Prague

Cudzie jazyky » Angličtina

Autor: ivanka88
Typ práce: Referát
Dátum: 25.07.2009
Jazyk: Angličtina
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Praktické!
Prague is the capital of the Czech Republic and the biggest city in our republic. It lies in the heart of Europe on the river Vltava. It is very beautiful city with many historical buildings and monuments. It’s sometimes called town with hundred towers because of big amount of towers (550). Prague is also called Gold Prague, Mother of towns or The Heart of Europe. Many people say that Prague is very romantic.
 
History
Prague was founded in the 6th century by Slavs. A legend connects the foundation of Prague with Princess Libuše of the Přemyslid dynasty who told that the future glory of Prague „would touch the stars“. The first Slavs came to Prague valley in the 6th century. In the 10th century was founded Vyšehrad castle. It is the oldest castle in Prague. Vyšehrad became the seat of Czech rulers and Prague became the centre of the economic life during the 11th century.

In the 14 century lived in Prague the most famous emperor of Czech Monarchy Charles IV. Prague became the imperial residence of Charles IV and during his reign it flourished and grew. He established there an Archbishopric in 1344, founded Charles University (1348) and New Town cattle market (Charles square). He also promoted the construction of Charles Bridge and St. Vitus Cathedral. In the 15th century Prague was the centre of the Hussite movement, which was one of the consequences of execution of John Huss.
In 16th century Prague regained its cosmopolitan character when it become the seat of Rudolph II., who invited artiststs and scientists there.

At the end of the 18th century Prague became the centre of Czech cultural life when czech scholars and writers began the process of National Revival
In 1918 Prague was the capital of the newly independent Czechoslovakia. In 1939 it was occupied by German troops and in 1942 strongly persecuted after the assassination of the nazy deputy protector Heydrich. After the Prague Uprising against the fascist the town was liberated by the Russians on 9th May 1945. The August occupation of Prague in 1968 stopped the democratic reforms in the country and began the process of normalization. After 40 years of totalitarian depression on the 17th November 1989, the Velvet Revolution began democratic changes in our society. Huge demonstrations started on Národní Street. The whole process continued with the splitting of former federal Czechoslovakia into two independent states on 1st January 1993, Prague became the capital of the Czech Republic.
 
Prague covers an area of almost 500 square kilometres and it has 1.2 million inhabitants. It is divided into 10 administrative districts. Districts 1 and 2 comprise a historical centre, visited by tourists very much. The other districts are of industrial areas or estates.
 
Sightseenig
The historical centre is very nice. Prague is the largest European city, which haven’t been largely devastated by Second World War. The old centre of Prague consist of five historical districts. They are the Old Town, the Lesser Town, the New Town, Josefov and Hradcany.
 
The most famous area for tourists is the Prague castle. From the squares outside you can admire the City below with hundreds of spires.
The Prague castle is the seat of the President. The complex of buildings includes three courtyards. In the central courtyard stands St. Vitus Cathedral, made in Gothic style. It was founded by Charles IV. It is the work of Matthias of Arras and Petr Parléř. Inside the Cathedral we can admire the Gothic St. Wenceslas Chapel, the coronation chamber (with crown, the sceptre, the orb), and the Royal Crypt. There is also the popular big bell called Zikmund.
You can visit for example the Golden lane. Old legends say that several centuries ago royal alchemist lived and worked in the little houses of this narrow lane. Alchemists tried to make gold but they never succeeded. Some of the houses were changed to shops.

Another place good for visiting in the Prague castle is the Vladislav Hall. In the middle ages is was the largest hall in Prague. Here many ceremonies such as the coronation of the king took place. At the Castle you can also visit the Convent of St.George, and in the castle gardens admire the Royal Summer Palace Belvedere (Italian Rennaissance) and Singing Fountain. This Fountain is the oldest in Prague. But the Prague Castle is not the oldest one. The oldest one is Vyšehrad Castle with Slavín cemetery where Czech artists, writers and rich Prague citizens are buried.
 
When you go along the Nerudova street, where lived Jan Neruda, the Czech famous writer, you came to Lesser Town Square, where is St.Nicholas Church. The Bridge Street leads to Charles Bridge, the second oldest one in Czech Republic (Písek has the first oldest bridge). On the both ends of this bridge there are bridge-towers, each one is different. This bridge was built by Charles IV, when the Judita's bridge was torn down by the flood. This bridge is decorated with 30 statues in Baroque style made by Jan Brokof and Matyáš Brown. It is said that the statue of John Nepomuk make your dreams come true. There is a lot of artists and musicians, stalls with pictures of Prague and stalls with jewellery.
 
The famous area of Kampa is situated along the Vltava river. Many people go there for a walk. We know many legends about non-human creatures from Kampa. From Kampa we can go to the Petřín hill, with a large park. Many people living in the centre go there for a walk, jogging, or with dogs or children. On the top there is a look out - tower - Petřín Observation Tower similar to the Eiffel tower in Paris, but it is five times smaller. It affords a magnificent view of the Prague. There is small Mirror Labyrinth. People can do sports there or in the nearby Strahov stadium, or on the Letná field. Letná field is also the place where demonstrations are hold.
 
You can recognise the National theatre standing on the Vltava embankment. In the last century the Czech people wanted to have their own theatre where Czech operas, dramas and plays could be performed. People collected money for it. Unfortunately it burned down not long after its opening. So people built it again.
 
Along Charles Street we can get to the Old Town Square, the oldest square in Prague, where we can find the house At the Stone Bell. There is also monument of John Huss in the centre of the Square. The dominant of the Square is the Týn church, where Tycho de Brahe is buried.Old Town Square is the place where 27 Czech noblemen were executed. The most interesting for tourist is Old Town Hall with astronomical clock, which strikes every 60 minutes is controlled by a very complicated mechanism built in the Middle Ages. Twelve apostles going around beyond two little windows every hour.
 
You can go down to the Jewish Town. The best known synagogue are the Old-New Synagogue (It was the centre of the Prague Ghetto), it is the oldest and it is used for Jewish worship services, and Pinkas Synagogue. On the walls in this Synagogue there are names of victims of Nazi terror. Beside it there is a Jewish cemetery with a grave of Rabbi Löw, where you can give a small paper with your secret wish and it will come true. There is also a Jewish museum.
 
The heart of the New Town is Wenceslas Square, which is the most important square in Prague, but it isn’t the biggest – it’s Charles Sqaure. At the top of the square there is a bronze equestrian statue of St. Wenceslas made by Czech sculptor J.V.Myslbek. The statue is popular meeting point. This is a one of favourite place for tourists and that’s why it is so expensive. There is a lot of small cafeterias, fastfoods and restaurants. Many people sell their product on the streets. We can find small shops in Jalta arcade, Blaník arcade and Lucerna arcade with a big ball hall. There is the Neo-Rennaissance building of the National Museum on the top of the square. It’s Czech biggest and oldest museum. There are zoological, archaeological and historical expositions. From the Wenceslas square we can go to the Republic square along the Na příkopě street which is known for the Mark and Spencer shopping centre. There are the Municipal House and The Powder Gate close to the Republic square.
 
You can also find a Zoo in Prague in Troja or an exhibition place with theatres and Křižík fountain, which spirts the water in the tune of the musik in the lights of different colours.
 
Other interested place:
Loreta – barogue place of pilgrimage. The carillon is one of the oldest working carillons in Europe.
Žižkov Tower – Tv tower.
The Carolinum – the oldest building of Charles University
Congress Centrum
Žofín, Hungry Wall
 
In Prague you can travel by underground, it is quick and relatively cheap or by bus or tram. I thing that the public transport is very good, you can get everywhere, you don’t have to wait for so long, it takes you a lot to get from one to another part of the city sometimes. A lot of busses, trams, underground have three lanes. No trolley. On summer you can also hire a boat and have a trip on the river or you can hire a horse-cart or some of the sightseeing trams. The most expensive way of transport is going by taxi. It is quite big risk because the taxi drives cheat and charge more than they are allowed to. Taxis are not also very quick because streets are full of cars and buses. In Pragueis one Airport - Ruzyně. It was rebuilt few years ago, it’s quite big but not as big as Frankfurt for example, it’s very modern.

The cheapest accommodation in Prague are youth hostels. However, these hostels are very uncomfortable, you sleep with several people in one room and have no privacy and the staff is quite unpleasant. Hotels are more comfortable but also more expensive. The most famous hotels and the most expensive are Hilton, Four Season, Intercontinental and Savoy, where are often accommodated popular music or movie stars. In summer you can also live in a camp in tent. It is more comfortable and cheaper than a youth hostel but you must be careful about thieves.
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