Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Elegant Elbe: Prague 4b (5/23/2018)

Wednesday, May 23, 2018 (continued)
From the new hotel, we walked a few blocks to the Anděl Metro station, catching the Line B train. I had us transfer at Florenc to Line C to Vyšehrad, the old fortress in the south of Prague. Peter used his GPS, and his route to reach the castle did not match mine! Partly because I wanted to minimize transfers, and partly because I had planned to start at the "back" of the fortress.
The outermost gate, Tábor Gate/
Táborská Brána (circa 1683)
Water pump at the ruins of the second gate,
Špička Gate/Brána Špička (1348-1350)
Leopold Gate/Leopoldova Brána (1653-1672, by Carlo Lurago)
Legend has it that whenever there is a full moon, the gate is occupied by the ghost of a French major, who was tragically killed here when Vyšehrad was occupied by the French army. The ghost was said to choke the soldiers who stood sentry here, and bullets shot at him flew through his body. Thus, the soldiers who stood sentry here were always on edge.
An over-the-fence view of the fortress walls reveals
a clay tennis court below!
Rotunda of St Martin (11C), the oldest
building in Prague, but much restored
The upper round spot is a cannonball from the
bombing of Prague by Prussia in 1757
A vineyard on top of the wine cellar
The Gothic Cellar had a small museum about Vyšehrad.
Commemorative items from merging of
Vyšehrad with Prague in 1883
Ruins of Libuše Bath, actually a watchtower, but legend says that Libuše
would bathe with her lovers here, then throw them into the Vltava River
View towards Prague with the Prague Castle in the distance (KSS)
Princess Libuše succeeded her father as the first woman ruler of the Czech tribes. She noticed the discord of her clansman, so married a plowman, Přemysl Oráč, to begin the 400-year dynasty of the Přemyslids. From a promontory of her castle she prophesied: "I see a great city whose glory will touch the stars." Libuše has grown mythical proportions.
Vyšehrad Gallery (our Prague Card saved us $1
admission to the small one-room gallery)
We Are Family Exhibition by Jana Farmanová,
having something to do with memories
Vyšehrad Well/Studna (KSS)
Legendary bard Lumír with Píseň/
Song(1889-1897, by Josef Václav Myslbek for
the Palacký Bridge/Palackého most)
After World War II bombing, this and the accompanying three statues were moved from the bridge to Vyšehrad to allow for bridge repair, and never returned.
Přemysl and Libuše (1889-1897,
 by Josef Václav Myslbek)
Ctirad and Šárka (1889-1897, by Josef Václav Myslbek),
from Slavic mythology
Záboj and Slavoj (1889-1897, by
Josef Václav Myslbek), a pair of heroic brothers
from Czech epic poems
Basilica of Sts Peter and Paul (est 1070-1080,
rebuilt many times, most recently in 1885-1903
by Josef Mocker)
Vyšehrad Cemetery/Hřbitov Vyšehrad (est 1869) (KSS)
Tomb of Jan Neruda, Czech journalist, writer, and poet
Tomb of Bedřich Smetana, Czech composer
Slavin (1889-1893, by Antonin Wiehl),
 a common tomb for Czech "celebrities"
Including Alfons Mucha, artist and designer
Restoring a grave marker
A toy duck left on a child's tomb
Tomb of Antonín Dvořák, Czech composer
Bust (1910, by Štěpán Zálešák) of Václav Svatopoluk Štulc,
a Roman Catholic priest who who was sentenced to prison for his
anti-Habsburg sentiments; he was also a poet and writer
Baroque statue of St Wenceslas that was removed
from Wenceslas Square in 1879 to a warehouse;
whereupon Václav Svatopoluk Štulc, at his own expense,
had it moved to this park behind the cemetery
Hidden in a back corner of Vyšehrad is a
summer theater stage/Letní Scéna
Devil's Columns/Certuv sloup, a formation of columns with
unknown origin, which were first mentioned in medieval chronicles
Theories are that the columns are from an earlier Romanesque church, or may have been a device for measuring time by the first Slavs. The legend is that a priest bet the devil that he could say Mass quicker than the devil could bring a column from Rome to Vyšehrad. St Peter assisted the priest to win, and the devil threw down the column in anger, causing it to break and land in this formation.
We left Vyšehrad through the Brick Gate/Cihelná Brána (1841)
We walked down the hill through a residential area of apartment blocks.
Satellite dishes
A Cubist building (1913-1914, by Josef Chochol)
at #98/30 Neklanova Street
Kovařovicova vila, a Cubist House (1913,
 by Josef Chochol) at #49/3 Libušina Street
A tiny Ford KA
Triplex Cubist houses (1913, by Josef Chochol)
at #42/6, #47/8 and #71/10 Rašínovo Embankment
The central house of the Cubist triplex
The road going under the ruins of Libuše Bath
Customs House/Podskalská celnice na Výtoni (building purchased in 1561
to be used as the toll house, collecting from the woodcutters who
floated logs down the river); the privilege of collecting tolls was given
in the 13C to the town of Podskalí at this location (KSS)
Next: Prague 4c.

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