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Smiřický Palace, Home of the Czech Chamber of Deputies
Prague is one of the most culturally rich cities in Europe, and it’s well-known for its gorgeous Baroque buildings. Most of the buildings in the city were constructed centuries ago, and they’ve been able to weather the elements and stand the test of time. One such building is the Smiřický Palace Prague, which is located in Malostranské náměstí or Lesser Town Square. Smiřický Palace in Prague features an off-white facade with large, glass windows that overlook the cobblestoned streets of the Town Square.
The Smiřický Palace in Prague was rebuilt with the Baroque style back in the 18th century and very little of it has been changed since then. Today, the Palace is one of the buildings being used by the Czech Republic’s Chamber of Deputies, which is the lower house of the Parliament of the Czech Republic.
Brief History of the Smiřický Palace, Prague
The Smiřický Palace in Prague is also rich in history and played a key role in the Thirty Years’ War. Back in 1573, the land that the Palace is located on was part of a medieval housing complex. A man by the name of Jindřich Smiřický from Smiřice purchased the front house, and he had a Renaissance palace built in its place. This became the Smiřický family home.
By 1603, Smiřický Palace, Prague was enhanced with corner towers under the reign of Sigismund Smiřický, the head of the family. It became grander and larger with the renovation, making it one of the city’s most notable and eye-catching buildings. In fact, Smiřický Palace, Prague was so prominent that it became the gathering place for Czech nobles, as they plotted their rebellion against the then rulers of Habsburg.
On May 23, 1618, a day after laying out their plans, the Czech nobles stormed the Prague Castle. Once there, they threw two councilors of Habsburg out of a window. This event signaled the Second Defenestration of Prague, and it soon launched the Thirty Years’ War.
The Thirty Years’ War is viewed as one of the bloodiest, most devastating, and most destructive wars in European history. During the War, roughly eight million people, both military and civilians, were killed. This event ultimately put an end to the Holy Roman Empire.
The Modern Smiřický Palace, Prague
Following the Thirty Years’ War, Smiřický Palace Prague was passed from family to family—most notably among the Wallensteins, Pernštejns, Sinzendorfs, and Carmelites. In 1763, the palace fell to Pavel Montág. Working with designer Josef Jäger, Montág had the entire Palace renovated and expanded. Another floor was added to the Smiřický Palace, and it was remodeled to fit the Baroque style it has today.
A century after its renovation, the Provincial Assembly of the Kingdom of Bohemia took ownership of the Smiřický Palace in Prague. It was then redesigned to suit the needs of the Chamber of Deputies, and it has remained relatively the same ever since.
Visiting the Smiřický Palace in Prague
Architecture enthusiasts would surely enjoy visiting the Prague Smiřický Palace. It’s right at the heart of Lesser Town. It’s easily accessible via public transport, and visitors can explore a variety of pubs, restaurants, and shops in the area. Many international embassies are also situated in the square.