The Sorcerer of Kolomenskoe
Moscow Legends: The Menshikov Tower

Moscow Legends: The House of Beria

По адресу Малая Никитская, дом 28/1 находится один из самых известных домов в Москве (on Malaya Nikitskaya, 28/1 is one of the most famous buildings in Moscow). This building belongs now to the Embassy of Tunisia. But earlier, in this house lived Лаврентий Берия (Lavrenti Beria, 1899-1953), chief of the secret police (NKVD) under Stalin.

The mansion was built at the beginning of the 20th century for a rich textile manufacturer. Lavrenti Beria lived in this house from the late 1930s until 1953.

It is said that если вы придёте ночью на перекрёсток в районе Патриарших прудов и вам повезёт, то, постояв несколько минут в тишине (if you come at night to the crossroads on Vspolny lane near Patriarch’s Ponds and if you’re lucky, within few minutes in the silent street) – sounds of cars can only be heard from the Sadovaya Kudrinskaya street – you will soon hear the sound of an approaching car.

However if you look around you, you won’t see any car. Звук двигателя автомобиля постепенно становится всё ближе (the sound of the engine is gradually getting closer), but you still can’t see anything. You can feel it so close from you, that you’ll probably make a step or two on the side to keep away from the street.

The car stops suddenly in front of a mansion. Someone opens the doors and you can hear people getting out of the car and unintelligible words being said. Then the doors are closed again and the sound of the car is gradually fading away…

Some people will swear they heard it all, some will just laugh about that story. As for me, I’m not trying to convince you of anything, but if you happen to be in Moscow, and if you have some spare time, the mansion is worth a visit.

Елена Коновалова