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Písek Gate (Písecká brána)

The Písek Gate was formerly a part of the Baroque fortifications of Prague known as the Marian Walls. It is wedged between the bastions of St George and St Ludmila. You'll find it close to the Summer Palace of Queen Anne, a short distance away from the Hradčanská metro station. After viewing the gallery, you can take a break in the pleasant café, which is a part of the premises.

Písek Gate (Písecká brána), K Brusce 5, Praha 6 - Hradčany, 160 00
Web: http://www.piseckabrana.cz, e-mail: info@piseckabrana.cz
tel.: +420233321313, +420724737352

Opening hours

January – December

Tuesday
11.00 – 19.00
Wednesday
11.00 – 19.00
Thursday
11.00 – 19.00
Friday
11.00 – 19.00
Saturday
11.00 – 19.00
Sunday
11.00 – 19.00

Object history

Písecká Gate

Out of the seven gates, which completed the Prague ramparts during the Baroque era, only three were preserved until today: Táborská and Leopold’s Gates and Písecká Gate at Hradčany. The Písecká Gate was a part of the Baroque fortifications on the left bank of the Vltava River. Besides this one, there were also the Strahovská and Újezdská Gates in the ramparts, and twenty bastions named after the saint patrons. The ramparts were named Marian, after the little Church of Virgin Mary of Help at Ramparts, which used to be located in the neighbourhood of the Písecká Gate. The church was built in the years 1756 - 61 by architect Antonín Fidelis Palliardi. Its only remains can be found in the little house of the toll collector. The Marian fortification was built in the second half of the 17th century and in the first half of the 18th century, and it went from today’s Government Seat up the hill and then via a great curve to Strahov and past Petřín back down towards the Vltava. The ramparts limited the city life, and they were opened and closed according to the seasons of the year. In the mid-19th century, they were closed at 9 p.m. in the summer and at 8 p.m. in the winter; latecomers could only pass the gate for a respective fee. Even the Baroque ramparts, however, failed to protect the city at times of war, and moreover, they prevented Prague’s development. They were demolished in 1898. Only the Písecká Gate was preserved, the others had to give way to the city growth. Písecká Gate was protected from demolition by its position, as it did not stand in the way of the construction.

Písecká Gate was the third gate carrying this name: the first one was from the 13th century on in Valdštejnská Street and it was demolished during the construction of the Valdštejn Palace, and the second was situated above Klárov until 1829 by the house No. 132. The name Písecká is derived from the name of the Malá Strana settlement Na Písku. Today’s Písecká Gate is located directly opposite to the Chotek’s Park. The gate is also called Bruská after the Bruska Stream, the bed of which used to pass the Deer Moat towards the Vltava, or also Charles’ Gate after Emperor Charles IV during whose reign it was built.

Písecká Gate was built by Kryštof Dientzenhofer in 1721 between the St. George and St. Ludmila Bastions; the author of the graphic design was the imperial builder Giovanni Battista Alliprandi, with the draft by ing. J. Vogel. The facade is richly lined by processed stone. In the middle, there is a semi-circular passage for the vehicles with a decorative motive of an old-man’s head, and on the sides, there are smaller passages for the pedestrians. The sculptural decoration on the gate in the form of an eagle is the work of sculptor Jan Oldřich Mayer. From 1828 on, the horse track to Lány passed this gate, and from 1843 on also the steam railway to Olomouc and later also to Dresden.

The gate went through the first stage of reconstruction in the years 2000 - 2002, getting into the administration of the Community of Architects. A gallery was opened here, and a café and the office of the Community of Architects. The reconstruction’s main architect was Petr Fuchs. Písecká Gate was festively opened via an exhibition on Czechoslovak Legions 1914 - 1920 in 2003.

 

Show history