Famous building

Academy of Sciences


University emb., 5


Famous buildings


Years of foundation



J. Quarenghi



The building of the Academy of Sciences was erected in 1783-1789 by the project of the famous architect Giacomo Quarenghi. This is one of the first works of the architect in Russia and a sample of strict classicism, which is characterized by absolute symmetry of the architectural composition, perfect proportions, monumentality of forms, clarity of drawing details.

The central part of the main facade, open to the expanses of the Neva, is decorated with an eight-column portico with a triangular pediment. The high ground floor is faced with granite. Wide granite stairs lead to the main entrance area that protrudes beyond the facade line.

From the side of the courtyard in the second floor stands out a semi-circular "Venetian" window with narrow rectangular windows on both sides. This window, knocked out of a number of rectangular openings, was arranged at the request of the President of the Academy of Sciences, Princess Ye.R. Dashkova. Quarenghi was unhappy with such interference in the project, convincing Dashkova that “there are no windows of a Venetian type in the approved project”, and even withdrew from the completion of construction works, but in the end this innovation was implemented.

In accordance with the canons of classicism, absolute symmetry reigns in the construction of interiors, which were subjected to repeated alterations. Thus, the conference hall was decorated with Corinthian columns, a sculpted frieze and paintings in the 1790s.

The decoration of the main staircase and the conference hall, which is located in the center of the building, overlooks the courtyard, has survived to our time. The relief frieze of the work of sculptor Karl Goffert tells about the events of the reign of Catherine II. In 1925, the mosaic panel “Poltava Battle”, created by M.V. Lomonosov in the 1760s was installed.

It is interesting that at the time of the construction of the Academy of Sciences building, the Neva Embankment in this place was wooden. It got granite only in 1810, designed by Jean-Francois Tom de Thomon.

Currently, the St. Petersburg Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences is located in the building of the Academy of Sciences.


The building of the Academy of Sciences is included in the excursion program of the city project "Open City". This is a joint project of the St. Petersburg City Branch of the All-Russian Society for the Protection of Monuments of History and Culture and the Committee on State Control, Use and Protection of Monuments of History and Culture. It is implemented with the support of the Government of St. Petersburg, so that all participants can attend events for free.

The mission of the “Open City” project is to acquaint the residents and guests of St. Petersburg with the unique cultural heritage of our city, open the doors of the most beautiful mansions, palaces, estates, iconic buildings of industrial architecture that were previously inaccessible for widespread visits.

Any Russian citizen who enrolls on the project website can attend the events of the “Open City”. Activities include various types of excursions (walking, bus, cycling), walks on retrotransport, historical quests, lectures on history, architecture and culture of St. Petersburg, master classes for children and adults.

На комфортабельных однопалубных и двухпалубных теплоходах
экскурсионных круизов по Неве, рекам и каналам
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