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Rasu Cemetery (Rasu kapines), Vilnius

4.7
#12 of 31 in Historic Sites in Vilnius
Cemetery Tourist Spot
Rasos Cemetery is the oldest and most famous cemetery in the city of Vilnius, Lithuania. It is named after the Rasos district where it is located. It is separated into two parts, the old and the new cemeteries, by a narrow Sukilėliai Street. The total area is 10.8 ha. Since 1990 new burials are allowed only to family graves.HistoryThe year 1769 is cited in many sources as the date when the cemetery was founded. However, some historians believe it is a typo and the real date should be 1796. On April 24, 1801 the new cemetery was consecrated. Two days later Jan Müller, the mayor of Vilnius, became the first person to be buried there. A formal document was signed in July 1801. It specified that the cemetery received 3.51 ha of land and that the cemetery will be free of charge to all city residents. It was the first cemetery in Vilnius not located next to a church.In 1802-1807 two columbariums were built. They reached up to five stories in height and were joined at a right angle. At the end of the 19th century the columbariums began deteriorating. In between the columbariums, a neo-gothic red brick chapel was built in 1844–50. In 1888 a matching belltower was added to the chapel. At first the cemetery was surrounded by a wooden fence, but it burned down in 1812. A brick fence was rebuilt in 1820 and portions of it survive to this day.In 1814 the cemetery was expanded as authorities bought additional land from a city resident. The addition is now known as the Hill of the Literaries (Lithuanian: Literatų kalnelis). In 1847, members of the Eastern Orthodox church opened their own cemetery next to Rasos. It was used to bury soldiers from a nearby monastery hospital and poor city residents. Therefore, it became known as the Cemetery of Orphans (Lithuanian: Našlaičių kapinės).
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
83 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • A different visit is recommended, is in a well-kept surroundings and walk through it, even if it is a cemetery full of energy
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  • nice to get away from the bustle of the city and enjoy quiet surroundings- not that the residents were likely to be noisy!  more »
  • It's a must-see place only for Poles dreaming of the long gone days of Polish expansionism. Or if you're generally interested in cemeteries, this one's quite old and nicely located. Didn't seem partic...  more »
Google
  • One of the most beautiful cemeteries I have ever seen in a nice foresty area. Shame about the road in the middle but if you go into the southern part and get further in you are barely aware of what happens outside the cemetery. Must see in vilnius if you like walks with a view.
  • Probably the oldest cementary near the center of Vilnius with great history.
  • Oldest cemetry in city.
  • 👍
  • Squeezes the heart. One of the four Polish cemeteries where history is so close to us. Not 70.100 years ago only just around the corner. Is closer than anywhere else. You need to appear on the place to feel the atmosphere of the place. Not mixed together here present. Is the past. And just a pity that the gravestones are in such terrible condition. Photos of broken intentionally. But no one is able to erase the history and soul of Polish patriotism here. It is worth noting that the next is the heart of Marshal Piłsudski with his mother. He wanted to be with his soldiers and last order was suspended.
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