Colloquium Venue

Novgorod the Great, Russia

Novgorod the Great (Veliky Novgorod) is one of the oldest Russian cities, the cradle of Russian democracy, medieval center of trade and crafts. The first reference to Novgorodas a fortified settlement was found in the chronicle of 859. The scientists still debate about the exact date of the city establishment and location of the old town. The opinion prevails that it was situated at so-called Gorodishche, at the right bank of River Volkhov, 2 km to the contemporary city. It is believed that a Varangian prince Ryurik, who was summoned to the rule in the IXth century and founded the Ryurik dynasty, put his armed force's camp just in this place. In the Xth century, this settlement was relocated to the current location (which, according to a version, explains Novgorod's name as «New town»).

In the Middle Ages, Novgorod governed the lands from the Volga river to the shores of the Arctic Ocean. Since the end of the Xth century, Novgorod became next to the most important center of Kievskaya Rus. The city was the earliest international trading centre of Eastern Europe. Its location at the joint of the routes connecting the Baltic rim countries to the Mediterranea («From the Varangian to the Greek») and to the East via Povolzhye (Volga surroundings), provided for the intensive development of the trade, crafts, and culture. Iron processing, woodworking, tanning, as jewelry craft reached rather high level.


In the era of Kievskaya Rus, the eldest son of the Kiev's Grand Prince by tradition «sat» in Novgorod to gain the experience and learn the wisdom of a ruler. Prince Vladimir, who would later unite all Russian lands as the grand prince of Kiev and baptize Russia in 988, emerged on the political scene in Novgorod. The "illegitimate" son of Prince Sviatoslav and a slave, Vladimir was the elected posadnik or governor of Novgorod. The life of his son, another outstanding statesman of the Russian Middle Ages, Yaroslav-the-Wise, was also closely connected with Novgorod. He was put on the Grand Prince's throne twice, in 1015 and 1019. In 1019 Yaroslav-the-Wise granted Novgorod its independence on Kiev and the rights of a free city.

Novgorod is the birthplace of the Russian democratic, republican traditions. In 1136-1478, Novgorod was the capital of Novgorodskaya feudal republic, ruled by Veche – a people’s assembly, which made decisions on war and peace, summoned and banned the princes, accepted the laws, concluded the agreements with other territories, and elected «Vladyka» – the archbishop of Novgorod. The city was «free-handed in princes»: a prince was summoned to rule for a certain term, usually, for a war period, and on the conditions listed in a special contract.

Novgorod is also known as the earliest centre of education in Russia. In 1034, Yaroslav-the-Wise founded a school for 300 pupils there. The school created favourable conditions for the achievement of universal literacy of the local population. This is confirmed by numerous letters on birch bark sent to the city from surrounding villages. The plots of land owned by the residents of Novgorod were sometimes far from the city and a control over them was exercised by means of correspondence. As for the contents of the birch-bark letters, these were daily messages, papers and instructions on economic matters, political and military reports. These early records have brought to us the living language of mediaeval Novgorod. Another important date is January 31, 1706. On this day Peter the Great signed a Decree on the setting up of the Greek-and-Slavonic School in the city for students of all ages and trades. Two Greek doctors Ioaniky and Sophrony Likhud from the Padua University were invited to Novgorod for teaching.


Veliky Novgorod is famous all over the world for its notable repository of architectural monuments, murals and collections of Russian icon painting and applied art. Nowadays, the visitors to Veliky Novgorod can enjoy a tour of the unique complex of structures dating from the XIth to the XVIIth centuries. The main landmark is the Kremlin (Detinets) which was first mentioned in the Chronicles of 1044. Originally, it consisted only of the Bishop's Court. In the early XIIth century, the territory of the citadel was extended, but the Kremlin began to be used as a military fortification only at the beginning of the XIVth century when it attained contemporary dimensions and stone walls were erected instead of wooden ones. In the late XIVth century, ramparts were built around the entire city with wooden walls and stone towers over them. The walls and towers have acquired present-day appearance at the end of the XVth century.

The St Sophia Cathedral in the Novgorod Kremlin is the most ancient church of Russia. In 989, soon after the baptism of Russia, a wooden church, "perfectly built and decorated, with thirteen domes", and consecrated, like the main Orthodox Church in Constantinople, to God Father and His Creative Wisdom Sophia. The unusual church produced an indelible impression upon Yaroslav-the-Wise. On becoming the grand prince, he erected the Cathedral of St Sophia in Kiev crowning it with thirteen domes too. In 1045, Yaroslav's son Vladimir redesigned the St Sophia Cathedral in Novgorod. This five-domed version of the Novgorod cathedral has survived to the present day and has largely shaped the traditional Russian five-dome church design. The famous cathedral has retained its early iconostasis with icons of the XIVth to XVIIth centuries, frescoes of the XIth and XIIth centuries as well as objects of Byzantine and Western European art.


Yaroslav-the-Wise Novgorod State University

Yaroslav-the-Wise Novgorod State University (NovSU), established in 1993, is the largest higher education institution in the Novgorod region. The university is divided into several institutes. Our event will be hosted by Institute of Electronics and Information Systems (IEIS), namely by Division of Informatics, which provides education in the fields of information technologies, including software engineering, and applied mathematics.
In 2009, Prof. Victor Ivannikov initiated establishment of System Programming Laboratory at NovSU. The laboratory was organized together with Institute of System Programming of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ISP RAS). It participates in development of the binary code analysis platform based on QEMU Emulator. Researchers have created introspection mechanism, which gets information about programs and modules location in memory from virtual machines with Windows or Linux inside.