You might call me crazy, but I like to visit ancient cemeteries because of their historical value and interesting monuments. Are there any other lovers like me out there? 😉
Kalvariysky cemetery is the oldest graveyard in Minsk. The exact date of the foundation of the cemetery is unknown. Until 1830, it was only a Catholic cemetery, but later the representatives of other faiths were also buried there.
The buried at the cemetery are:
– Napoleonic soldiers;
– the captured Austrian soldiers who died during the First World War;
– the Polish soldiers who died during the Soviet-Polish war of 1919-1920;
– Soviet soldiers who died during the Great Patriotic War (142 mass graves);
– 3,000 Jews from the Minsk ghetto (burial times of World War II);
– victims of revolutionary terror;
– politicians, poets, artists and many others.
In the old days when the Communists were fighting against religion, this cemetery with its Catholic chapel was almost the only refuge of the Catholics of Minsk and its environs! In addition to this, the Catholics were able to preserve and convey to us a lot of ancient tombstones and crypts of historical and cultural value, contrary to the prevailing spirituality and disregard of the authorities.
Today, the cemetery is bright and well maintained, in harmony with such communications as the subway and land transport. So I recommend visiting this ancient place to everybody who loves antiquities!