History of Prague
Prague is the capital city of the Czech Republic. It is also the biggest city there and it is on the 14th place of its size in the EU countries. It lies on the Vltava River; in the Central Bohemian Region but it is a separate region not its part. The population of this area is about 2 million people.
It took eleven centuries to have the nowadays form. Prague as a historical metropolis was always a seat for Czech dukes and kings and also for Roman-German Caesars. The ninth century brought the bases of Prague Castle and the new medieval metropolis began to breathe. From the 12th century well-known boroughs such as the Old Town or Hradčany started to appear. Later on building up of Charles Bridge and St. Vitus Cathedral initiated. The foundation of Charles University and The New Town of Prague followed.
There were several ruling dynasties in Prague. Hapsburgs were one of the most significant. During their reign Prague got fame and influence. Unfortunately their reign ended in a religious terror against the protestant Christian Churches. Because of the influence of this reign Prague had a breakdown and was Germanized. This made it lose its fame and rights. On the turn of 16th and 17th century Prague was besieged several times by the Swiss and that was followed by overrunning of the French – Bavarian soldiers, later by the Prussians.
A very important event of the history was the connection of four at that time independent Prague cities in 1748. In the following time period the Industrial Revolution as well as the Czech National Revival began. During this time Prague got its new face. Due to the Revival Prague was slowly getting rid of the German influence. The significant fact was when the foundation stone of the National Theater was laid.
After the declaration of the first republic, Prague became the capital city of Czechoslovakia. Between the years 1939- 1945 the town experienced the German Nazi occupation followed by the Soviet army liberation and the epoch of the Communistic tough reign. In 1989 the Velvet revolution brought the end of Communism and Václav Havel was elected president.
In 1993 Czechoslovakia was divided into two countries and the independent Czech Republic was one of them. Václav Havel was elected the head of the state again in the first liberal election. During his regime Prague became again the centre of culture and received increased attention globally. In 2002 Prague was hit by a five-hundred-year devastating flood from which it took the city several years to recover.
In the following years Prague became the centre of tourist trade. The business expanded and Prague turned into an economical metropolis with high life standards. Last but not least event which brought attention to Prague was the funeral of Václav Havel. Prague was veiled in mourning for several weeks.
The history of Prague is a fascinating story which goes back far into the past. Let’s remember the dates of the most significant events which helped to form the nowadays look of Prague.
The beginning of the 9th century: the foundation of Prague Castle, St. Vitus Cathedral, Prague Episcopacy
10th century: the foundation of Vyšehrad
1172: building up Judith Bridge, connecting two river banks of the Vltava River
1346-1378: Charles’ IV era, Prague became the capital city of the Czech kingdom and Holy Roman Empire, the construction of Charles Bridge and Charles University was established – the first university in Europe
15th century: the effort to reform the Church, the Hussites movement was strengthen by a very important persona Jan Hus – a reformer and a preacher who was burn because of his ideas
16th century: the reign of Hapsburgs, Prague was getting the influence and was going through the Germanizing
1784: the connection of four at that time independent Prague cities (Hradčany, the Lesser Town, the Old and New Town)
18th-19th century: the time of the Industrial Revolution and the Czech National Revival
1918: the foundation of independent Czechoslovakia, Prague is the capital city of the new country
1939-1945: the German Nazi occupation
1945: Prague’s liberation by the Soviet army
1948: The reign was taken over by the communistic party
1968: Prague Spring – the effort to do the socialism reform, but it was suppressed by five states of the Warsaw Pact
1989: the Velvet revolution, the end of Communism, Václav Havel was elected president
1990: First independent election
1993: Czechoslovakia split, the foundation of the Czech Republic with the president Václav Havel
2000: Prague was selected a town of culture with other several cities, the IMF conference took place
2002: a five-hundred-year flood
2011: Prague veiled in mourning for several weeks because of Václav Havel’s death