Church of St. Nicholas (Sv. Mikulas)

Church of St. Nicholas (Sv. Mikulas) (11)

On the north side of the Old Town Square, until the 20th century the impressive façade of the church of Saint Nicholas was hidden. The church has given a whitish air to the whole square since Krenn House was demolished, which had hidden it until after the Second World War.

There was a parish church standing here as far back as the 12th century, built by German traders. It was the biggest building in the Old Town until the construction of Our Lady Before Týn, also in this square. The original building was used as a centre for the local authorities until the Town Hall was built.

After 1620 and the Battle of White Mountain, the church of Saint Nicholas came to form part of the Benedictine monastery.

The Works of the current church follow the designs of Kilian Ignaz Dientzenhofer, the main Baroque architect in Bohemia. It was completed in 1735.

During the First World War it was used as a military headquarters for the troops of the city. That was when the officer in charge decided to undertake the restoration works. To do this he employed artists that had been recruited as soldiers and in this way they managed to escape their being sent to the front.

At the end of the war, the church of Saint Nicholas was handed over to the Czechoslovakian Hussite Church and it continues to be their main centre.

The whole building is an example of what is the best of Prague Baroque. Its marked verticality responds above all to the lack of space at the time of its construction. On the façade you will be able to see the original sculptures by Antonín Braun. The stucco is the work by Bernard Spiretti.

Inside the church there are architectural aspects that make it beautiful, such as balconies, cornices and caryatids. If you look up, you will see the frescos by the artist Cosma Damian Asam on the cupola. These frescos narrate the life of Saint Nicholas and some scenes from the Old Testament.

Inside the small golden cupola is painted the history of Saint Benedict. Over the nave of the church there is an enormous lantern in the form of a crown.

If you visit Prague in summer, you will be able to attend the concerts that are held in the church of Saint Nicholas.

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