Poshtova (Post Office) Square one of the Ukrainian capital’s oldest squares was created at the entrance to Kyiv’s Podil district. It was modernized in the 19th century with the opening of the post office from which it gained its name. In the 1970s it was expanded and reconstructed when a metro station opened nearby. Then in 2015 it was further modernized, and a sunken fountain was created at the center of the square which is the focus not only for the metro but also the reconstructed Church of the Nativity, the lower station of Kyiv’s funicular, and the nearby river station.

In 2017 the statues of four children were positioned in and around the fountain to represent the founders of Kyiv – Kyi, Shchek, Khoryv and on a bench nearby their sister Lybid. It is starting to become a tradition for Kyivans to dress up the statues on special days.

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In December the three founders were dressed as angels while their sister's figure was dressed as an energy worker – someone who, like the angels, was bringing much needed light and warmth into the lives of Ukrainians in these difficult times.

The Poshtova square children dressed as “bringers of light”, December 2023. Photo: Facebook

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Previously, the children’s statues have been dressed in military uniform, national costume, even as medical staff during the COVID pandemic. Today they are dressed in clothing representing the USA on its July 4 Independence Day – which is more than just a gesture, it is Kyiv’s way of marking the support given to Ukraine by Washington, another example of bringing light into the darkness that besets the country in time of war.

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The statue of Lybid, the sister of the founders of Kyiv dressed as the Statue of Liberty on US Independence Day 2024, a symbol everyone in Ukraine understands. Photo: Telegram

During excavations of the Poshtova Square, while refurbishment was underway, archaeologists discovered an entire street dating back to times of Kyivan Rus and numerous artifacts from the 11th and 13th centuries. It is planned to eventually build an underground museum complex taking in the discoveries, a reminder of Kyiv’s long history.

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