praha.eu | magistrat.praha.eu | pis.cz
This content requires Adobe Flash Player and a browser with JavaScript enabled.
Built on Flash Panorama Player.
Hradcany - Prague 1 Category: Church towers

Church of the Virgin Mary Angelic at Hradčany

GPS: 50°5'22.92"N, 14°23'26.88"E

The church of the Virgin Mary Angelic is a simple single-aisle religious building, is situated in the lower part of Loretánské Square in Hradčany. It is a part of the capuchins’ monastery complex. This is the oldest building complex of the Order of Capuchins in the Czech Republic. It has been more than 400 years since its foundation. In that time 12 members of the Order of Capuchins came to Bohemia from Italy led by Laurence from Brindisi (later canonized).

The church and the monastery are popular amongst Prague citizens and visitors for their unique Nativity scene from 1780, which includes 43 life size figures. Unknown even today, a member of the order spent 10 years creating it.

The foundation stone of the church was laid on 23rd May 1600 and the construction was completed by 7th July 1601. In line with the Order’s regulations a simple sanctuary had been created here with rectangular aisle and oblong sacrarium. The aisle has square chapels situated at its sides. The monastery was being built at the same time as the church. The complex is connected with the neighbouring Loretta by a corridor bridge. The church was damaged in 1757 by Prussian gunnery during the siege of Prague. In memory of this event the cannonballs were moulded into the outside wall.

The dominant feature of this church and of the whole complex is the steeple situated on the aisle roof. The steeple has a square ground plan and it is divided by a distinctive cornice into two parts. Above the cornice there are arched windows, covered with sun-blinds. The roof of the tower is pyramidal and crowned with spire and finial. The steeple houses a bell made in 1714 by bell-founder, Mikuláš Löwa from Prague.