The Church of the Virgin was built by the order of Grand Prince Vladimir the Great between 989 and 996 by Byzantine and local workers at the site of death of martyrs Theodor the Varangian and his son Johann. It was originally named the “Church of Our Lady”, in honor of the Dormition of the Theotokos. The church was ruined in 1240 during the siege of Kiev by Mongol armies of Batu Khan.
Vladimir set aside a tithe of his income and property to finance the church’s construction and maintenance, which gave the church its popular name. On an initiative of the Metropolitan of Kiev Eugene Bolkhovitinov, the church was rebuilt in the mid 19th century, but in 1928 it was once again destroyed by the Soviet regime.