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Saint Petersburg

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Alternate meaning: Saint Petersburg, Florida

Saint Petersburg (Sankt Peterburg in Russian; formerly Petrograd from 1914 until January 24, 1924, then Leningrad until 1991) is a city located in north-western Russia on the Baltic Sea. It is a major cultural center of Europe. With over four million inhabitants, it is Russia's second largest city and a major Russian port.

The city was founded in 1703 by Tsar Peter the Great after reconquering the Ingrian land from Sweden, and named after the apostle St. Peter. It was built largely with forced peasant labor in the location of the Swedish fortress of Nyen[?] and later Nöteborg[?], in the marshlands where the river Neva drains into the Gulf of Finland. It was founded to become the new capital of Russia, ensuring Russia's connections with the West.

During World War I, the name Saint Petersburg was seen to be too German and the city was renamed Petrograd. In 1917, the Bolshevik Revolution broke out in Petrograd. The nearby German armies forced a move of the capital to Moscow on March 5, 1918, which has been the capital of Russia ever since. In 1924, the city was renamed Leningrad, in honour of recently deceased Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin. During World War II, it was besieged by the German army from September 8, 1941 until January 27, 1944 (though a land link to the rest of Russia was established on January 18, 1943). Some 800,000 of the city's three million inhabitants are estimated to have perished.

The original name - Saint Petersburg - was restored after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. However, the name of the Oblast (administrative province) of which the city is the capital remains Leningrad.

Famous landmarks in Saint Petersburg are the Hermitage Museum displaying some of the most valuable paintings in the world, which includes the Tsars' Winter Palace, as well as the Cathedral of Saint Isaac[?], the Alexander Column[?] and Tikhvin Cemetery at the Alexander Nevsky Monastery.

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The text below is from Russian Wikipedia. It needs to be properly merged with the main article

St.-Petersburg (Petrograd in 1914-1924,Leningrad in 1924-1991), the city of federal importance, the subject of Russian federation, the most important after Moscow industrial, scientific and cultural center of Russia, the center of Leningrad region. It is located on the banks of Neva river, near Finland Gulf and on the islands of the delta of Neva.

More than 45 rivers, sleeves, ducts, also, about 40 artificial channels (Obvodny, Griboyedova, etc.) are located within the boundaries of the city. There are 4436,7 thousand inhabitants (5003,8 thousand inhabitants, including the populated areas, subordinated to the city administration). The city hosts a large transport knot (railway and highways), seaport (in the Finland Gulf of Baltic sea) and river ports (in the delta of Neva ), the terminal point Of Volgo-Baltic waterway, Pulkovo airport (domestic and international). Subway since 1955. Major center of machine building, including power equipment construction, machinery, shipyards, instrument manufacture, ferrous and nonferrous metallurgy (production of aluminum alloys), chemical, light, printing trade.

St.-Petersburg is the home of the scientific center of the Russian Academy of Sciences, numerous science and research institutions, more than 43 institute of higher education (including 3 universities and the conservatory), over 120 museums and their branches (notably, Hermitage, the Russian museum, the Central Navy, Science, Russian academy of arts, urban sculpture, history Of St.-Petersburg, anthropology and ethnography and more). 18 theaters (including Mariinskiy theater, opera and the ballet of the name M.P. Of musorgskogo, drama of the name A.S. of Pushkin, Bol'shoy dramatic of the name G.A. Of tovstonogova, comedy of the name N.P. Of akimova, small dramatic, opened, "Baltic house", the name V.F. Of komissarzhevskoy);the largest libraries (name M.E. Of saltykova?shchedrina, the Russian Academy of Sciences, etc.).It is based into 1703 Peters I .In 1712 ? 1918 capital of Russia .

Revolution of 1905-07, February revolution of 1917, October Revolution of 1917 all initiated in the city. During the years of World War II the city withstood the 29 months long siege by German troops. The majestic appearance of St.-Petersburg is determined by architectural ensembles, strict straight streets, vast spaces, gardens and parks, river and numerous channels, embankments, bridges, figured fences, monumental and decorative sculptures. Architectural ensembles of 18-19 centuries include: Petropavlovsk fortress, Alexandro-Nevsky monastery , Smolny institute, Palace square with the Winter palace, Nevsky Prospekt, the building of stock exchange on Vasilyevskiy island, Dekabristov square with the monument of Peter I (erected 1782), Rossi street and the Ostrovskiy square, square of Arts. In 1950-80 there were erected new residential areas, administrative and public buildings, the memorial complex on Piskarevsky cemetery was created (1960).The historical center of St.-Peterburg is included in the UNESCO list of world heritage.

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