352 - Palackého Embankment viewed from the Palacký Bridge
After completion of the Palacký Bridge between 1876 and 1878, the construction of the embankment wall from the Bridge to Myslíkova Street was launched. The northernmost part of then area of Podskalí (see picture 360) was located in this section. The Embankment was elevated on this site by some 12 metres and saw the construction of two blocks of new buildings separated by Trojanova (formerly Kočičí) Street. In the block behind this street you can see two buildings, new Nos. 2000 and 1980 (with light front and topped by cupolas), constructed by the entrepreneur V. Havel between 1904 and 1905, with cooperation of J. Čámský and possibly also O. Polívka. The size of individual flats was over 250 square metres and exceeded the already luxury standard of the new neighbouring buildings. Immediately after its completion a still extant wharf for the popular pleasure-steamers was established on the Embankment.
PHOTOTYPE. AROUND 1906
353 - A view through Voršilská Street from Ferdinandova Street towards the south
In the right of the picture you can see the elongated side wall of the Ursuline Convent building, No. 139 (see picture 327). On the left, behind part of the Neo-Classical Wallis Building, No. 138, there is the Neo-Baroque Walter Building, No. 140. It bears the name of its owner of 1889, the renowned industrialist M. Walter, who had the originally mediaeval building radically reconstructed according to the plans of F. Ohmann. Nowadays, it houses the Apostolic nunciature. Beyond it, at the corner of Ostrovní (Island) Street, the early Neo-Classical Schwarzenberg Palace, No. 130, came into being on the site of three mediaeval houses in 1789. The author of the reconstruction was I. Palliardi, the sculptural decoration was carried out by I. F. Platzer. In the background, on the other corner, an arch of the marvellous early Baroque Klebelsberg Palace, No. 144, stands out. It was demolished in 1901 to the detriment of this street.
PHOTOTYPE. L. J. ČECH, AROUND 1900
354 - On the site of the former St Wenceslas Penitentiary in Zderaz
On the levelled-out terrain on the site of the former St Wenceslas Penitentiary in Zderaz a row of remarkable buildings were erected in the years 1890-1910. One of the buildings is located in the very vicinity of the Church of St Wenceslas (on the left, just out of the picture) - the Hlávka Student Dormitory, new No. 1966. The Art Nouveau building designed by J. Fanta was constructed between 1902 and 1904 on a building site donated by the city. Visually it consists of two buildings - a lower one, at the corner of Dittrichova and Jenštejnská Streets, the front of which is decorated with beautiful sgraffiti by K. L. Klusáček, and a higher building with its front and entrance on Jenštejnská Street. The Dormitory is linked with the name of the architect and entrepreneur J. Hlávka, one of the major public benefactors of the period, who had the Dormitory, serving more than 200 poor students with outstanding study results, built from his own funds. On the right you can see a residential block, new No. 1776, originating from the 1880s.
PHOTOTYPE. H. Z. ZUNA, 1906
355 - The spacious U Myslíků Building, No. 171
At the corner of Myslíkova and Spálená Streets (on the right) and Černá Street (on the left, just out of the picture). Originally a mediaeval house, with some Gothic fragments in the cellars, it started to be extended as early as in the 15th century when neighbouring lots and buildings were gradually attached to it. Its name, which was later used for the whole street, arose through the corruption of the name of the once owner of the house, E. Myslich. In 1800 the house received a Neo-Classical facade. When the picture was taken, it housed the New Town Café, a restaurant, a tap-room (as advertised in the sign in the shop window, a regular pint of beer cost 6 kreutzers) and a fashion hall for ladies. In front of the building there was a stop on the electrified tram route Těšnov- Smíchov. Many people still remember the butcher’s and the restaurant which were established in the 1970s by means of a modification of the ground floor premises. In the late 1980s the house was left empty and it started to fall into disrepair, however the reconstruction of 1996 managed to restore the building’s original beauty.
PHOTOTYPE. F. J. JEDLIČKA, 1901
356 - An eclectic building of the Women’s Production Association opposite
The Church of St Wenceslas and at the corner of Resslova and Dittrichova Streets, new No. 1940. It was constructed by the J. Blecha Company between 1895 and 1896. The Association, the founder of which was the writer K. Světlá, was established in 1871 and constituted one of the first successes of the women’s rights movement in Bohemia. It was a girls’ school, where the fundamentals of practical professions were taught. And so in this building the Girls’ Business and Secondary Industrial School for over 600 girl-students was established. The Association cooperated with Minerva, another association for the educational advancement of women, which was closely linked with the writer E. Krásnohorská. When the picture was taken, Minerva was running a private Secondary Girls’ School, set up in 1890, from which the first 45 girl-students graduated after five years of study.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. F. J. JEDLIČKA, 1901
357 - The Czech-Slavonic Business Academy on the corner of Václavská and Resslova Streets
This Academy of three-year study was established in 1872 - some decades later than in other developed European countries. It was supposed to prepare students from Slavonic countries who had graduated from lower secondary schools and secondary grammar schools (Gymnasium) for business and industrial professions. In 1898 over 500 students attended this institution. The tuition fees then amounted to 120 guldens for those other than the 24 scholarship students. The Neo-Renaissance building of the Academy was constructed in 1892 according to designs by J. Drdínko. In 1915 it was reconstructed - after the removal of the original, richly decorated tympanum it received one more storey and a new facade. The Church of St Wenceslas, behind the building of the Academy, is located on part of the original plateau of Břežská Skála, a rock formation which was tunnelled through at the time of prolongation of the originally short Resslova Street towards the embankment.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. H. Z. ZUNA, AROUND 1905
358 - The Church of St Charles Boromeus at the corner of Resslova and Na Zderaze Streets, No. 307
The Church was connected to the original house for retired priests. It was constructed between 1730 and 1740 in an imposing Baroque style, according to the original project of P. I. Bayer, and completed with some modifications of the front by K. I. Dientzenhofer. Later, after this house was abolished in 1783 as part of the Josefinian reforms, the entire complex, including the Church, served as a military storage house and later, from 1877, as a theatre storage space. During the above-mentioned lowering of the level of the terrain in the mid-1880s (in this place by about 3 metres), even the demolition of the Church was contemplated. Fortunately this did not take place, the original masonry of the saved Church was reinforced and later, following some modification and restoration works, in the 1930s it was given to the orthodox Church. In June 1942 the crypt of the Church sheltered, after assassination of the Imperial Protector of Bohemia, Reinhard Heydrich, the Czechoslovak parachutists who had been sent by the Czech Government in exile in London. Following a short battle, besieged by SS units, the parachutists ended their lives with their last bullets. In the background, you can see the building of the Czech Technical University in Charles Square.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. K. BELLMANN, 1899
394 - A part of Vyšehradská Street
From the intersection with Charles Square to the building of the municipal almshouse, No. 427 (see picture 397). The street descends from the Square to the space in front of the side of the almshouse where we come across the intersection of four streets of which two can be seen in the picture: Na Slupi, with the tower of the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows (see picture 398), which is a street connecting the New Town with Nusle, and its continuation, Vyšehradská, which in the background turns to the right and leads to Vyšehrad. These two streets copy the time-honoured route between Prague Castle and Vyšehrad. The construction of residential buildings after 1880, and the introduction of tram transportation, turned these once quiet thoroughfares with practically no traffic into relatively busy streets.
PHOTOTYPE. F. J. JEDLIČKA, 1903
395 - A part of Vyšehradská Street from the opposite angle to that in picture 394
A part of Vyšehradská Street from the Municipal Almshouse to Charles Square, from the opposite angle to that in picture 394. In the background on the left we can see a part of the Church in Emauzy which was a part of the Monastery of Slavonic Benedictines. The three buildings on the left were constructed on a plot zoned off from the monastery garden. In the background we can see the protruding towers of the Church of St John Nepomuk in Skalka, built with architectural mastery on the sloping terrain by K. I. Dientzenhofer in the years 1730-1749 on the site of an old chapel dating from 1691. The structure standing in front of the church, No. 431, was built a short time before the taking of the picture, in 1903. In picture 394 (at the furthest left), on the site of No. 431, we can still see a wall of the church garden. The five-storey buildings between Hrádecká and Benátská Streets (at the furthest left) are typical of the turn-of-the-century type of residential construction reflecting higher standards of housing. Around the year 1900 it became possible, in public spaces and on corners, to see street clocks which introduced the still sedate Prague to a more hectic time-watching era.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. AROUND 1906
396 - The Botanical Garden on the corner of Benátská and Na Slupi Streets (on the right)
The predecessor of this Botanical Garden was located in Smíchov. After its destruction by the great flood of 1890, the state purchased the plot of the Social Garden in Na Slupi Street for 1.5 million guldens, and in the years 1897-1898 established new botanical gardens here. The plot was divided between the Czech University (the lower part in the picture) and the German University (the upper part, beyond the building in the middle). The collections of plants from the Smíchov Botanical Garden were divided equally between the two universities. On the left in the background we can see a two-storey structure in Benátská Street (see picture 401). The buildings in the foreground are the old exhibition pavilion inherited from the former Social Garden. An addition to the complex of the Botanical Garden was the two-storey structure in the middle. At the top right we can see the old Canon’s house, No. 447, and the tower of the Church of St Apollinaris. In front of them is the extensive complex of paint-shops and workshops of the National Theatre of 1900.
PHOTOTYPE. A. L. KOPPE, 1907
397 - A view of the middle part of Vyšehradská Street
From the intersection of the streets Plavecká (on the left) and Botičská (on the right), looking towards Benátská Street. The whole eastern side of the street is covered by the three long structures of the Municipal Almshouse, Nos. 424 and 427, built on the site of the original almshouse, the Dt Bartholomew Church and a hospital founded by the New Town burghers around 1505. The originally Gothic complex was remodelled in Baroque style in the years 1686 and 1773, and demolished in 1884. The old almshouse was a low, one-storey building which e.g. in 1784 became a refuge for 48 impoverished burghers. The inmates of the almshouse even had their own uniforms: red coats with white facings. The new almshouse was built in a Neo-Renaissance style in the years 1884-1886 to a design by J. Srdínek and with a capacity to house 400 burghers of both sexes who were in need. The building today houses the Ministry of Justice.
PHOTOTYPE. L. J. ČECH, 1899
398 - Na Slupi Street
Between the Botanical Garden and the Church of the Annunciation of our Lady (for a view from the opposite side - see 399). On the left are three buildings, Nos. 1483-1485, constructed prior to 1880 on the lots adjacent to the former Social Garden, later the Botanical Garden. These residential buildings differ from the run-of-the-mill residential blocks in their more ornate fronts and higher quality flats, with windows facing the street for residents of a higher social class whilst the inner sides of the buildings, with their characteristic enormous porches, remained the domicile of the poorer tenants. One of the more prestigious tenants in the first building was Dr. Č. Zíbrt, the author of many ethnographic and other publications of European fame (the history of dancing in Bohemia). Behind the protruding time-honoured structure (and beyond Apolinářská Street behind this building) is the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows with a convent and a hospital for women operated by the Elizabethan Order. All the structures on the left, except for the first two, as far as the church, were demolished in the 1920s and 1930s.
PHOTOTYPE K. ZUNA, 1908
399 - Na Slupi Street from the Church of the Annunciation of Our Lady to the Botanical Gardens
The Gothic church dates back to the second half of the 14th century. Its slender tower slightly inclines towards the street, the vaulted ceiling of the square-shaped nave is, in the centre, supported by a single column - hence probably the name of the whole street (on the column). Behind the Church is the former Servite Monastery founded by Charles IV and dissolved in 1783. Until 1850 the former Monastery housed the Military Institute for the Education of the Non-Commissioned Officers of the Infantry Regiment No. 28. The Church and the Monastery building were reconstructed by B. Grueber in the years 1856-1863. Following this reconstruction the former Monastery housed a lunatic asylum. Behind it is Albertov Street and the Elizabethan Order’s Convent. The buildings on the left were built after 1880. he first of them, No. 93, is still wholly within the cadastral limits of Vyšehrad. The dividing line between Vyšehrad and the New Town then curiously continues through the middle of the following five buildings.
PHOTOGRAPHIC POSTCARD. FOTO-FON, AROUND 1923
411 - Komenského (Comenius) Square with the intersection of Sokolská and Ječná Streets
The present plot of the Square was, from the mid-17th century, surrounded by a Baroque bastion. In the 1890s the Square was still dominated by military barracks and a cattle market. The Square itself was officially established in 1898 following the removal of the last remnants of the Nw Town fortification a year previously. It is an example of a truly well-executed piece of city planning which reckoned with larger public green spaces. On the left, in front of the garden wall, we can see a market established here in 1903 by the city of Prague after the Vinohrady Municipal Council had moved its market from the nearby Tylovo Square to a new location. Behind the garden, at the intersection of Ječná and Kateřinská Streets, a new building, new No. 522, stands out from among the older structures. On the corner of Sokolská Street stands building No. 1662, decorated by sgraffiti, and at the extreme right we can see a part of a new building constructed on the site of the former fortification.
PHOTOTYPE. AROUND 1905
412 - Táborská Street between Komenského Square, on the left, and the Royal Bohemian Museum
The street acquired its name from the old road connecting Koňská and Žitná Gates with Nusle and eventually the south Bohemian town of Tábor. But to be quite precise, this old road actually ran through what was to become Havlíčkova Street, so that the name is in fact misleading. The left side of the street is identical with the contour of the former Baroque fortification. It was only after demolition of the fortification that the construction of the buildings in the picture began. In terms of belonging to a particular Prague quarter, Táborská is one of the split Streets: while the left side of the street lies in the New Town, the right side of the street lies in Královské Vinohrady. The most recent building on the right stands on the corner of Komenského Square. It housed the famous Březina Café. The large corner residential building on the left, with its interesting bay and a row of elegant shops, was built in approximately 1895, as was the adjacent building. Behind it we can see the lower rear wing of the Municipal Court.
413 - The Municipal Court of the New Town, No. 1595
On the eastern side of Sokolská Street, opposite the building of the Prague Sokol organization. This bulky Neo-Renaissance building, with two entrances and a rear wing reaching as far as Táborská Street, was built in 1883 at a cost of 155 thousand guldens. The Municipal Courts usually served as firemen’s barracks, and this particular court housed the New Town Fire Service. The basement housed stables, the underground area the fire engines and the control-room. The traffic in the court was not only connected with frequent fires, but on each morning and afternoon it also saw the departure of numerous street cleaners. Compared with other municipal courts in Prague, which were mostly located in mediaeval buildings (see the Old Town Court in picture 146), the New Town Municipal Court was an almost luxurious residence.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. K. BELLMANN, 1899
414 - Komenského Square
A view from the marketplace and the garden wall (see picture 411) towards the east to Karlova Street. The Square is named after the world-famous pedagogue Jan Amos Komenský (Comenius - 1592-1670). In the foreground of the picture, along the line of Sokolská Street, the mediaeval fortification once ran. It was here, at the axis of Ječná Street, that the Svinská (the Hog) Gate once stood, so called after the nearby pig market. After 1694 this gate came to be called Slepá (Blind) as it was walled in in connection with the establishment of a gate at the end of the Horse Market in the Baroque fortification built in front of the mediaeval ramparts in the second half of the 17th century. It also included a bastion, whose blade was on the site of the present-day Karlova Street. The new buildings in the picture, on the site of the former bastion were constructed after 1898. The outgoing four-axle electric tram No. 19, produced by the Křižík factory, operated on a route connecting Spálená Street with Purkyňovo Square.
PHOTOTYPE. L. J. ČECH, AROUND 1900
415 - The western section of a part of Sokolská Street with a view of Mezibranská Street
On the left is the residential building No. 1616 built at the end of the 19th century on the corner of Sokolská and Hálkova Streets on the site of a small factory. Further we can see a two-storey Neo-Renaissance building of the Prague Sokol organization, No. 1437, built by I. Ullmann in 1864 with a large gymnasium, offices and flats for Sokol functionaries. The building was constructed on the site of a former vegetable garden on the initiative and at the expense of J. Fügner, the first head of Sokol, who donated the building to the organization. Sokol started its physical culture activities in the building at the end of 1864. In 1865 the building hosted the first masked ball under the auspices of the organization, an event high on the scale of Czech social importance at this time. After Fügner’s death the building became a home for another legendary figure of the Sokol movement, Dr. Miroslav Tyrš. The next building in the row, Zlatý orel (The Golden Eagle), No. 572, stands on the corner of Žitná Street. A great deal of attention was paid to street cleaning. In the centre of the picture we can see a hose linked to a hydrant, on the right the street cleaners are busy sweeping the already watered part of the street.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. E. ČÍŽEK, 1899
416 - A view of the whole extent of Mezibranská Street between Žitná Street and Václavské Square
The street owes its name (meaning between gates) to its position between the Horse Gate and the Rye Gate which stood in the New Town fortification. The fortification ran along the contour of the buildings on the right. These four-storey residential buildings, Nos. 1579 and 1575, built after 1880, offered a standard of housing substantially higher than was the norm at the time. The block obscures the view of the Čelakovského Public Gardens and of the Museum. In the background, on the corner of Václavské Square, we can see building No. 812, built at approximately the same time. For the buildings on the left see picture 417. In the forefront of the picture was an electric tram line turning into Žitná Street. On both sides of the street we can see the stands of public messengers waiting for their customers (the messengers were members of one of the professions characteristic of the atmosphere of the Monarchy). These men, with numbered red caps, always punctual and reliable, transported con signments of any kind, including express letters, messages, etc.
PHOTOGRAPHIC POSTCARD. PHOTOGRAPHER E. J. KABÁT, VESELÍ-MEZIMOSTÍ. 1901
417 - The western section of Mezibranská Street as seen from the front entrance ramp of the Royal Bohemian Museum
In the picture we can see most of the buildings on this side of the street, beginning with the oldest structure on the right, on the corner of Václavské Square, and ending at the intersection with Žitná Street, forming a continuation of Sokolská Street (see picture 416). The other structures in the block are of a more recent origin: they were built in the period 1840-1895. We should note the lowered level of the road, probably aimed at moderating the ascending terrain for vehicles. Even so, the horse-drawn tram needed another horse and a driver to manage the terrain (the car on the left). The ascent already began in the upper third of Václavské Square where the additional horse was hitched, with the tram continuing on its way with three horses as far as Královské Vinohrady. On the right we can see a detail of a beautifully shaped cast-iron lamp-post with two gas lanterns.
COLOURED PHOTOTYPE. E. ČÍŽEK, AROUND 1899
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