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Saint Alexander Cathedral, AlexandriaCod 1519

In 1836, two years since Alexandru Dimitrie Ghica (1834-1842), king of Wallachia founded the town, the inhabitants raised a wooden church celebrating Saint Alexander, which shortly became too tight. This is why, after a solid effort, the town episcopacy managed to build, between 1869 and 1898 the current Cathedral, sanctified by Metropolitan Iosif Gheorghian on December 6th 1898.

The Cathedral impresseses with its architectural graveness, but also its imposing size: 42 m long, 26 m wide, her maximum height in the large tower being of 45 m. The Cathedral is in the shape of a cross inside and ship on the outside, with a beautiful porch guarded by Corinthian style columns.

Over the narthex there are two towers, where the bells and clocks are. The decorative elements specific to the Saint Alexander Cathedral are: the wall painting and the altar screen (in neogothic style, 10 m high), executed by the team of painters Constantin Artachino, Constantin Pascali and the famous Ștefan Luchian, in 1898, in bizantine style, in oil technique. That same year the mosaic marble pavement was laid. To the altar screen they later added the St. Spiridon and St. Filofteia icons. The large chandelier, the small chandelier and the emperor candlesticks were made in golden bronze by the Weidekamp Kettling A.C house in Viena, through its representative Hans-Herzog in Bucharest. The holy church went through important repairs after the 1940 and 1977 earthquakes.

In 1994, on the 160 year anniversary since the town’s founding, Saint Alexander Cathedral became the royal necropolis, by bringing in and placing in the narthex of the bones and sarcophagus of king Alexandru Dimitri Ghica. The bones were brought from the “Ghica-Tei” church in Bucharest and the sarcophagus from the National Military Museum in Bucharest. In 1996, with the founding of the Alexandriei and Teleormanului Episcopacy, with residence in Alexandria, the Saint Alexander Church became an Episcopal Cathedral. The holy bishop priest Galaction Stânga, the first bishop of Alexandria and Teleorman, is an arch bishop here since Septemeber 1st 1996.

The Cathedral has a few rare old books, among which: „Evanghelie” (Sibiu, 1806, with manuscipt notes), „Evanghelie” (Sibiu, 1810), „Octoih” (Sibiu, 1811), „Apostol” (1814), „Tipicon” (1816), „Antologhion” (1827 și 1831, published by Macarie the hieromonk), „Cazanie” (Buzău, 1831), „Mineele anului” (Neamț, 1831), „Molitfelnic” (Buzău, 1832), „Liturghier” (Bucharest, 1833), „Penticostarion” (Iași, 1834), „Ceaslov” (Iași, 1835), „Evanghelie” (Buzău, 1837), „Agheasmatar” (Buzău, 1845), „Priveghiu”(Bucharest, 1848), „Ceaslov” (Bucharest 1854), „Octoih” (Bucharest, 1856), „Psaltire” (Bucharest, 1856), „Liturghier” (Bucharest, 1862), „Evanghelie” (1864, wrapped in silver and velvet). Also, it had a manuscipt representing the  „Cântările Sfintei Liturghii”, of the morning and evening masses, written in 1863 by Alexandru Hristescu from Bucharest, disciple of Neofit Scriban. The manuscript is written in red ink and has 344 pages, containing also a few poems that were circulating in that time, among them one dedicated to king Alexandru Ioan Cuza.

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