St. Petersburg State University

DESTINATIONS russia st petersburg vasilievsky island st-petersburg-state-university

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St. Petersburg State University

Tsar Alexander I founded this university in 1819, and today it's one of Russia's leading institutions of higher learning with an enrollment of more than 20,000. Russian president Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev graduated from the university's law faculty. Much of the campus dates to the 18th-century reign of Peter the Great. The bright red baroque building on the right (if you're walking west along the embankment) is the Twelve Colleges Building, designed by Domenico Trezzini and completed in 1741. The next building in the university complex is the Rector's Wing, where a plaque attests that the great Russian poet Alexander Blok (d. 1921) was born here in 1880. The third building along the embankment is a former palace built for Peter II (1715–30), Peter the Great's grandson, who lived and ruled only briefly.

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