The Republic of Czechia is a relatively small country with just over 10.6 million inhabitants. It is landlocked somewhere in the middle of Europe with Germany, Poland, Austria, and Slovakia on its borders. The country may be small but it is well known because of its involvement in the two world wars, the development of fantastic food, and amazing architectural features. In the largest city and capital of the Czech Republic, Prague, you will also find a library that is beautiful beyond words.
The National Library of the Czech Republic, known as the Clementinum, dates back to 1556. The Society of Jesus, made up of members of the Catholic Church, saw the need for an educational institution, so the library was created. According to praguego, the original complex was expanded on by the Jesuit congregation and it took over 170 years to finish the project. The library is home to more than 20,000 books and is an excellent example of beautiful Baroque architecture. It is known down to this day as being “The Most Majestic Library in the World,” after BoredPanda took a survey that included 162 entries from around the world.
There are a number of historical buildings in a large complex that also houses the Clementinum. Other buildings within the complex include the Astronomical Tower 1775, which is a weather center and a classical music venue, Mirror Chapel. In the main hall of the structure leading to the library, you will find many books, photographs, and manuscripts, all with a historical significance. You have not actually reached the library yet, but it’s a great introduction to it.
Jan Hiebl is responsible for painting the ceiling frescoes. Biblioteca Nationalis was established in 1781 by director Karel Rafael Ungar. The creation of the facility was for the purpose of holding literature in the Czech language.
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Even Google has seen the significance of what is within the walls and is working to preserve some of those rare historical book collections. Copies are being scanned and made available on Google Books.
If you are interested in visiting the Clementinium, you can walk to it from the Old Town Square or Charles Bridge. There are three entrances, found on Mariánské náměstí, Karlova Street, and, Křížovnická. Check for availability, because the Křížovnická entrance may be closed at this time.
Hours run from 10 AM every day, including weekends, but the closing times may differ, depending upon the season.
The listings for the opening and closing times are found on praguego:
January & February: 10 AM to 4:30 PM
March to October: 10 AM to 6 PM
November & December: 10 AM to 5:30 PM
The fees to enter the library are about $10 per adult, $22 for a family, and $6 for students or seniors. If you take someone under the age of seven, there is no charge for them to enter. If you happen to be carrying the Prague Card as a tourist, the admission fee is available at a 25% discount.