Discover the Neo-Gothic Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul in Vyšehrad, Prague
The ringing of bells from the collegiate church, which has undergone a variety of renovations in the 950 years since it was founded, fills the Vyšehrad region once each hour. It was finally finished in 1903, giving the Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul its current neo-Gothic form. The Basilica is located within the Vyšehrad complex. Vyšehrad is a historic stronghold in Prague that sits atop a cliff above the Vltava River. If you are heading to Prague, this underappreciated gem - the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, Prague - must make it to your itinerary.
Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, Prague
The distinctive twin steeples, which are a highlight of the Vyšehrad skyline, were built in 1903, following a neo-Gothic renovation of the basilica by architect Josef Mocker in the 1880s. The inside of the church is a colorful amalgamation of art nouveau frescoes painted by numerous Czech artists.
The Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul is among the city's most striking examples of Slavic Art Nouveau architecture. It's hard to believe that the magnificent chapel isn't the first location that people are asked to go to when they visit Prague. The expansive art nouveau murals that surround this edifice are breathtaking and a must-see for anybody visiting Prague. The visit also acts as a historical lesson on the Slavic people, Czech society, and even art.
History of the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul
The capitulary and the parish church were established by Prince Vratislav II in the 2nd half of the 11th century on the model of the Roman Church of St Peter and Paul. The church was destroyed by fire in 1249, and the original concept was lost to the ages. The first rebuilding was a modest effort aimed at restoring the structure's function rather than its appearance.
The church received a baroque frontispiece years later, but neo-gothic modifications in the 1880s destroyed all traces of this design. In 1885, a neo-gothic church was constructed as part of the new reconstruction. The construction was finally concluded in 1903. Pope John Paul II elevated the church to basilica status in 2003, underling its historic significance and honoring its antiquity.Vyšehrad History
Architectural Highlights of the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, Prague
The theme of the interior designs is history; the history of art, Christianity, and the Czech lands are all components of the decoration. Academic painters Frantiek Urban and his wife Marie painted ornamental and figural secession wall paintings for the temple's interior between 1902 and 1903. Winged women with no names border the nave's archways and fill the vault sections of the arcades. Floral designs and colorful ribbons go up the pillars and along the borders of each picture. The vibrant greens and browns that dominate the interior provide the impression of being inside a forest.
The nave's ceiling is dark green as if it were a canopy in darkness. Even the oak leaves are ornately carved into the brown wooden chairs on the ground for the viewers of church services.
Around the left side aisle, there is a well-preserved Baroque picture allegedly showing Vyšehrad in 1420. There are murals in the presbytery by Vienna painter Karl Jobst depicting scenes from the lives of St. Peter and Paul. The patrons of the church, St. Peter and Paul, and St. Cyril and Methodius, are represented on the exquisite polychrome main altar sculpted according to a design by architect Josef Mocker by woodcarver Josef Hrube between 1884 and 1889. The altar of the Bohemian benefactors in the second chapel on the left is a remarkable early-twentieth-century secession piece by woodcarver Jan Kastner.
The present structure is a neo-Gothic basilica. It was built between the years 1887 and 1903. Joseph Mocker was the first master builder, but he expired in the middle of the project. It was completed by his associate Frantisek Miks, who modified Mocker's original façade and tower designs.
A nave with two side aisles, a huge choir, sanctuary, and apse, and two side chambers with a sacristy and a shrine for Panna Maria Sancovská Our Lady of the Ramparts make up the main part of the church. The structure is fairly tall, with a cross-vaulted ceiling and pointed arched windows that bring in the sunlight through stained glass.
The original foundations of the previous Gothic church's apse were excavated a few meters east of where the church presently stands outside the cemetery walls. Three vestibules, two towers, and a crowning triangular gable between the towers make up the western façade. Jesus standing with his apostles is shown on the main gateway tympanum. Below them, the archangel Michael stands between those who are being carried to paradise by angels and those who are handicapped by sin. The basilica's namesake Saints Peter and Paul, along with angels and Jesus, are sculpted on the gable face.
Frequently Asked Questions on the Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul, Prague
A. The architectural styles implemented in the construction of the Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul founded are Gothic and Art Nouveau.
A. Yes, Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul is one of the best churches in Prague. It is known for its majestic, 58 meter twin towers and art-nouveau murals.
A. Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul at Vyšehrad is the Romanesque Basilica of Prague.
A. The Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul was founded around 1070 CE.
A. The Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul is located at Štulcova, 128 00 Praha 2-Vyšehrad, Czechia.
A. Yes, it is safe to visit the Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul in Vyšehrad after Covid-19.
A. The Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul is located in Vyšehrad, a citadel to the west of the Vltava river.
A. You can purchase online Vyšehrad tickets to visit Basilica of St. Peter & St. Paul.