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany with approximately 50,000 inhabitants. Located beside the river Rhine, Speyer is 25 km south of Ludwigshafen and Mannheim. Founded by the Romans, it is one of Germany's oldest cities...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 Witten
Witten
Witten is a university city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. It is the home of the Witten/Herdecke University, the first private university in Germany.-Bordering municipalities:* Bochum* Dortmund* Herdecke* Wetter * Sprockhoevel* Hattingen...

, Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

(since 1990) Niš
Niš
Niš is the largest city of southern Serbia and third-largest city in Serbia . According to the data from 2011, the city of Niš has a population of 177,972 inhabitants, while the city municipality has a population of 257,867. The city covers an area of about 597 km2, including the urban area,...

, Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

Užice
Užice
Užice is a city and municipality in western Serbia, located at the banks of the Đetinja river. It is the administrative center of the Zlatibor District...

, Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

 Tczew
Tczew
Tczew is a town on the Vistula River in Eastern Pomerania, Kociewie, northern Poland with 60,279 inhabitants . It is an important railway junction with a classification yard dating to the Prussian Eastern Railway...

, Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

 Veszprém
Veszprém
Veszprém is one of the oldest urban areas in Hungary, and a city with county rights. It lies approximately north of the Lake Balaton. It is the administrative center of the county of the same name.-Location:...

, Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 Herning
Herning
Herning Municipality is a municipality in Region Midtjylland on the Jutland peninsula in western Denmark. The municipality covers an area of 1,336 km² and a total population of 84,208...

, Denmark
Denmark
Denmark is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. The countries of Denmark and Greenland, as well as the Faroe Islands, constitute the Kingdom of Denmark . It is the southernmost of the Nordic countries, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway, and bordered to the south by Germany. Denmark...

Chern, Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

 Sumy
Sumy
* 1897 - 70.53% Ukrainians, 24.1% Russians, 2.6% Jewish, 2.67% others* 1926 - 80.7% Ukrainians, 11.8% Russians, 5.5% Jewish, 2% others* 1959 - 79% Ukrainians, 20% Russians, 1% others...

, Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

 Dębno
Debno
Dębno is a town in Myślibórz County, West Pomeranian Voivodeship, Poland. It has a population of 13,863 . The Dębno oil field is located near to the town.-Twin towns — sister cities:Dębno is twinned with:* Strausberg - Germany...

, Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...


Honors

  • A minor planet
    Minor planet
    An asteroid group or minor-planet group is a population of minor planets that have a share broadly similar orbits. Members are generally unrelated to each other, unlike in an asteroid family, which often results from the break-up of a single asteroid...

     3073 Kursk
    3073 Kursk
    3073 Kursk is a main-belt asteroid discovered on September 24, 1979 by N. Chernykh at Nauchnyj.- External links :...

     discovered by Soviet
    Soviet Union
    The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

     astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh
    Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh
    Nikolay Stepanovich Chernykh was a Soviet and Russian astronomer.Chernykh was born in the city of Usman' in Voronezh Oblast...

     in 1979 is named after the city.
  • The Russian submarine Kursk
    Russian submarine K-141 Kursk
    K-141 Kursk was an Oscar-II class nuclear-powered cruise missile submarine of the Russian Navy, lost with all hands when it sank in the Barents Sea on August 12, 2000...

     was named after the city.

Prominent residents

  • Georgy Sviridov
    Georgy Sviridov
    Georgy Vasilyevich Sviridov was a Soviet Russian neoromantic composer....

    , composer
    Composer
    A composer is a person who creates music, either by musical notation or oral tradition, for interpretation and performance, or through direct manipulation of sonic material through electronic media...

  • Alexander Deyneka
    Alexander Deyneka
    Aleksandr Aleksandrovich Deyneka was a Soviet Russian painter, graphic artist and sculptor, regarded as one of the most important Russian modernist figurative painters of the first half of the 20th century....

    , painter
    Painting
    Painting is the practice of applying paint, pigment, color or other medium to a surface . The application of the medium is commonly applied to the base with a brush but other objects can be used. In art, the term painting describes both the act and the result of the action. However, painting is...

    , sculptor
    Sculpture
    Sculpture is three-dimensional artwork created by shaping or combining hard materials—typically stone such as marble—or metal, glass, or wood. Softer materials can also be used, such as clay, textiles, plastics, polymers and softer metals...

  • Aleksandr Rutskoy, politician
  • Seraphim of Sarov
    Seraphim of Sarov
    Saint Seraphim of Sarov , born Prokhor Moshnin , is one of the most renowned Russian monks and mystics in the Orthodox Church. He is generally considered the greatest of the 19th century startsy and, arguably, the first...

    , monk and mystic
  • The Tolmachevy Twins
    The Tolmachevy Twins
    Anastasiya and Maria Tolmachovy are twins and child singers from the Russian city of Kursk...

    , singers
  • Aleksandr Povetkin, Olympic Super-Heavyweight Boxing Champion
  • Alexey Ivanovich Borozdin
    Alexey Ivanovich Borozdin
    Alexey Ivanovich Borozdin was born on 29 March 1937 in the city of Kursk .He graduated from the Kursk Music College in 1957, then studied in the L'vov Music School until 1961, when he dropped out for a teaching career and did not complete his formal music education until 1976, when he graduated...

    , musical therapist
  • Vyacheslav Klykov
    Vyacheslav Klykov
    Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Klykov was a Russian sculptor who specialized in public monuments to key figures of national history and culture....

    , sculptor
  • Nikita Khrushchev
    Nikita Khrushchev
    Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev led the Soviet Union during part of the Cold War. He served as First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964, and as Chairman of the Council of Ministers, or Premier, from 1958 to 1964...

    , born nearby

Websites



  • http://www.kurskmed.com/en/ about Kursk State Medical University
  • http://www.kursk-uni.ru/pdf/ksu.pdf about Kursk State University
  • http://kurskmusic.ru/ about Kursk music events
  • http://gai46.ru/ Kursk road police dept
  • http://kursk2.ru/ Kursk social network / online community
  • http://www.wild-russia.org/bioregion3/tsent-chern/3_tsen-chern.htm about Biosphere reserve