Sightseeing in Prague

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Autor: Dievča verca123 (26)
Typ práce: Maturita
Dátum: 28.03.2012
Jazyk: Angličtina
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SIGHTSEEING IN PRAGUE
Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, is the biggest and the oldest city in the Czech Republic. It is the seat of the president, government and parliament. It is also the political, cultural and economic centre of the country. It lies on both banks of the river Vltava, in the middle of Bohemia and in the Central Europe. Prague covers an area of almost 500 km2 and has 1,2 million inhabitants.

It is divided in into 10 districts: the historical parts are Hradcany, Josefov, the Lesser Town, the Old Town, the New Town and Vysehrad. Prague is said to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world.

HISTORY
A legend connected with the founding of Prague and Princess Libuse who prophesied Prague a great glory, which will touch the stars. The oldest settlement of this region dates in the 6th century, when came there the first Slavs. In the 9th and 10th centuries was built Vysehrad and another castle, which became a seat of the Premyslid dynasty. Prague became the imperial residence of Charles IV in 14th century. During his famous reign were founded an Archbishopric, Charles University, the New Town, Charles Square, Saint Vitas Cathedral and Charles Bridge. In the 15th century Prague was the centre of Hussite movement. In 1420 Jan Zizka defeated the first anti-Hussite crusaders on Vitkov hill. At the end of the 16th century Prague flourished during Rudolf II. In 1620 was the Battle of the White Mountain; in 1621 were executed 27 Czech rebels in the Old Town Square and then followed the Thirty Years´War. At the 18th century Prague became center of Czech cultural life when Czech writers began process of the National revival. In 1918 Prague was capital of the independent Czechoslovakia. Prague was occupied by German Troops in 1939 and in 1942 strongly persecuted after assassination of protector Heidrich. In May 1945 the Prague uprising against fascist culminated and then Prague was liberated by Russians. In 1968 stopped the democratic reforms and began the process of normalization. After the Velvet Revolution in 1989 was divided former Czechoslovakia into two parts and on 1st January 1993 Prague became the capital of the Czech Republic.
 
TRANSPORT
There are important road, rail, air ( Ruzyně Airport ) and river transport. Prague has too local transport which includes trams, buses and underground called the metro. On the outskirts of Prague is a very important speed roads, which make the travel easy because in the centre of Prague are still blocks of car.

INDUSTRIES
There are many industries in Prague. The most important is the engineering
( Tesla ), food industry ( Staropramen, Orion ), textile, chemical, printing and
film industries and tourism.
 
SIGHTSEEING
 
PRAGUE CASTLE
  It is most famous monument in Prague. It was founded by Prince Borivoj in 9th century. Now it is the seat of the President. The complex of the castle includes Vladislav Hall, Spanish Hall and Rudolph Gallery, which serve for ceremonial purposes. In castle gardens we can find the Royal Summer Palace Belvedere with the Singing Fountain. In the Castle area are many Palaces, for example the Schwarzenberg Palace, the Archbishop’s Palace, the Sternberg Palace and the Cernin Palace is the seat of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

NATIONAL THEATRE
The National Theatre was building in new renaissance style. It lies in the riverside of the Vltava. There are complex form three artistic files – opera, drama, ballet. First was The Provisory Theatre, it built Frantisek Ladislav Rieger in 1862. In 1866 the national constitution chose project from Josef Zítek and in 1868 laid the foundation of The National Theatre. In 1881 was opened almost ready theatre. There was playing Libuse from Bedrich Smetana, but in 1881 it burned. In 1883 was the theatre opened again.
 
CHARLES BRIDGE
  It is the oldest bridge over the river Vltava in Prague. Carles Bridge was build by Petr Parléř. It is 520 metres long and 10 metres wide. There are two towers at both ends of the bridge - the Lesser Town Bridge Tower and the Old Town Bridge Tower. There is 30 sculptures by M.B.Braun, father and sons Brokoffs atc. This bridge was built in 14th century. There are 18 bridges over the river Vltava.

SAINT VITUS CATHEDRAL
In the centre stands the St. Vitus Cathedral, this was founded by Charles IV in connection with the establishment of the Prague Archbishopric. Inside are the coronation jewels and the Royal Crypt with sarcophaguses of Czech kings and queens. This Gothic building was found in the 21st of November 1344 by Czech King Jan Lucembursky. Plans were made by Matyas from Arras. In 1859 Unity for completion of construction started its working. In 1929 building was finished.

NATIONAL MUSEUM
The National Museum is the biggest and the oldest museum in the Czech Republic. It is found on the upper end of Wenceslas Square in Prague. The museum was founded by count Kaspar Maria Sternberg in 1818 and it was founded as the ,,Patriotic Museum". It is Neo - Renaissance building and its architect was Josef Schulz. The museum contains historical and natural history collections. There are five special institutions in The National Museum: Natural science museum, Historical museum, The Library of National Museum, Museum of Naprstek and Museum of Czech music.
 
PETRIN OBSERVATION TOWER
  Nearby Petrin Hill, which is situated by the Castle, is the Petrin Observation Tower, its free copy of the Eiffel Tower. It is the lookout with labyrinth and funicular and it is most high hill in the centre of Prague. It affords a magnificent view of the Prague. Petrin Hill became accessible from 1882.
 
POWDER TOWER
It was built in Gothic style in 1475 at the edge of Old Town. It’s one of 13 original Prague’s gates. The master builder is Matouš Rejsek. The 65 m tall Powder Tower was built as way to the Royal Route which leads through the Old Town over the Charles Bridge to the castle up the hill. The Powder Tower was at first known as the Mountain Tower. In 1990 was beautifully renovated.
 
SAINT NICOLAS CHURCH
The Saint Nicolas church was founded in 10th century. It is work of the best architects of Prague baroque Kryštof a Killián Dietzenhofer. The tower built A. Lurago. Overhead fresco in the main part ha 1500 km2 – it is one of the biggest in Europe. Pictures there made K. Škréta.
 
CONVENT OF SAINT GEORGE, SAINT GEORGE’S BASILICA
The Convent of Saint George was founded by Boleslav II. for the Benedictine order in 973 as first count in Bohemia’s country. From original romance object stay only the Chapel of Saint Ann. In 1969 it became a holding of National Gallery, what situated there collections of Czech Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.

The Saint George’s Basilica
is one of our most significant romance monument and second oldest Prague church, what was founded in 10th century by prince Vratislav I. The Chapel of Saint Ludmila and the Chapel of Saint John Nepomucky were shunted.
 
CELETNÁ STREET
It is originally lined with Romanesque and Gothic houses which were in addition decorated with baroque facades. Many of houses are indicated with signs. Author of facades is K.I. Dientzenhofer. Next is for example Gočár who is author of house At Black God’s Mother. This one was built in 1911 and 1912. Hrzansky Palace No.12 was decorated by F.M. Brokoff. In Gothic house At Three Queens lived between 1896 and 1907 writer Franz Kafka with his parents. 
 
WENCESLAS SQUARE
The centre of Prague is Wenceslas Square; it is the heart of New Town. It is 750 meters long and lined with banks, department stores, boutiques, shops, hotels, restaurants, cafés, theatres and cinemas. At the top of the square is a bronze statue of Saint Wenceslas made by J.V. Myslbek. This is a favorite place for tourists and that’s why it is so expensive. There are many street-stalls with souvenirs from Prague, postcards and guides.

OLD TOWN SQUARE
It is the old town square in Prague. In summer tables spill out from the restaurants, and in December the square hosts the cities largest Christmas Market. All of the palaces, churches and houses around the square are of major historical interest. In the middle of this square is the John Huss Monument, its completed in 1915. John Huss preached in the Bethlehem Chapel, it is nearly the Square. The Old Town Square was a part of the Royal Route which led along Celetná and Karlova Street to the Castle. The famous buildings here are the house At the Stone Bell, Kinský Palace with a graphic collection and the Týn Church, where was Tycho Brahe buried.
 
NERUDA STREET
  Take Neruda Street leading upwards to Prague Castle. It’s named after the poet and journalist Jan Neruda, who lived at No.47 in the House at the Two Suns. It is the picturesque street. There are also Baroque buildings, such as the Thun-Hohenstain Palace and the Morzin. The former palace is with sculptures by Ferdinand Maxmilian Brokoff decorated. The house U Dvou Slunců was recalling by Czech author Jan Neruda.
 
GOLDEN LANE
The oldest written data of it are from 16th century, when it was called „Gold-smith“. Her inhabitants were maybe castle shooters, craftsmen and later poor people too. In the little house No.22 lived Franz Kafka and in a little house No.6 lived Jaroslav Seifert. Today there are in most of the little houses shops with artist things and souvenirs.

VYŠEHRAD CASTLE
  By the bank of the river Vltava stands the Vyšehrad Castle. It was built in the 11th century and there is the Rotunda of St. Martin, the oldest Romanesque building in Prague. In 1719 was reconstructed for services. We can find here the cemetery – it is called Slavín. There were buried famous people – A. Dvořák, B. Smetana, K. Čapek, J. Neruda.

KAROLINUM
  Karolinum is the oldest building of Charles University. It was founded by Charles IV. in 1348 and it was first College of Charles University. The head of University is rector. It has about 7000 employees, 42000 students and 17 faculties. For example: Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Science, Faculty of Physical Education and Sport and  Faculty of Humanities

JEWISH TOWN
  The Jewish town is called 'Josefov' to this day in honor of Josef II. It is a quarter from 10th century with 6 synagogues – the most famous is called Old-New Synagogue. There is the oldest cemetery in Europe, the Old Jewish Cemetery. It was only for Jews until 1787. The most prominent graves are those of Mordechai Maisel and Rabi Löw.
 
OLD TOWN HALL
  The Town Hall was founded in 1338. Then the tower was joined to the chapel, and in 1470 the Town Hall was refurbished in Gothic style. The Astronomical clock dates from the beginning of the 15th century. On this are Twelve Apostles, which we can see every hour. In the lower part are 12 medallions with the signs of the zodiac, created by Josef Manes.
 
In Prague are many theatres, cinemas and musical performances. Lots of the best galleries and museums can be seen there too. Some of the best known places are the National Gallery, the National Theatre, the Palace of Culture and the Semafor. Many famous personalities have visited Prague: Mozart, Beethoven, Einstein, George Bush and Prince Charles. Prague is also an important centre of sports. There are many stadiums, tennis courts and swimming pools. There is also the world’s biggest stadium - Strahov.
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