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    VELIKY NOVGOROD, April 23 (RIA Novosti) - Russian specialists have restored several more 14th-century frescoes from the Assumption Church on Volotovo Field, in the northwestern Russian town of Novgorod. The largest of the restored pieces, "Jacob's Ladder," measures two square meters.

    Built in 1352, the Assumption Church on Volotovo Field is one of Russia's oldest Orthodox cathedrals. Its original mural paintings, covering a total area of 350 square meters, were badly damaged during World War II.

    Restoration works in the church were launched in 2001, as part of a Russo-German collaborative project endorsed by the culture ministers of the two countries. The German gas company Wintershall AG pledged to contribute 1,520,000 dollars for the project over a period of five years. The church reopened in a solemn ceremony on August 28, 2003.

    Its frescoes are being restored to their original appearance from 1.7 million shattered fragments, in a workshop arranged on the former premises of a beer-brewing company (the site's renovation, too, was bankrolled by the German side). They are being pieced together on the basis of 19th-century tracings from St. Petersburg's Russian Museum and using techniques developed by the renowned restorers Alexandra and Valentin Grekovs. Computers are also involved in the process; they offer the most probable arrangements of scanned details.

    The restoration of the Assumption Church's frescoes is to be completed by the year 2010.

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