Historical building in the Empire style which originally was built to house the two main governance bodies of the Russian Empire - Directing Senate and the Holy Synod. It was built in 1829-1834 under the project of Carlo Rossi and A.E. Shtaubert.
The Senate and the Synod originally settled down in the building of Twelve boards. The fakhverkovy house of the lightest prince Menshikov stood the first construction on a place of present buildings of the Senate and the Synod. After its disgrace the house on Neva Embankment carried over the vice-chancellor A. I. Osterman, and in 1744 was granted by Elizabeth Petrovna to the chancellor A. P. Bestuzhevu-Ryumin for whom built construction in Baroque style. In 1763, after accession to the throne of Catherine II, Bestuzheva-Ryumin's house passed into treasury, and into this building reconstructed by the architect of A. F. by whist, the Senate moved. In the 1780-1790th years Bestuzheva-Ryumin's baroque house was again reconstructed, and his facades received the new architectural processing typical for the Russian classicism. The name of the author of the project of reorganization of the building remains to unknown. Judging by saved in a collection of the museum of Academy of Arts to the drawing of the western facade of the building, the project was developed by the architect I. E. Starov.
On a place of the present building of the Synod in the XVIII century there was a house купчихи Kusovnikova.
Senate and Synod are two separate buildings, united by a triumphal arch. Arch symbolized the unity of church and state, it is decorated with the sculptural group "Justice and Godliness." Bas-reliefs and high reliefs around the triumphal arch show the history of Russian legislation: bas-relief "Civil Law", busts of Peter I and Catherine II, bas-relief "The Law of the Lord", bas-relief "Natural Law."
The Russian State Historical Archive is located in these buildings from 1925 till 2006. The Russian Constitutional Court is housed in the former Senate building since May 2008, and the Presidential Library named by B.N. Yeltsin is placed in Synod building since 2009, in which the Patriarch private quarters and the head of state apartments are located.
The Senate Square which is situated in front of the building of Senate and Synod changed its name for three times. The first name of the square was Senate Square but when The Bronze Horseman monument was established in the middle of the square in 1782 it was renamed and became Peter’s Square. In 1925 it was renamed Decembrists Square to commemorate the Decembrist Revolt, which took place there in 1825. The first name Senate Square was given back to the square in 2008.
For visiting The Presidential Library named by B. N. Yeltsin it is necessary to sign up at its official website.