The Grand Choral Synagogue of St. Petersburg, sometimes called the St. Petersburg Synagogue, is the second largest synagogue in Europe. It was built between 1880 and 1888, and consecrated in 1893. Poet Osip Mandelstam called the Petersburg Synagogue a "lavish, outstandish seductress".
The St. Petersburg Synagogue could be built only after the building permit was obtained on September 1, 1869 from Tsar Alexander II, who lessened the restrictions for Jews' residence in St. Petersburg. This became possible after the memorandum to the Royal Name was submitted by the leader of the Jewish Community, Hereditary Honorary Citizen of Russia Evzel Ginzburg, who was one of the major suppliers of the Russian Imperial Army. His son, Horace Evselevich Ginzburg, was Chairman of St. Petersburg Jewish community in 1869 - 1909, and supervised the construction of the first synagogue in St. Petersburg.