Many years ago i was told by a friend that if i ever want to see the Europe of outsiders’ imagination, then Prague is the city i should visit. As the capital of old Bohemia and full of Romanesque and Gothic architecture, i was assured a real fairytale-like city of castles and cathedrals and grand old buildings.
Located at the heart of Europe, Prague ('Praha') in Czech has been the capital of the ancient realm of Bohemia for centuries. Prague used to be known as the 'Five Towns' and although it has now been divided into 10 separate districts, most visitors concentrate on the five historic towns: Stare Mesto (Old Town); Mala Strana (Lesser Quarter); Nove Mesto (New Town) and the former ghetto of the Jewish Quarter or Josefov. Prague is at once one of the most beautiful and intriguing cities in Europe, justly famous for its Old Town and Castle, but beyond the crowds is another equally fascinating city of galleries, gardens and iconic design.
Prague has one of the world's most pristine and varied cityscapes, encompassing Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, neoclassical, Art Nouveau and ultra-modern buildings. The centre of Prague is essentially a Gothic city with a Baroque face. Nearly all of its numerous churches were either built or remodelled during the Baroque period and many of the original Gothic houses were given a new Baroque facade in the frenetic period of building and reconstruction initiated in the 17th century. And if the centre has a Baroque appearance, visitors who venture slightly further out might be surprised to find that Prague has some of the best examples of early 20th-century Modernist architecture of any European city.
浪漫这个词, 我们都不陌生. 每个人都对浪漫有不同的定义, 但无论怎么去定义, 浪漫给人的感觉总是舒服的. 比起欧洲其他地方, 东中欧给人一种贫穷, 落后的感觉. 但这片土地特有的气息和色彩, 是其他地方无法比拟的. 捷克是波西米亚的发源地, 这里, 从来不会缺少色彩两个字. 而浪漫, 也可以是一种颜色. 布拉格的色彩, 是什么样的呢? 相机记录了我想说的一切. 浪漫之地, 有的时候是不需要用语言诠释的. 布拉格是捷克的首都, 是这个国家经济, 文化和政治中心, 同时这里也是欧洲最美丽的城市之一. 其实对浪漫的定义, 美, 也是非常重要的因素.
这篇文章我将分为 "布拉格旧城广场" 及 "天文钟" 两个部分来跟大家分享. 在开始我的布拉格之旅前, 我先来正名一下. 一路上看到 Pragu, 以发音上来看, 一直以为这就是布拉格的原名. 但又不断在地图看到 Praha 与 Praga 等, 且这些地名在地图上的位置, 似乎又应该就是布拉格. 这一路上的疑问, 终于在抵达布拉格市区后给了个解答. 原来 Praha, Pragu, Praga 与 Prag 指的都是布拉格, 其间只不过是因为语言上的不同而有相左.
Prague stands out as one of the few cities in Europe that emerged with its medieval old town almost entirely intact. As you wander its cobblestoned streets and look to the castle lit up at night, it can sometimes feel like you have been inserted into a fairy tale.
Prague’s Old Town Square is one of the oldest places in Europe and dates back over 700 years. Not only are you taken on a journey of historical discovery just by walking through the square, but the view that surrounds you is something to be savoured and cherished. With its magnificent churches, stunning cathedrals and beautiful architecture all around, it’s hard not to feel humbled here. The Old Town started out life as the city’s central marketplace back in the 12th century, and even since it has been the focal point of tradition in Prague.
Entering Old Town Square, you can find the Old Town Hall. Originally founded in the 13th century, the building was composed of a collection of medieval buildings, purchased one by one over the years with the proceeds of the city's tax on wine.
Some of Prague's colourful history is preserved around the Old Town Square in the form of its buildings. An array of pastel-coloured buildings completes the Square.
布拉格是捷克的首都, 有百塔之城, 金色城市之称, 分为旧城区, 新城区, 小区, 高城和城堡区, 每一区都有它的特色, 建筑也美的令人叹为观止, 也让我深深感受到欧洲中世纪建筑的大器, 看到这样壮观的建筑, 一时间还不知怎么取景呢.
走着走着来到了旧城广场, 旧城广场中间有个胡斯纪念碑, 是为了纪念胡斯逝世五百周年所建的, 胡斯可以说是捷克的民族英雄.
马车后面的是圣尼古拉教堂, 也是在旧城广场旁边. 圣尼古拉教堂属于巴洛克式建筑, 白色的墙身和洋葱式的顶端, 看起来还挺像城堡的说. 马车加上城堡整个超童话.
Free of traffic (except for a few horse-drawn carriages) and ringed with historic buildings, Prague's Old Town Square ranks among the finest public spaces in any city. Cafe tables spill out onto the cobbles and though the area draws tourists by the thousands, the unique atmosphere has not been destroyed.
The big feature that can strike one's attention as you are in the Old Town Square is the Astronomical Clock (Orloj), which dates from 1410 although it was transferred into the contraption you see today by one Master Hanus in 1490. According to legend, he was blinded after completing his work, so that he could not replicate it anywhere else.
The performance of the upper part of the clock draw hordes of tourists at the striking of the hour from 8am to 8pm. Death rings the death knell and turns an hourglass upside down. The 12 Apostles proceed along the little windows that open before the chimes and a cockerel flap its wings and crows. The hour strikes. To the right of death, a Turk wags his head. The two figures on the left are allegories of Greed and Vanity.
大圆圈是代表 1 天 24 小时的时间, 小圆圈是代表太阳落在哪一个星座. 每到整点, 十二门徒从钟塔上方的窗户现身, 钟楼上的活动木偶开始动作, 吸引了不少人观看. 但听说天文钟的背后有个凄凉的故事, 建造天文钟的人, 在他建好钟后, 即被国王下令弄瞎眼睛, 为避免他再为别人建这样的天文钟.
天文钟是一种特别设计的, 能用多种形式来表达天体时空运行的仪器. 它是把动力机械和许多传动机械组合在一个整体里, 利用几组齿轮系把机轮的运动变慢, 使它经常保持一个恒定的速度和天体运动一致. 天文钟既能表示天象, 又能计时. 它可以显示太阳, 月亮, 星座在该时刻的相对位置, 有的更可显示主要行星的位置.
The face of the clock underneath preserves the medieval view of the course of the sun and moon through the zodiac, with Prague and the earth located at the centre of the universe. Beneath that is the calendar, with signs of the zodiac and scenes from country life, symbolising the 12 months of the year. The calendar is a replica of the work executed by a Czech painter Josef Manes in 1866 and now in the Prague City Museum.
布拉格天文钟由三个最主要的部分构成: "天文表盘”, “耶酥和十二门徒” 以及 “日历钟盘”.
捷克布拉格的旧市政厅天文钟是最著名的天文钟之一, 钟的核心部分完成于1410年, 钟盘上画着代表地球和天空的背景, 并且有四个主要的移动的圆盘, 分别是黄道十二宫圆盘, 老捷克时间表, 太阳和月亮. 虽然时间已经过去了 600 年, 但是它的机械小宇宙依然在正常地运行, 并百年如一日地为人们精确报时.
四个人像雕像位于钟的侧面, 每个小时都处于运转之中. 表盘的蓝色圆环上用金质罗马数字标识着时间的刻度, 按通常的一天 24 小时划分, 为布拉格时间. 钟盘上的金质曲线将蓝色划分为 12 个部分, 标识出从太阳升起到落下之间的每一个时段以及一年中长的或短的每一天.
来到这个广场会发现, 不管何时这儿总是聚集了来自各地的游客. 旁边的露天咖啡厅, 也时常高朋满座.
This dramatic white Baroque St. Nicholas's Church owes its unusual proportions to the fact that it was originally hemmed in by houses which stood in front, completely separating it from the square.
The St Nicholas Church is now a popular concert venue. In the nave is a huge crown-shaped chandelier.
Many of the buildings in the Old Town Square area have been impressively restored.
Staying in this district of Prague is the choice for those seeking more authenticity and history, holiday apartments are in every corner of the Old Town, usually in building with a great architectural style. Hotels are mostly around the main Square and each hotel tells stories from the history of Prague.
Prague's pastel buildings and classical music street performances really made me feel like i was walking in a fairytale.
Prague is a city best experienced slowly, at ground level.
If you notice locals popping into small alleys or streets, follow them. The city is full of shortcuts through buildings and side streets. Take them, maybe get lost, and perhaps you’ll find something hidden or at least something outside of your guidebook.
正午的阳光十分耀眼, 通向城堡区的小路是一条条蜿蜒曲折的石头路. 途中, 有各式各样的店铺, 在这里似乎能够找到一切.
The narrow streets near Charles Bridge follow Prague's medieval street plan. For centuries Charles Street (Karlova) was the main route across the Old Town. The picturesque, twisting street is lined with shops and houses displaying Renaissance and Baroque facades.
I always see somthing different each time i pass through Old Town. Its beauty is wrapped in surpising details and incredible ambience. All the little streets seem to empty into this awesome sight.
The Storch House has painted decoration based on designs showing St Wenceslas on horseback.
Fisherman emblem on a house in the Old Town.
The Church of Our Lady Before Tyn looms over Old Town Square with gothic fairytale spires and beautiful vaulted ceilings inside. You have to find the hidden entrance to the left. The inside is only accessible by attending church service but you can still peek in during other times.
Built in the 13th century, the Tyn Church is famous for its iconic towers. One of them is actually shorter and thinner than the other, which has led to their being nicknamed Adam and Eve.
Come and join the thousands of tourists every day that visit the Gothic, Baroque and Romanesque buildings that house cafes and restaurants and the perfect places to sit and watch the world go by. Prague is a town of diversity and a lot of charm, each district has its own character and appeals for a different kind of tourists. Few cities have as much to offer as Prague, so it can be challenging to decide how best to spend your time. The Old Town is a joy in itself and you could amble around here admiring its old houses for days. Yet, with some planning, you can see much more of what makes this historic city special.
With a heavily circled and annotated map in hand, and my camera over my shoulder, i pounded the stone mosaic pavements of Prague in 10-degree temperatures, visiting all the key sights and stopping for plenty of thirst-quenching local brews along the way. As i set off towards the Old Town Square, i couldn’t help but smile at the towering twin spires of the Tyn Church, which reputedly inspired Walt Disney’s Sleeping Beauty castle. It doesn’t get much more fairytale than that!
捷克首都布拉格天文钟, 也称为 “布拉格占星时钟”, 布拉格城老城广场的城市政厅的南面墙上, 这座中世纪天文钟十分精美别致, 至今走时准确. 整个钟充满这神秘和精美的花纹, 去捷克旅游的童鞋, 不要错过哦.
Captivating Prague In Czech Republic 捷克布拉格古美浪漫之旅 - To be continued.....
A freelance Singapore-based travel photographer / photojournalist. I seek the extraordinary, but finds beauty in the everyday. Life is interesting, capture it.
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