You lucky devils! Living in Kiev, where you have all sorts of antiquities, shrines, monasteries, theaters and cabarets … a beautiful city of Kiev, the happy city. Spilled over the Dnipr river, all covered in greens of the chestnut trees, glittering with sunspots. Oh, Kiev-city! The Beauty! The herbs! The fragrance of hay! The slopes! The valleys!
1916, Mikhail Bulgakov
“Kiev is Jerusalem of the Russian Lands” 1833
“Kiev, famous for its greatness and its misfortunes, is the beauty in the history of our fatherland, is the brightest diamond in the crown of our sovereigns!”1856