Russia Culture Symbols Tsar Cannon

Tsar Cannon

In 1586, the foundry man Andrei Chokhov (Chekhov) cast the world’s largest cannon in Moscow. The barrel was 5.34 meters long, weighed an impressive forty tons and had an incredible calibre of 890 millimetres. The weapon was originally created with the purpose of defending the Kremlin. It was called the Tsar Cannon as the bronze barrel bore a relief of Feodor I. The cannon was never actually fired and has remained on display in the Kremlin ever since. In 1627, it was moved to the Place of Execution, where it became an original symbol of the Russian state. The Tsar Cannon stands on an enormous gun carriage cast in 1835. Andrei Chokhov created over twenty cannons, each of which had its own name – the Bear Cannon, Wolf Cannon, Fox Cannon or Achilles Cannon. He also designed a multi-barrel cannon and a gun with a special wedge-shaped breech mechanism. When German armaments magnate Alfred Krupp visited the Artillery Museum in St Petersburg in 1877, he stated that the latter gun was two centuries ahead of its time.

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