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Vyazma

(4.9/5 based on 85 reviews for 3 attractions)
Things to do: sightseeing, museums, historic sites
Vyazma is a town and the administrative center of Vyazemsky District in Smolensk Oblast, Russia, located on the Vyazma River, about halfway between Smolensk, the administrative center of the oblast, and Mozhaysk. Throughout its turbulent history, it defended western approaches to Moscow. Population: 44,000 (1970).Medieval history and monumentsVyazma was first mentioned in a chronicle under the year of 1230, although it is believed to be much older than that. The town was named after the river, whose name was from Russian word "" (vyaz'), meaning "bog" or "swamp". At the time, the town belonged to a lateral branch of the Rurikid House of Smolensk. In 1403, the local princes were expelled by Lithuanians to Moscow, where they took the name of Princes Vyazemsky. The most notable among them were Pyotr Vyazemsky, an intimate friend of the poet Alexander Pushkin and a poet himself, and Sophie Viazemski, a French writer, for a time married to Jean-Luc Godard.
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