Boris and Gleb Cathedral was founded as a family burial vault of the Davidovich Princes, and is a typical example of Chernigiv architecture of the XII century.The construction lasted from 1120 to 1123.
The cathedral is a static structure with impressive elegance and monumentality.
During the construction of the cathedral a special kind of brick - plinfy- and skillful brickwork was used, decorated with various patterns (stone carving). The facade was also decorated with a limestone relief floral ornamentation.
The presence of griffins in the decoration is characteristic of the original Chernigiv architecture of the XII century.
Today, a part of the supporting structures is replaced by the analogues made of modern materials, while the original pieces are displayed in the museum exhibition of the National reserve "Ancient Chernigiv".
Originally, the plan of the cathedral contemplated the construction of arkasols – special niches for burial, but due to the multiple reconstructions the original design has been drastically changed.
During its long existence, the Boris and Gleb Cathedral was not only the Orthodox shrine. In the first half of the XVII century, when the Chernigiv lands were part of Poland, the cathedral was transformed into the Dominican church.
At the end of the XVII century, the cathedral was reconstructed in the Baroque style.
During the Second World War, the shrine was partly destroyed. The following post-WWII reconstruction was conducted in the middle of the XX century by a project of the well-know architect M. Holostenko. After that, the cathedral became a part of the National historical sanctuary “Ancient Chernigiv”.
Nowadays, the Borisoglebsky Monastery is a museum that hosts ongoing exhibitions devoted to the icon painting. All the visitors can see there a silver vermail Holy Gates (weight about 50 kg) that were made at the beginning of the ХVІІІ century to order of the famous Ukrainian Hetman and patron Ivan Mazepa.
On the territory of the monastery there is a cemetery where a lot of famous religious figures were buried: Lazar Baranovich, the Saint Bishop Feodosy Uglitsky, Amvrosy Dubnevich and Feofil Ignatovich.