"East of Prague" Sedlec by Eugenetheduck
Sedlec Travel Guide: 14 reviews and 25 photos
Just out of Kutna Hora is Sedlec and its infamous 'All Saints Cemetery Church'. The site of the church has been a place of pilgrimage since the C13th when the abbot returned from Jerusalem and scattered a handful of earth from 'the grave of the Lord'. During the plague 30,000 people were buried there and thousands more as a result of the Hussite battles around the town. The church was built at the end of the C14th. In 1511 the monks exhumed around 40,000 people and piled them into pyramids inside the church...and if you think that is macabre, you aint heard nothing yet...
When the Schwarzenbergs purchased the property in the 1870's they commissioned a wood carver to redecorate using the bones...pictures speak a thousand words...
Piece de resistance.. as you descend the stairs from the entrance you are confronted by the chandelier. The angled sides to the roof are open jaws, some still with teeth!
Cathedral of Saint Barbora (patron saint of miners)
Built over 500 years, completed in 1905. The progress depended on the prosperity of the miners, as it was largely constructed under their patronage, who wanted their own religious autonomy seperate from the Sedlec Monastery (see All Saints Cemetery Church).
The main nave was begun in 1388 and is vaulted differently to the rest of the church. The frescoes in this area also date back to the late 1300 - early 1400's and include the patron's family and the Arrival of the Queen of Saba. The painted stained glass windows(like those of St Vitus) are dated early 1900's and are stunning.
The work stopped on the cathedral for over 70 years until after the Hussite Wars, starting to build again in 1482. Construction progressed in French Renaissance style including the latest in vaulted ceilings. The frescoes on these walls depict mining and the medieval striking of coins. The statues included the miners in traditional miners clothes (white robes with leather ties that extend down the backside so that the miner could slide into the mines). All the walls, including the columns, show remnants of being painted.
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