The Mystery of Undecayed Bodies in the Ancient Moscow Necropolis

In 1972-1974, while digging a foundation pit near the Mausoleum, the necropolis of the Moiseyev nunnery was discovered, where nuns and laymen – parishioners of the Church of St. Moisey of God were buried until the XVIII century. In one section of the cemetery, archaeologists found coffins with nearly undecomposed bodies.

Archaeologists found more than 600 burials. Not only shrouds and shims, crosses, beads, rosaries, icons, tears and other objects were perfectly preserved in the moist soil, but in one section of the cemetery coffins with nearly undecayed bodies, covered with shaggy mold, were found and had to be dug out.

The bodies were in wooden driftwood coffins, which were arranged in four tiers. Glass, metal vessels, tear-boxes for fragrant myrrh, among other things, were found during the clearing of the graves. They also found unique fabrics embroidered in silk, and they retained their original color.

Rumors swirled in Moscow that incorruptible relics of saints had been found in the Manezh, exuding fir or vampires pierced with aspen stakes. Vampires are not vampires, but the question remains unanswered – why were the bodies of the dead imperishable only in part of the necropolis, given that the moisture and soil structure in this area does not differ from the rest of the territory?

At the end of the excavations the remains were exhumed and reburied in the nearby Moscow suburbs – in consultation with the Moscow Patriarchate, burial took place in a specially constructed crypt at the nearby Moscow suburbs cemetery in Rakitki, according to the ancient rite, with a funeral service performed by the prior of the Kazan Cathedral on Red Square.

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x