The first mentions of Suzdal date back to 1024, it is this date that is considered to be the date of its foundation, although the Slavic tribes settled here no later than the 9th century. According to legend, in 990 these places were visited by Bishop Fyodor, a native of Greece, who baptized Grand Duke Vladimir in 987. At the end of the 10th century, Bishop Fedor traveled around many Slavic lands, preaching the Christian faith among the pagans. On the site of modern Suzdal, Fyodor built a temple of the Assumption of the Mother of God, where he himself conducted services.
It is not easy to determine exactly how this ancient city got its name. Until now, researchers have no unified point of view, despite the fact that there are a huge number of very different versions. For example, academician A. A. Shakhmatov believed that the roots should be sought in the Finno-Ugric languages that inhabited these lands long before the appearance of the Slavs. According to another hypothesis, the word "Suzdal" comes from the Old Russian "szdati", which means "made of clay". Presumably, the first fortress was protected by clay walls.
Like other cities located on the outskirts of North-Eastern Russia, Suzdal for many years was a fortress, protection from the raids of nomads. During the reign of Yuri Dolgoruky, Suzdal became the center of the Rostov-Suzdal principality. In the middle of the 12th century, Andrei Bogolyubsky moved the capital to Vladimir.
The year 1238 became a tragic page in the history of the city, when the army of Khan Batu approached Suzdal. Enemies, having burst into the fortress, almost completely cut out and captured the local population, only a few managed to survive. It took more than ten years to restore Suzdal. In 1262, an uprising broke out in the city against the Mongol yoke. Alexander Nevsky was able to save the city from a new devastation, who left for the Horde and managed to convince the khan to save Suzdal.
As Moscow grew stronger, Suzdal was losing its political significance more and more. In 1445, Dmitry Shemyaka, having seized power in Moscow, concluded an agreement with the Suzdal princes to restore their former independence. But five years later, when Dmitry Shemyaka had already suffered defeat, the treaty lost its force, since 1450 the city became part of the Moscow principality.
Suzdal was famous for its gardeners and gardeners. The local cherries were sent to Moscow. The gardeners Pukhovs, Kuvshinnikovs and Zhdanovs were famous not only in their city, but also far beyond its borders. And Suzdal horseradish was appreciated for its pungency and aroma. He was taken to the capital of the Russian Empire, St. Petersburg and even abroad. Every year on September 23, a large fair was held in the city, which attracted merchants from all over Russia.
At the end of the 19th century, when there was massive railway construction in Russia, railways bypassed this ancient city and it was no longer part of developed economic centers. At that time, it had a population of about 8, 000 people. Over the past hundred and a half years, the number of townspeople has not increased much, now there are less than 10, 000 inhabitants in Suzdal.
It is interesting that the railway has not yet been laid to Suzdal. It is more convenient to get here by car. In 1871, the Suzdal merchant Belov took the initiative to lay a railway line to the city. But, the provincial leadership considered this project too costly. Moreover, they have "only local significance". Subsequently, the Suzdal people raised this issue more than once, by 1913 the project for the construction of the Vladimir - Suzdal branch was already practically approved, but the First World War prevented it.
In 1964, in Suzdal, film director Konstantin Voinov filmed his famous comedy "The Marriage of Balzaminov", where the main role was played by the legendary Soviet actor Georgy Vitsin. On an ancient wooden house on Staraya Street, you can still see a modest wooden plaque announcing that the shooting took place in this very courtyard. According to the plot, the film takes place in Moscow in the 19th century. But, in the capital, such a quiet courtyard could not be found, but the provincial Suzdal came up perfectly. The tallest buildings in Suzdal are two-story.
July is the time of mass ripening of cucumbers in Central Russia. It was at this time that Suzdal became the venue for the Cucumber Festival. The State Vladimir-Suzdal Museum-Reserve, where the festive event is taking place, receives thousands of visitors. In 2015, the Cucumber Festival
The All-Russian competition was recognized as "The best event in the field of gastronomic tourism".
For a long time it was believed that one of the leaders of the people's militia in 1612, Prince Dmitry Mikhailovich Pozharsky, was buried in Moscow in the Kazan Cathedral. But modern researchers are inclined to believe that the hero's ashes rest in Suzdal on the territory of the Spaso-Efimiev Monastery, where the Pozharsky family burial vault is located.