Who really built Russian Saint Petersburg? Did they dig it out?


Active member
I never had to resarch so many old germanic/french/whatever words but this is what i got so far.

Topographic depiction of the new main residence and sea-city S.Petersburg including their first erected fortress
which was built by their Czaar Maj. PETRO ALEXIEWITZ - the *self-sustainer* of the Russians (*for lack of a better word*)

In i703, built on the top of the Baltic Sea on numerous islands on the spring of the Neva-Stream, and been provided with a powerful fleet for entrance in trade and shipping for the Russian Nation.

from: BAPTIST HOMANN in Nürnberg

There are interesting bits everywhere!

"to the far right"
CROHN SCHLOT ( Crohn - Kron - Crown) (Schlot - Schloss - Castle)
6 miles away from S Petersburg,
was built in i704 as a port in the middle of the winter.

Well this seems odd. They were able to build it in the middle of the winter. Must have been in such a hurry. The description says clearly in the middle of the winter (singular). Could such a structure be build in a couple cold months?

Additionally it says Finnläendische Gegend- which means Finnish area. There are also Stockrooms, a Hospital and a big brewery on the island.

At the bottom right corner it says Neva or Neu-Schantz jetzo ruinirt (jetzt runiert - now ruined!) and depicting a ruined star fort (flooded with mud maybe? And why JETZT, why now?
(neu is new and Schanz could be Schanze -entrenchment/earthwork/fieldwork)

Largest Park at the big island fort to the west - Baumluftgarten (tree-air-garden) for the presence of all people.

I find it interesting why the autor had to emphasize its for the use of all people.

Bottom left island says Noch unbewohnte Insel - Island without any inhabitants yet.

I can see lots of stuff there, from Inns directly on the shore, to huge ropewalks, mills etc. Multiple catholic churches, a Finnish/Luth and Russian church. A Elephanthouse? (wo ein schöner Elephant stehet - where a nice elephant stands). Appartments dedicated for the copper and ireonforge. Bookprinting and even a big tower to easier navigate the ships entering the docs. Even the gardeners and artists had their own dedicated appartments.

Holy shite!


On 16 May 1703, while looking over sparse marshlands... let’s build a city here, said Peter the Great.

@nothingnew, thank you very much for your translation. Well, we either were totally mislead about their infrastructure and level of technological advancement, or the city was already there, and they simply indoctrinated it.


Active member
No problem. Yet I'm still mind boggled hours later, wondering how they could build a crown castle during one winter.


The thing we mostly underestimate is the number of people that were tortured to death and murdered to achieve this. How many casualties were needed to finish this in a couple months?

Additionally the coloring on the map seems very detailed staying inside the outlines of buildings yet the flag on top of the castle is colored in a weird blue shade and overall does not match the precision of the rest. Why would someone try to hide the fact that the flag was white? o_O


The town of Nyen, which formed around Nyenschantz, became a wealthy trading center and a capital of Swedish Ingria during the 17th century.
On May 1, 1703, Sweden lost Nyenskans to the Russians when the fortress was taken by Peter the Great during the Ingrian campaign of the Great Northern War. In 1703, Peter decided to found Saint Petersburg, a brand new capital city for the Tsardom of Russia
oh wow, once again the war victorious wanted to tell us what faery tales they wanted....
Its clear, and nowdays academic recognized, that a city was here before 1700..
we can see it was already building of high level of engineering. how really big was Nyenskans hard to tell now, we can only assume it was at Least what we see on some maps... seems only star forts survived
only to built one of those monster star fort it's quite a challenge... (and they are on all continents whit exact same style ...)
This is the location of the old Swedish settlement Nyenskans.
It consisted of a fortified town by the creek now named Ochta.
The province Ingria (Swedish:Ingermanland) belonged to Sweden 1617-1721.
The area was originally populated by fhe finnic-ugric Vots, Ingrians
and during the Swedish rule Finns from Carelia.

On May 1, 1703, Sweden lost Nyenskans to the Russians when the fortress was taken by Peter the Great during the Ingrian campaign of the Great Northern War. The site of Nyenskans and Nyen was reformed by Peter into the new city of Schlötburg, meaning "Neck-town" in German, a reference to the long narrow section of the Neva where it was located, with "Schlöt" corresponding to "(funnel) neck, narrows, chimney". Schlötburg stood in contrast to Shlisselburg ("Key-town"), the new name for Nöteborg at the other end of the Neva River, which Peter believed was the "Key to Ingria".
ah ok ,Shlisselburg=nöteborg=nottoborg on 1698 map lol ill be less stupid now )), on this map they just made appear nottoborg/schlötburg but not nyenskans/st petersburg.

In 2009 archélogue said :
In the next two years all archeological research on the site of the future construction of Okhta Centre in Saint Petersburg may be completed, the director of the archeological expedition in the estuary of River Okhta Pyotr Sorokin said.

He added that within two years of archeological works – presently the biggest in the North West of Russia – they managed to do a lot: discovered ramparts of the fortresses of first and the second Nyenskans, and the ancient Swedish fortress Landscrona, which is older than both the Nyenskans, and still deeper, under a sand layer they found a Neolithic settlement site.

“We have found ceramics, stone tools, and three burial mounds there”, Mr. Sorokin reported and pointed out that the digging area is “in fact the Troy of Saint Petersburg”, where archeologists from Saint Petersburg, Volgograd, Perm and Lithuania are working.
Shit man burial mounds seriously ? mmm


Below is a 1562 map which, in my opinion, clearly displays a submerged city in the exact same place where Saint Pteresburg gets "founded" almost 150 years later. Our future Saint Petersburg is somehow in the water, which I guess could explain where the city came from, and how it got built so fast.

Here is c. 1710 or c.1690 (whatever year that makes) map. This one appears to show the city under water, but it assigns it the proper name of Petersburg.
Use the city of Viburg for reference


Well-known member
From here
St.Petersburg Environs
The majority of literary sources begin their description of St. Petersburg's surroundings with the taking of Nienshantz and the year 1703. Even in the best case, only the Oreshek Fortress, the Stolbovo peace treaty, and Prince Aleksandr Nevskij's battle at the mouth of the Izhora river will be mentioned. Here the historians seem unintentionally to forget that when Peter I came to create his window on the West, he arrived not at a deserted swampy shore, but at a place where fortresses had been standing for 500 years prior.

The history of these lands — the Izhorian land in the Vodskaja pjatina (The Novgorod Republic was divided into five administrative divisions, called pjatinas), Ingria, and Ingermanlandia — is full of historical events of the pre-Petrine era. This abundance is amazing for a comparatively small border region. But it was just this border location which turned these places into the grounds for centuries of conflicts between western and eastern civilizations, into a centuries-old battlefield.

Many of the little villages around St. Petersburg are of a much more respectable age than the Northern Capital itself; many have changed names several times. For instance, the village of Korbiselske (indicated on a Swedish map of 1662) is now called Korabsel'ki (near the state farm "Bugry"). And Irinovka — the village after which Russia's first narrow gauge railway was named — had changed its name several times over the course of a century, from Marisel'ka to Orinka to Irinovka.

Unfortunately, much has already been lost, and much is disappearing right before our eyes. But in the forests of the Karelia one can still find stones marking the border of 1323:

"Grand Prince Yurij along with Posadnik (a regional representative of the Novgorod Republic) Afromej and Marshal Avrom and along with all Novgorod hereby and forthwith conclude a Peace with their new-found Brother, Prince of Sweden Manush Orekhovits. With Ambassadors of the Prince of Sweden being: Henrich Djurovits, Geminki Orislovits, Peter Junshin, and Father Vymunder. And with Witnesses to the signing being: Ludovik and Fjodor, Merchants from the Teutonic Shore. And with a Peace being concluded unto all Ages, and with the Holy Cross being so kissed, Grand Prince Yurij along with all Novgorod hereby offer of Love: three Pogosts (an administrative unit consisting of several villages) Sevilaksha, Yaksi, and Ogreba, likewise the Karelian Pogosts. And henceforth the Division and Border shall be: from the Sea alongst the River Sestra, from the Sestra unto the Bog and to the Hill amongst such Bog, unto the River Saja, from the Saja to Solnychnyj Rock, from Solnychnyj Rock through Chermnyj Gorge, from Chermnyj Gorge to Lake Lembo, unto the Bog on Pekhkej, unto the Lake Kangas, unto Purnojarvi, unto ... Yantojarvi, unto Terzhejarvi, unto Sergilakshi, unto Samosalo, unto Zhiti, unto Korelomkoshki, unto Kolemakoshki, unto Patsoeki, unto Kajano Sea, ..." (photocopy of the original text)

However, the few folk and regional museums surrounding our "city of museums" could be counted on your fingers.

I hope that the information on this site will help you learn more about the St. Petersburg environs and will make your jaunts outside the city more interesting and enjoyable.

Sincerely, Aleksej Shvarjov
From the funds of the Russian National Library. Map of Ingermanland: Ivangorod, Pit, Koporye, Noteborg. 1676 Map of former provinces ...

When Sweden was in control of the area, 1676.
BIG map here in 4 parts.
All roads lead to Nyen. Well there is a T junction there.
Map "Plan of Nyen", 1698 - Drawn by J. Meyer on June 29, 1698.
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