Moscow, the capital of today's Russia. Moscow, one of the capitals of world consumerism...what a contrast with the city we knew just 20 years ago, the capital of world Communism. If you want to visit this city of a thousand faces, buy an Azerbaijan Airlines ticket...the money you will save, you can better spend once you are there!
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Moscow stands on the banks of the Moskva River and occupies an area of 2,561.50 km². With more than 12 million inhabitants (18 million in the metropolitan area), in addition to being the most populous city in the country, it is the first city in Europe by population and area, and the residence of about one tenth of the Russian citizens. It is therefore the tenth most populous city in the world and, due to its harsh continental climate, the northernmost and coldest megalopolis on Earth. Moscow is one of the largest global urban economies, being ranked as a global alpha city, as well as being one of the fastest growing tourist destinations according to the MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index. [extract from Wikipedia.it]
The first historical reference to Moscow is dated 1147, when it was an obscure city of a small province. In 1156, Prince Jurij Dolgorukij fortified the city, encircling it with walls. After the looting of 1237-1238, when the Mongols razed it to the ground, killing all its inhabitants, Moscow was rebuilt and became the capital of an independent principality. In 1380, Prince Dimitri Donskoj of Moscow led a Pan-Russian army to an important victory over the Mongols at the Battle of Kulikovo. At that time, Moscow took a leading role in liberating Russia from Mongol domination.
In 1480 Ivan III of Russia finally subtracted control of Moscow from the Tatars and handed over the city to the Russians; the city then became the capital of an empire destined to enclose, in addition to Russia and Siberia, many other lands. Ivan III then married Sophia Paleologa, nephew of the last emperor of Constantinople, thus strengthening the importance of the city. At this point the heart of the Orthodox Church shifted from ancient Byzantium to Moscow. The new political and religious position reached by Moscow on the international level led to the idea that the city was the third Rome.
In 1613 an assembly of the empire elected Tsar Michael Romanov, starting the Romanov dynasty, destined to reign over the enormous Russian empire until the "October Revolution" of 1917.
Between 1918 and 1991, Moscow was the capital of the USSR and then remained as the capital of the Russian Federation, arising from the disintegration of the Soviet Union.