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Monument to Catherine II in Odessa

Monument to Catherine IIMonument to Catherine the Great and her companions - the founders of Odessa - de Ribas, de Volan, Zubov and Potemkin rises at Ekaterininskaya Square in Odessa. It was erected in 1900, but 20 years later, in 1920, dismantled. The restoration of the monument was carried out in 2007 and caused political resonance.

In 1794 Catherine II started the construction of a new port city, Odessa. Slightly more than 200 years later, the grateful residents of the city erected a monument to the Empress on the square of shape of a triangle with same name. As soon as the Bolsheviks came to power, the monument was dismantled, the statues of de Ribas, de Volan, Zubov and Potemkin were transported to the museum of local history, and the Catherine the Greatstatue of Catherine the Great was partially destroyed. In 1965 on the Ekaterininskaya Square there was erected the new monument dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the uprising of sailors of Battleship “Potemkin”.

In 2007 the city authorities decided to restore the monument to the founders of Odessa. The project was sponsored by the City Council R. Tarpan. The monument to “Potemkin” sailors, located on the square, was transported to the Tamozhennaya Square, and the statues of Catherine II and her companions were returned to their original location. The main part of the monument is genuine, but the head of the Empress had to be created anew.

The Ukrainian nationalists, who arrived to Odessa, have tried to derail Monument to Catherine II in Odessathe monument’s opening: they burned the effigy of the Empress, and conflicted with police. In October of that year there was held the grand opening of the monument. During the opening there was held the meeting, which embraced the supporters and opponents of the monument’s erection. The nationalists explain their position to the fact that the Empress has dissolved Zaporizhian Sich and has always been "the executioner of the Ukrainian people."

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