The construction of St. Petersburg began on May 16, 1703 on a small island called Yenisaari (Zayachiy) in Finnish. And the Swedes called it Lust-Eiland (Merry Island). The name Saint Petersburg was officially approved on June 29, 1703, when the Day of Peter and Paul was celebrated. The city got its name in honor of the Apostle Peter, who is considered the heavenly patron of the Northern capital.
11 interesting facts about the city of St. Petersburg
- Even demographers find it difficult to name the exact number of cities on our planet, the population of which exceeds one million people. According to various estimates, there are from 300 to 500 in the world. But one fact is beyond doubt: St. Petersburg is the northernmost of all megacities. It is also ranked as one of the most attractive tourist cities in the world, according to the UN. The annual number of tourists exceeds the number of residents of St. Petersburg itself.
- By 1725, when the founder of the city, Peter the Great, died, there were about 40 thousand inhabitants in St. Petersburg. Petersburg became a "millionaire" at the turn of the eighties-nineties of the XIX century. And now the city on the Neva has more than 5, 000, 000 inhabitants. The birth of the "jubilee" resident was registered on September 22, 2012. St. Petersburg alone has about the same number of inhabitants as in the whole of Finland.
- In terms of population, St. Petersburg is the second city in Russia, second only to Moscow. And in Europe, according to this indicator, it is the third, behind even London. Istanbul is also ahead of St. Petersburg in terms of the number of inhabitants, but this city is located in two parts of the world at once - Europe and Asia.
- The city has changed its name several times. From 1703 to 1914 it was called St. Petersburg. But, at the very beginning of the First World War, it was decided to change the "foreign" name of the city to Petrograd. In January 1924, the leader of the world proletariat, Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, died. At the Second All-Union Congress of Soviets, it was decided that the city would now be called Leningrad. And just before the collapse of the Soviet Union, in September 1991, a referendum was held, as a result of which the city was returned to its original name St. Petersburg.
- The construction of St. Petersburg required a huge amount of material. First of all - a stone. In 1714, Peter the Great even introduced a special tax, which was in effect for more than fifty years: everyone arriving in the city by "dry" route had to bring three stones with a total weight of at least 5 pounds. Even more burdensome was the collection from those who arrived by sea - three stones weighing 10 to 30 pounds. In addition, all over Russia it was forbidden to erect buildings of stone, St. Petersburg badly needed it.
- Floods are a common phenomenon for St. Petersburg; during its history the city has experienced them more than 300 times. The largest happened in 1824, when the water level rose by 4 meters 21 centimeters. Most often, floods are caused by westerly winds that collide with the opposite course of the Neva River. On some streets of the city there are memorial plaques indicating the water level during the disaster of 1824.
- Plates indicating streets appeared in St. Petersburg in 1768, for the cities of Russia then it was an innovation. The corresponding order was made by Empress Catherine II, who ordered Chief of Police General N.I. Chicherin to install "plaques" with the names of streets and lanes in two languages - Russian and German. The tablets had to be made "cleaner", but without any special decorations.
- On September 11, 1873, electric lanterns equipped with incandescent lamps of the Russian electrical engineer A.N.Lodygin's system were lit on Odessa Street in St. Petersburg. At that time, none of the cities in the world had such amenities. Now on this street there are two memorial plaques and a bronze monument to the lamplighter.
- It turns out that the problem of waste disposal in St. Petersburg was relevant in the second half of the 18th century. After the completion of the construction of the Winter Palace in 1762, the entire Palace Square was literally littered with construction waste. Emperor Peter III found an original solution to the problem, allowed the townspeople to take whatever they liked, and absolutely free of charge. In a short time, the area was cleared.
- Despite the fact that the founder of St. Petersburg, Peter the First, was a heavy smoker, smoking was strictly prohibited on the streets of the city until the middle of the 19th century. Violators had to pay a hefty fine. This was due to the fact that in St. Petersburg there was a massive construction, including wood. A big fire could have started from one cigarette butt. The ban was lifted only in July 1865, about which local newspapers informed the townspeople.
- In the Admiralteisky district of the city, there is Kokushkin lane, which is a little over 30 meters long. The lane got its name from the name of the merchant Vasily Kokushkin, who once kept a drinking establishment here.