Fall Colors, Picture 1, Edited Version, Haje, Prague, CZ, 2013

Prague Without The Trains or the Cameraphone

Among Jon Searles' albums



Hladova Zed, Picture 2, Prague, CZ, 2006

01 Sep 2007 138
For a city wall that was, at least allegedly, never intended for use, the Hladova Zed is very well fortified with fortresses for troops, ammunition, weapons, and so on, especially towards the top of Petrin Hill. Most of these buildings are unoccupied, though, without even any ruins or museums inside them, so I don't know whether they were ever completed originally.

St. Vitus's Cathedral Framed By Trees, Prague, CZ,…

01 Sep 2007 143
This is another shot taken just through the gate on the Hladova Zed (seen in some of my other shots).

Hladova Zed (Hunger Wall), Prague, CZ, 2006

01 Sep 2007 180
The Hladova Zed, or Hunger Wall, is another landmark of Prague, built during the reign of Karluv IV as a government jobs project for the unemployed. It got its name, supposedly, because it prevented workers from going hungry, but it may have also been intended for use during a seige.

Hotel Mercure, Prague, CZ, 2006

01 Sep 2007 248
I'll be the first to admit that I don't know a lot about the Hotel Mercure (which is on Na Porici, near Namesti Republiky, if you want to take a look), other than that I like the Neo-Baroque architecture on it. This shot just looked like it would be an attractive one to take, so I did.

St. Vitus's Cathedral Seen From Hladova Zed, Pragu…

01 Sep 2007 227
Here's another view of St. Vitus and the Hradcany, from one of the gates of the Hladova Zed. The exposure was hard to get right when I shot it, even with five brackets, so I took the best one and burned it in Photoshop, and this is what I got.

U Sladku, Prague, CZ, 2006

01 Sep 2007 169
I'm not sure why I included this one, exactly. It's probably that I like the contrast between the blazing sunlight on the building and the dark blue sky behind. The colors themselves look nice, and they complement each other somehow.

Tynsky Chram (Church Of Our Lady Before Tyn), Prag…

01 Sep 2007 232
The Church of Our Lady Before Tyn, or Tynsky Chram, is right on Staromestske Namesti, the old town square of Prague. Many photographers like to photograph just the belltowers, omitting the row of unrelated buildings that face the square, as the church is crammed into back streets and is itself hard to find the entrance for. It was constructed with funding from German merchants in 1385-1511, and although it was eventually taken over by Catholic Jesuits, it is just as much associated with the Hussite movement. It is also known for being the burial place of the Danish astronomer Tycho de Brahe, who died in Prague in 1601.

Hradcany and Mala Strana, Prague, CZ, 2005

01 Sep 2007 281
Here's a view of the Hradcany (castle mound) in Prague from across the River Vltava, which also gives us a look at the Mala Strana, or lesser quarter. The most notable landmarks in this photo other than Prazky Hrad and St. Vitus's Cathedral are the Church of St. Nicholas (on the far left), and if you can see it, one of the towers of the Karluv Most (Charles Bridge), just visible to the left of the Church.

St. Vitus's Cathedral, Prague, CZ, 2005

01 Sep 2007 239
The original St. Vitus's Cathedral dated to 925 AD, although it should be noted that none of the original Romanesque basilica remains. It was replaced in 1060 AD by a triple-naved basilica with twin steeples, and again by the current cathedral, which was built between 1344 and 1929. Most of it, however, was constructed by the Baroque period, making it the only known church that was started as a Gothic cathedral, but was Baroque by the time the bell tower was being completed!!! If you look carfully, you'll notice that the bell tower (with the copper dome and the clock) has an observation deck, too, which is open to the public. Surrounding the castle is a series of fortifications called Prazky Hrad, essentially Prague Castle, although the castle doesn't have, and has never had, a keep. It was meant to be symbolically unconquerable, as a castle wasn't considered conquered until the keep had fallen. In any case, I like this shot because of the storm clouds in the background contrasting with the sunlight on the cathedral in the foreground. It's dramatic to my eyes, anyway.

Bila Hora Battlefield, Bila Hora, Prague, CZ, 2007

31 Oct 2007 330
The Battle of Bila Hora (1620, a.k.a. The Battle of White Mountain) was the last battle in which the Bohemian army fought independently, as their loss in this battle also lost Bohemia its freedom from Austria, which it was not to regain until it became part of Czechoslovakia in 1919. This battle is often blamed for the hopelessness and timidity of the Czech people in the modern era, and is used as a symbol also of the futility of war. In some ways, of course, its significance is an exaggeration, but since 1620 the Bohemian Czechs have never again been known as the sort of powerful or imperial people that they were in the days of Karluv IV and the various Bohemian kings. This memorial still stands to the battle today, and the best way to get to it is to take tram 22 or 25 from the city centre, all the way to the end.

Bila Hora Memorial, Picture 2, Bila Hora, Prague,…

31 Oct 2007 222
Here's another shot of the Bila Hora memorial, with better lighting, I think.

Bila Hora Battlefield Memorial, Bila Hora, Prague,…

31 Oct 2007 222
Here's a detail of the plaque on the Bila Hora Memorial.

Portal On St. Vitus Cathedral, Prague, CZ, 2007

31 Oct 2007 232
St. Vitus Cathedral is large enough to have several portals, but this is one of the most beautiful, I think. In real life it gleams with gold leaf (or at least I think that's what it is).

Prague Castle Guards, Prazky Hrad (Prague Castle),…

31 Oct 2007 226
I had never stopped to watch the changing of the guard at Prague castle before, so I figured I should take few shots. I chose this one for uploading.

St. Vitus Framed By Trees, Picture 2, Prazky Hrad,…

31 Oct 2007 211
Here's a variation on an earlier shot from last year that I took from the Hladova Zed, only this time I took it from one of the castle gates.

St. Vitus Cathedral, Rear View, Picture 3, Prazky…

31 Oct 2007 237
I've taken a number of shots from this angle, but never uploaded any of them. This one was one of three that I took while my friend Graham was visiting and we were walking around Prague, particularly the Hradcany and Vysehrad.

Poppies, Picture 2, Bila Hora, Prague, CZ, 2007

03 Nov 2007 217
Getting into some miscellaneous stuff from Graham's visit. We visited the Bila Hora battlefield, as I illustrated earlier, and while we were there I used up a roll of film. I reloaded with Kodak Portra 160VC on the trail back to the tram stop, and the first subjects that I shot were these poppies, or at least I think that's what they are. I don't know if they were planted intentionally, but in Britain at least they symbolise war veterans, making them quite appropriate for Bila Hora. I don't know if they have the same meaning in Czech culture as in British culture, however.

View North, Picture 3, Vysehrad, Prague, CZ, 2007

03 Nov 2007 126
I took several shots from this angle while we were perched on Vysehrad taking tram pictures, and as a result I got a few nice generic views of Prague. Here's one to the north....

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