Charles Bridge in Prague celebrating 650 years
Prague's famous Charles Bridge celebrates its 650th anniversary on Sunday. One of the oldest and certainly one of the most beautiful bridges in Europe, this ancient artery across the Vltava river links Prague's Lesser Town with the Old Town on the right bank and was vital to the development of the Czech capital.
"Charles Bridge is the most important monument connected with Emperor Charles IV who was of the house of Luxembourg and had a Bohemian mother, and is a historic link between the Czech lands and German-speaking countries, France, Western Europe."
The date and time for the launch of the enterprise was chosen carefully. Legend has it that the stone was laid exactly at 5:31 in the morning. When the numbers of the year, day, month and time are lined next to each other, they form a palindromic number 1 3 5 7 9 7 5 3 1, which was carved into the Old Town bridge tower. It took about 50 years to complete the bridge and neither the Emperor nor the architect lived to see the day. When Parler died in 1397, people could already walk across the bridge, but it was not fully completed until 1407 when the taller of the two Lesser Town bridge towers was built.
"I think it is a unique jewel in the crown of the fantastic and unbelievable history of the city of Prague. It is not only a bridge and a major transportation hub, but it is also a mirror of different and unusual architectural styles which you can see in Prague, encompassing the early Gothic right up to the Baroque period - with its fantastic statues, and I am glad to say that Charles Bridge is going to be renovated."
When was the last time you walked across the bridge yourself?