Charles Bridge Tower

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This high-gothic tower from the workshop of the distinguished master builder Petr Parléř is one of the most beautiful examples of gothic architecture in Europe. The foundations of the sandstone tower were laid together with the foundations of the Charles Bridge, and its construction was completed in 1380.

It is conceived as a defence tower, but it also has a high aesthetic value and unique sculptural decorations as part of the Royal Way. A symbolic apparition occurs on St. Vitus’ Day (15 June) when the shadow of the head of the lion falls on an escutcheon below it, which depicts an eagle. This symbolically affirms the link between Bohemia and Moravia. Other statues have been similarly placed whose number and amount of decorative elements have a hidden meaning connected with astrology.

The first floor used to contain a guardhouse, while the second floor served as a jail for debtors from wealthy families. Another feature worth mentioning is the mysterious statue of the so-called Tower Man from the middle of the 15th century, which stands on a column at the end of the stairway.

 

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