Kutna Hora: Wikis

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Kutná Hora
Town
Flag
Coat of arms
Country  Czech Republic
Region Central Bohemian
District Kutná Hora
Commune Kutná Hora
River Vrchlice
Elevation 254 m (833 ft)
Coordinates 49°57′N 15°16′E / 49.95°N 15.267°E / 49.95; 15.267
Area 33.05 km2 (12.76 sq mi)
Population 21,142
Density 640 /km2 (1,658 /sq mi)
Founded 13th century
Mayor Ivo Šalátek
Timezone CET (UTC+1)
 - summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 284 01
UNESCO World Heritage Site
Name Historical Town Centre with the Church of St. Barbara and the Cathedral of Our Lady at Sedlec
Year 1995 (#19)
Number 732
Region Europe and North America
Criteria ii, iv
Location in the Czech Republic
Location in the Czech Republic
Wikimedia Commons: Kutná Hora
Statistics: statnisprava.cz
Website: www.kutnahora.info

Kutná Hora (Czech pronunciation: [ˈkutnaː ˈɦora]  ( listen); medieval Czech: Hory Kutné; German: Kuttenberg) is a city in Bohemia, now the Czech Republic in the Central Bohemian Region.

Contents

History

The town began in 1142 with the settlement of the first Cistercian Monastery in Bohemia, Kloster Sedlitz, brought from the reichsunmittelbar Cistercian Imperial Waldsassen Abbey. By 1260 German miners began to mine for silver in the mountain region, which they named Kuttenberg, and which was part of the monastery property. The name of the mountain is said to have arrived from the miners workclothes garb (the Kutten). Under Abot Heinrich Heidenreich the territory greatly advanced due to the silver mines which gained importance during the economic boom of the 13th century.

The earliest traces of silver have been found dating back to the 10th century, when Bohemia already was in the crossroads of long-distance trade for many centuries. Silver dinars have been discovered belonging to the period between 982-995 in the settlement of Malín, which is now a part of Kutná Hora.

From the 13th to 16th centuries the city competed with Prague economically, culturally and politically.[1] Since 1995 the city center has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site.[2]

In 1300 when King Wenceslaus II of Bohemia issued the new royal mining code Ius regale montanorum. This was a legal document that specified all administrative as well as technical terms and conditions necessary for the operation of mines.[3] The city developed with great rapidity, and at the outbreak of the Hussite Wars in 1419 was next to Prague the most important in Bohemia, having become the favourite residence of several Bohemian kings. It was here that, on January 18, 1409, Wenceslaus IV signed the famous Decree of Kutná Hora, by which the Czech university nation was given three votes in the elections to the faculty of Prague University as against one for the three other nations.

In 1420 Emperor Sigismund made the city the base for his unsuccessful attack on the Taborites during the Hussite Wars; Kuttenberg (Kutná Hora) was taken by Jan Žižka, and after a temporary reconciliation of the warring parties was burned by the imperial troops in 1422, to prevent its falling again into the hands of the Taborites. Žižka nonetheless took the place, and under Bohemian auspices it awoke to a new period of prosperity.

Along with the rest of Bohemia, Kuttenberg (Kutná Hora) passed to the Habsburg Monarchy of Austria in 1526. In 1546 the richest mine was hopelessly flooded; in the insurrection of Bohemia against Ferdinand I the city lost all its privileges; repeated visitations of the plague and the horrors of the Thirty Years' War completed its ruin. Half-hearted attempts after the peace to repair the ruined mines failed; the town became impoverished, and in 1770 was devastated by fire. The mines were abandoned at the end of the 18th century.

At Kuttenberg (Kutna Hora) Prague groschen were minted until 1547.

Kuttenberg became part of the Austrian Empire in 1806 and the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1866. The city became part of Czechoslovakia after World War I and the collapse of Austria-Hungary. Kutná Hora was incorporated into the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia by Nazi Germany from 1939-1945, but was restored to Czechoslovakia after World War II. The city became part of the Czech Republic in 1993 during the dissolution of Czechoslovakia.

Architecture

Kutná Hora and the neighboring town of Sedlec are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Among the most important buildings in the area are the Gothic, five-naved St. Barbara's Church, begun in 1388, and the Italian Court, formerly a royal residence and mint, which was built at the end of the 13th century. The Gothic Stone Haus, which since 1902 has served as a museum, contains one of the richest archives in the country. The Gothic St. James's Church, with its 86 metre tower, is another prominent building. Sedlec is the site of the Gothic Cathedral of Our Lady and the famous Ossuary.

Main sights

  • Cathedral of Our Lady (Chrám Nanebevzetí Pany Marie)
  • St. Barbara Church (Kostel Svaté Barbory)
  • Sedlec Ossuary (Kostnice Sedlec)
  • Church of St. James (Kostel sv. Jakuba)
  • Church of St. John Nepomuk (Kostel sv. Jana Nepomuckého)
  • Church of Ursuline Convent (Kostel Kláštera Voršilek)
  • Jesuit College (Jezuitská kolej)
  • Italian Court (Vlašský dvůr)
  • Marian column (Morový sloup)

Gallery

International relations

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Twin towns — Sister cities

Kutná Hora is twinned with:

See also

References

External links


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Kutna Hora article)

From Wikitravel

Church in Kutná Hora
Church in Kutná Hora

Kutná Hora [1] is a town in the Bohemia region of the Czech Republic.

Understand

Kutná Hora was a silver mining town in medieval times: once the second Czech city to Prague in terms of population. Today it is home to about 21000 people.

Although Kutná Hora has some comparatively drab modern architecture, it was enscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1995 for the Historical Town Centre, including the Church of St Barbara and the Cathedral of Our Lady at Sedlec. At both ends of the town there are some beautiful buildings, and the higher points of the town are home to restored older architecture, with Medieval, Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque buildings.

Get in

There are trains roughly hourly from Prague leaving either Hlavní nádraží or Masarykovo nádraží (see time schedule at [2]). Most trains will require you to change from the express at Kolín to a local train and disembark at Kutná Hora two stops later, but there are direct express trains several times a day. A ticket is 98 Kč, 62 Kč concession with a Z-card. Journey time is one hour if you catch an express to Kolín, one hour thirty minutes if you catch a local to Kolín. In the other direction, Kutná Hora is on the line from Brno.

There are buses roughly hourly from Prague leaving the Florenc bus station, some direct and some requiring interchange at Kolín. A direct bus is around 70 Kč, a bus via Kolín about 90 Kč. Journey time is one hour twenty minutes direct, one hour forty minutes via Kolín.

Kutná Hora Train Station
Kutná Hora Train Station

Get around

The town is about three kilometers in length, so it is possible to explore Kutná Hora on foot. This isn't particularly rewarding though, as most of it is residential and the attractions (with the exception of the Kostnice Ossuary) are concentrated at the other end of town from the train station.

There is a local bus system with buses arriving to meet the trains. If you want to return to the train station from the historical core, take the bus that says "Hlavni Nádraží " on the front window. A single ride for adults costs 9 crowns and will leave you right at the train station.

There is also local train connecting historical core (station "Kutná Hora město") and the main station "Kutná Hora hlavní nádraží". It meets the arrival of nearly all the express trains. You can buy the train ticket from the local station "Kutná Hora město" directly to Prague. The price will be the same as the price from "Kutná Hora hlavní nádraží" to Prague.

There are also taxis: usually one or two will meet the train, otherwise they can be a little difficult to find. Unlike in Prague, it is safe to hail them in the street: they won't overcharge. A taxi ride from one end of town to the other is about 80 Kč.

Additional Information

  • When you arrive at Kutná Hora you may get the Number 1 bus to Kutná Hora Město (Kutná Hora Town Center) or wait at the station for the train that goes to Kutná Hora Město. There are 3 stops, but you're better off at Kutná Hora Mešto.
  • If you feel fit ...

Then, walking is your best bet. When you leave the station, go right until you reach the first intersection (about 3min walk). Then turn left and walk for another 5-8 minutes (it depends on how quickly you walk) and you will come to the church on your left (more details to follow) and the Ossuary on your right. At the Ossuary you need to pay a fee to enter (50Kč) and another one to take pictures (30 Kč).

After you finish with the Ossuary, you can walk to the town center without any problems. Go back to the main road and turn right. You're now about 2,5km from the town center.

All you have to do is to follow the road signs until you reach the main attractions in the town center. You cannot miss the St. Barbara's Cathedral and the Hrádek - Czech museum of silver.

Chandelier made of human bones, Kostnice Ossuary
Chandelier made of human bones, Kostnice Ossuary
  • Kostnice Ossuary [3], Zamecka 127. ph 327 561 143. email info@kostnice.cz. In 1278, Henry, the abbot of Sedlec was sent to the Holy Land. On returning, he brought soil from Golgotha and sprinkled it on the ground here. As a consequence, the burial ground was considered holy and became extremely popular. In 1511 a chapel was constructed to house the bones from abolished graves. The chapel is open to the public, and contains the bones of about 40000 people, arranged by František Rint in 1870. Rint's work includes an enormous chandelier including every bone in the body, and a crucifix style arrangement near the main altar. The ossuary is open 8am - 6pm (April - September), 9am - 12pm and 1pm - 5pm (October) and 9am - 12pm and 1pm - 4pm (November - March). Closed on 24th December. Admission is 50 Kč adults and 30 Kč students. It will cost another 30 Kč if you wish to take photos and 60 Kč if you want to take video. Watch out for the very cranky attendants who close the place for an hour at mid-day.
  • Church of St. Barbara

The Church of Saint Barbara is located at the opposite end of the Kutná Hora's train station. If you wish to start your tour from there, you may want to get a taxi from the station to the Church and then walk your way around the town center.

Church of St. Barbara
Church of St. Barbara

A bit of the church's history

The works on the church started around 1380 by Peter Parler's workshop, whose other great work in the Czech Republic includes the imposing St. Vitus Cathedral at the Prague Castle.

The eye-catching spires are really magnificent! If you're looking for some fantastic Gothic Bohemian style, St. Barbara Church is certainly one of them alongside St. Vitus in Prague

  • Cathedral of Our Lady At Sedlac
  • Italian Courtyard, Royal Mint and former Royal Residence.
  • Silver Mines, Flooded in the middle ages, tours of the accessible portions of the mines are provided daily, except for Mondays (usual closing day for sights in the Czech Republic). The mines are closed in winter (November–March).
  • Hrádek, Czech museum of silver. Silver mines tours start here.
  • Torture Museum, Italian Court. A hilariously inauthentic "museum" filled with the most amazing Engrish in the Western hemisphere. Anyone who enjoys movies so bad they're great will be fully satisfied. 50 crowns.  edit

Eat

Generally, the staff in restaurants around St. Barbara's Cathedral are friendlier and (oddly) more professional than in Prague. There are a number of bars, restaurants and cafes just underneath the shadow of the cathedral. Some provide a breathtaking view of the valley to the south. The best experience I have had personally was at the restaurant U Hrnčiře (By the Jug Maker's). The food is excellent with traditional Czech dishes alongside a surprising array of vegetarian dishes.

Sleep

Most of the hotels in Kutná Hora you can find on the Kutná Hora website under accommodation. (www.kutnahora.cz/index.php?sec=11&cid=154)

Here is one very nice hotel.

  • Hotel Garni Na Havlíčku, Havlíčkovo náměstí 513, 28401 Kutná Hora (Just below the main square of Kutna Hora.), 00420327515773, [4]. checkin: 10pm; checkout: 10am. Nice mid range hotel. Free internet, good sized room. Free breakfast. 1050Kč/night.  edit

Get out

In order to return to the train station you can:

  • walk back to the station (about 3.5km)
  • get a cab
  • take the bus number 1
  • get the train from Kutná Hora Město to Kutná Hora Hlavní nádraží

Once you're back to the station, you can:

  • Get the next train to Kolín and change for the train to Praha Hlavní Nádraží
  • Wait for the direct service to Praha Hlavní Nádraží

Other options are:

  • There are also bus service to and from Prague, but trains seemed to be pretty reliable and ran on time.
  • You can also take a cab back to Prague, which would cost you around 1600Kc.
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