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Moscow (English)
Москва (Russian)
-  Federal city  -
Moscow collage new2.jpg
Top: Spasskaya Clocktower, St. Basil's Cathedral
Center: Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, Ostankino Tower, Monument to Yuri Dolgoruki, Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building, House on Embankment by Boris Iofan
Bottom: Moscow International Business Center
Coordinates: 55°45′06″N 37°37′04″E / 55.75167°N 37.61778°E / 55.75167; 37.61778Coordinates: 55°45′06″N 37°37′04″E / 55.75167°N 37.61778°E / 55.75167; 37.61778
Coat of Arms of Moscow.svg
Coat of Arms of Moscow
Flag of Moscow.svg
Flag of Moscow
Federal city DayThe first Saturday and Sunday of September[1]
Political status
Country Russia
(2010 Census preliminary results)[2]
11,514,300 inhabitants
- Rank within Russia 1st
- Urban[2] 100%
Official website
Moscow skyline

Moscow (Moskva) (Russian: Москва́, romanised: Moskva) is the capital of Russia and the country's economic, financial, educational, and transportation centre. It is located on the Moskva River in the Central Federal District, in European Russia. Moscow is the most populous city in Europe, whose population constitutes about 7% of the total Russian population. It is famously known for its Kremlin, built as a fortress in 1367 upon earlier wooden fortifications, and rebuilt in the 15th century, which later included a palace[3] for the Russian Tsars, which now serves as the ceremonial residence of the President of Russia.

Prince George Dolgoruki, son of Vladimir II Monomakh, is said to have founded the city in 1147, when its name first appears in a Russian chronicle.[4] Anciently this region was populated by so-called Great Russians and known as Muscovy, which had its capital firstly at Novgorod, then Kiev, with Moscow situated in-between. In 1238 the Mongols invaded and burned Moscow. In 1240 they conquered and sacked Kiev.[5] From this year until 1263 Alexander 'Nevski', Prince of Novgorod, ruled Muscovy.[6] Moscow was again twice burned in 1292-3. Muscovy had at this point sunk into the position of a mere vassal State of the Mongol Empire at this point, although Muscovite princes became specially favoured by the Mongol Khans. Gradually Muscovy raised itself up. In 1326 the Metropolitan eventually transferred his See from Vladimir to Moscow, and from that point the interests of the State and the Church became entwined. In 1382, following a rebellion against the Mongols, Moscow was again burned, and in 1408 the Golden Horde again laid siege to the city but this time were bought off by the burghers with a ransom. With the demise of Kiev due to Mongol devastation, war and then occupation by the Lithuanians, for centuries, Moscow replaced Kiev and became the capital of Russia.[7] In 1611 a great portion of the city was again destroyed by fire, when the invading Poles took possession of it under the pretense of defending the inhabitants from the adherents of a Pretender to the Crown. The Black Plague of 1771 diminished the population by thousands, and lastly in 1812, the Moscovites surrendered their city to invading armies of Napoleon.[8]

From the early Russian state of Muscovy grew the Tsarist Russian Empire (to 1917) and, from 1918-1992, the Soviet Union.

Moscow stood for centuries on the major overland trade routes and was always a hub of commerce. It remains a major economic centre and is today home to a large number of Russian billionaires; it was recently named as the most expensive city in the world for expatriate employees.

It is home to many scientific and educational institutions, as well as numerous sports facilities. It possesses a complex transport system that includes the world's busiest metro system - famous for its architecture.


  1. Holidays and significant dates of Moscow. Moscow City Government. Retrieved on 29 September 2010.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Федеральная служба государственной статистики (Federal State Statistics Service) (2011). Предварительные итоги Всероссийской переписи населения 2010 года (Preliminary results of the 2010 All-Russian Population Census) (Russian). Всероссийская перепись населения 2010 года (All-Russia Population Census of 2010). Federal State Statistics Service. Retrieved on 2011-04-25.
  3. Murray, John, Russia, Poland, and Finland, London, 1875, pps:226-238.
  4. Murray, 1875, p.222.
  5. Morfill, W.R., M.A., Russia, London, 2nd edition, 1891, p.38-41.
  6. Howe, S.E., A Thousand Years of Russian History, London, 1917, p.24.
  7. Howe, 1917, p.26.
  8. Murray, 1875, p.222.