Category: baroque

The Catholic victory in the Thirty Years’ War (1618 to 1648) resulted in the most substantial changes to the fabric of the city since the 14th century. And the chosen medium for the church’s renewed authority across the kingdom was the uncompromising power of baroque sculpture.

 

Karlův Most: Charles Bridge

Charles Bridge: Jan Nepomuk

The baroque statues for which Charles Bridge is rightly famous are not arranged according to any predetermined plan. They were erected individually over many decades, part of the programme of recatholicization after the Thirty Years’ War. The choice...

Saint Lutgardis

Charles Bridge: Saint Lutgardis

Visitors to Prague are always surprised to learn that the avenue of saints keeping watch over Charles Bridge was never planned as a single architectural scheme. In fact the statues were created by no fewer than fifteen sculptors...

Vrtba Gardens

Tucked away behind an unassuming gateway on Karmelitská street in Malá Strana is one of the hidden gems of Prague: the baroque garden constructed for Jan Josef Count of Vrtba, considered to be among the finest of its...

Charles Bridge: Saint Ivo

Saint Ivo Helory was a thirteenth-century parish priest from Brittany who was canonized in 1347. He trained as a lawyer and rapidly made his name as an advocate for orphans, widows and the poor. Two of his cases...

Nerudova 212/16: The Golden Chalice

This renaissance house with its baroque exterior is typical of the residences in this part of the city’s Malá Strana (Lesser Quarter). Many of them carry baroque era cartouches with symbols of animals, birds or religious emblems. These...

Valdštejn Gardens and 'Sala Terrena'

Valdštejn Gardens and ‘Sala Terrena’

These impressive formal gardens form part of the palace complex designed for Count Albrecht of Wallenstein by the architectural triumvirate of Giovanni Pieroni, Andrea Spezza and Nicolo Sebregondi.  Covering four-and-a-half acres — nearly two hectares — the gardens...

Basilica of St James the Greater

Basilica of St James the Greater

The church of St James the Greater (sv. Jakub Větší) was founded in 1232 in Prague’s Old Town, possibly as a shrine to hold a relic of St James acquired by the Přemyslid king Otakar I. By 1244...

Vodičkova 708/35: U Červeného pole

Vodičkova 708/35: U Červeného pole

This two-storey townhouse ‘U Červeného pole’ (‘The Red Field’) is an ancient survivor in a street otherwise dominated by much taller buildings from the 1900s, such as the nearby ‘U Myšáka’. The earliest records show that until 1397...

Maltézské náměstí 471/1: Nostic Palace

Maltézské náměstí 471/1: Nostic Palace

This early baroque palace in the Malá Strana district was built between 1662 and 1675 for Jan Hartvik, count of Nostitz (‘Nostic’ in Czech orthography). For many years attributed to Francesco Caratti, later analysis suggests that the palace...

Karlova Koruna, Chlumec nad Cidlinou

Karlova Koruna, Chlumec nad Cidlinou

The village of Chlumec, fifty miles east of Prague, came into the possession of the noble family of Kinský at the start of the seventeenth century.  In 1721, Count František Ferdinand Kinský invited the baroque architect Jan Blažej...