The Nativity Monastery was founded in 1191 by Prince Vsevolod III. In the mid-13th century, it became a residence of the Metropolitan of the Russian Orthodox Church retaining this status until 1323.
The Trinity, Resurrection, and St. Lawrence's chronicles were created in this monastery. Simon, the bishop of the cathedral, was the author of the "Kievo-Pechersky paterikon" (hagiography). The monastery boasts a unique library of manuscripts and printed incunabula.
In 1263 Alexander Nevsky, the military leader was interred in the monastery's cathedral. In 1723 by the commission of Peter the First its remains were transferred to the Lavra of Alexander Nevsky in Petersburg.
In the 19th century, the ramshackle cathedral was dismantled. From the monastery ensemble only homestead secular constructions, the church of the Nativity of Christ (17th century), a stone fence, and the Holy Gate have survived.
On the site of the Nativity Cathedral, a monument to Alexander Nevsky (by the sculpture S.Orlov and the architect R.Kuznetsov) now stands. The decision to erect the monument in Vladimir was made in 1963 on the occasion of the 700th anniversary of the commander's death.