St. Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow was built by order of Ivan the Terrible to commemorate the capture of Astrakhan and Kazan. Known as the "Church of the Trinity", the initial building consisted of a total of eight separate churches that were organized around a ninth. In 1588 a tenth church was erected in order to venerate a local saint named Vasili (Basil).
In the 16th and 17th centuries it began to be considered as an earthly image of a heavenly Jerusalem . The building was designed in the shape of bonfire flames that soar into the sky. There is no other building like it in Russian architecture. During the time of the Soviet Union, the cathedral was the victim of terrorist attacks. It was confiscated from the Russian Orthodox community and used as a part of the State Historical Museum beginning in 1928.
Today, it has become the most important part of Red Square and a World Heritage Site since 1990. The name "Red Square" comes from the Russian word " Krasnaya ", which means "red" and "beautiful". It was used for the first time to designate the Cathedral of Saint Basil, and then the name extended to the entire square.
Moscow is not the only Russian city that has this type of "Red Squares". There are several cities in Russia in which the main squares are also called "Red". The architecture of the building and the multitude of colors that form it, make the church a universally valuable monument, unique and without comparison.