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Three rings (wreaths?) symbol in XIX century Russia

Three rings (wreaths?) symbol in XIX century Russia

On some buildings in Moscow (and other cities in European part of Russia) there are carvings of three interconnected wreaths.

For example, some are on the Pushkin Museum building on Prechistenka:

This building was erected around 1814, but unfortunately I didn't find information about the meaning of the carvings (apart from the shield with emblem of the building original owners). As usual, people are blaming Masons and I wouldn't be surprised if it is a part of masonic symbolism, however, I didn't find anything exactly like that. I.e., IOOF symbol is similar, but it should be chain which would look different. It is also not Borromean Rings which should be interlocked.

So, where does this symbol come from?

A couple more images from other sites:


After hard research, I finally found some interesting resources on this page.

This rings were religius symbols, they represented The Holy Trinity. They represent The Father, The son and The Holy spirit. A circle is an endless line having no beggining and no end symbolising God's eternity. The rings - three ribbon swirls were similar symbol(trinity).

The same building, again three circles. In the center of the image is Dyonisus, god of grape harvest and winemaking. We are talking about trinity again.

And finally yes, you were right about masons. They talked about trinity of everything. Also on this picture you can see lions. They seemed to symbolize the secret meetings - nobody will go beyond the building and it is not available to those from outside of the building.


Before Russia was an empire, it was a collection of duchies, each kinged by a duke. When all these dukes adopted Christianity, which happened at around the same time, they used a crest of three circles in a triangle as a sign of their fidelity to the conversion. Supposedly this was to answer to the trinity, but in truth it probably dates back to being a Mongol symbol from the time when Russia was ruled by the Golden Horde. The dukes just re-adapted the symbol to mean the holy Trinity. In the circles were placed their names, oaths and personal badges. Strahlemberg "Description de l'Empire Russe" vol I p. 240 (1757)


Watch the video: The Quickest History of 20th Century Art in Russia (January 2022).