Prague Baroque Art Private 4 Hour Walking Tour
Prague is the treasure of Baroque art and artists from all over Europe decorated the Prague churches, libraries, gardens and the Charles Bridge with the statues of saints. Join our guide to discover it. Those who love Baroque art will enjoy this tour of baroque churches, statues, palaces, art museums and gardens. In these places you will see the work of the famous architects from Dietzenhoffer family, J.B. Santini Aichl and F.M. Kanka.
Tickets to attractions are not included in the tour price.
Prague is full of Baroque architecture. Many Gothic buildings were during the 17th century converted according to the new fashion and rules. New and mighty fortifications were built because of the Swedish army sieged on Prague during the Thirty Years War. As a result of the War the city became depopulated; newcomers were buying lands and built houses in the new fashion. Prague was gradually changing into a big Baroque fortress.
To build and convert was however possible only for those with means, which is the aristocracy, rich townsfolk and mainly the church. Therefore there were lots of church buildings and only a few town houses as their development started many years later.
Design rules of religious architecture were firmly set. A fundamental principle is the use of space whose spaciousness had to astound and make a strong impression of people’s inner feelings. An important role was also played by light, shadows and rich colours accompanied by gold mosaic or paint. Vital were various types of vaults, onion shaped domes with a strong layer of brick or stone wall and rich stucco decoration on both inner and outer sides. Houses and churches had quite often a Gothic ground plan. One example is e.g. St Tomas Church at Lesser Town.
The famous Baroque master builder Kilian Ignac Dientzenhofer participated on its renovation, painting and sculpture decoration was done by Vaclav Vavrinec Reiner and Ferdinand Maxmilian Borkof.
The important building in the style Baroque is the St. Nicholas Church at Lesser Town Square that was built by de Orsiny and after his death finished by Francesco Lurago. And we shouldn’t also forget Strahov Monastery and Loreta.
Gardens also underwent a significant change. Many plots were bought and united and that gave a rise to several large baroquely designed gardens. The most famous in Prague is Wallenstein Garden with a palace that was founded between 1627 and 1630 and was named after its original owner Albrecht von Wallenstein. This building is currently the seat of CR Senate. An interesting design has a garden at Troja Chateau that served as a summer retreat for the family of Sternberks. These days the chateau and gardens are open to the public and various cultural events take place here. Some other Lesser Town gardens such as Vrtbov, Palffy and Ledebur were designed in the same style as well and fortunately they are currently open to public.
Prague Castle underwent some changes as well even though it happened in the time of late Baroque during the reign of Marie Theresa of Austria.
The original Jesuit school was changed to the National Library Klementinum in Old Town. It is one of the biggest complexes of Baroque buildings.
When walking through Brogue Prague we can’t miss a big quantity of palaces and town houses. Let’s name e.g. Czernin Palace at Hradcany and some other objects standing at Hradcany Square and in Baroque style the converted Martinic Palace, Morzin and Thun Palaces, houses in Neruda and Tomas streets.