One ordinary night in Prague


The retired teacher Ludmila Seidlova was a teenager during the Second World War. In her choice of profession she was inspired by her father who was headmaster at the so-called "Teachers' Institute" in Panska Street, just off Prague's famous Na Prikope Street. Ludmila Seidlova lived with her family right in the school, originally built by the Piarist Order in the 18th century.

"My surname was Sornerova then and my father was school headmaster at the Teachers' Institute in Prague where we lived, too. One night my dad was snoring really badly, so my mum made another bed for him in another room.

"And precisely that night, when we were all sleeping - the Gestapo came to our house looking for some fugitive. They rang the bell around one o'clock, came in and saw we had an extra bed in our flat. And immediately they started suspecting that we were hiding someone. But luckily, my mother spoke German, so she explained to them the situation with my father being a noisy sleeper. So it all turned out well for us. We never found out whether they really caught the man they were looking for, but the rumour was that someone really had been sleeping in the attic of the ancient building of the former Piarist College."