Red Square is one of the most famous squares of Moscow and Russia. The length of the square is 330 meters and its width is 70 meters. The square appeared at the end of the 15th century and it was called "Merchant Place" and only in the 17th century it became "Red" square, but not because of the red bricks but from the Russian word "krasnaya" - which means beautiful. There are several structures in the square which form the ensemble of the place.
In the western part of the square there is Lenin's Mausoleum where the embalmed body of V. I. Lenin, the founder of the Soviet Union, is displayed. The first wooden mausoleum was built in 1924 after Lenin's death and was rebuilt in 1929-1930 using stone, marble and granite.
Stalin's body after his death was also put into the mausoleum and stayed there till 1961 when de-Stalinization has started.
During the Soviet era the soldiers stood by the doors of the Mausoleum, and it was known as post #1. In the 90's of the 20th century the post was moved to the Alexandrovsky garden and is now near the eternal flame and the tomb to the unknown soldier. To the right of the mausoleum there is the Kremlin Wall Necropolis. Many Soviet leaders as well as famous foreign communists are buried in the Necropolis.
In the southeast end of Red Square one can observe the Cathedral of St. Basil the Blessed, also known as the Church of Intercession of the Virgin on the Moat. It is a multi-tented church which also features distinctive onion domes. The cathedral is traditionally perceived as a symbol of the unique position of Russia between Europe and Asia. The church was built at the command of Ivan IV, known as Ivan the Terrible, in 1551-1561 to commemorate the capture of the town of Kazan. The interior of the cathedral is a collection of separate chapels, each filled with beautiful icons, medieval painted walls, and varying artwork on the top inside of the domes.
There is a statue to Dmitry Pozharsky and Kuzma Minin near the main entrance to the cathedral. These men were the leaders of the people's volunteer army, which fought against the Polish invaders at the beginning of the 17th century during so called Time of Troubles.
Nearby is the so-called Lobnoye Mesto, a circular platform where public ceremonies used to take place as well as the tsars' decrees were read to the public.