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Kinsky Palace (Palác Kinských)

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Kinsky Palace

Kinsky Palace (Czech: Palác Kinských) with its beautiful pink and white stucco fasade promotes the special image of Old Town Square. It was build for Jan Arnost Goltz in 1755-65 on the place where used to stand two hotels. Goltz had the buildings rebuilt in Rococo palace with two entrances framed with two pillars. On the first floor the pillars are connected with a balcony with a balustrade.

After the death of Count Goltz, the palace was bought by Kinsky family who stayed in the palace until 1945. The palace contained a valuable family library, now it hosts collections of the National Gallery.

There’s one thing that makes the palace very special in the Old Town Square. Notice that the palace doesn’t stand in one line with the neighbouring buildings, it protrudes a bit to the square. A legend says that the town council didn’t want to permit the special position of the palace. The count therefore bribed three councilmen, who loved money, in order to obtain the permit. Successfully. When other councilmen noticed the position of the palace, it was almost finished and therefore nobody wanted to destroy it. Nevertheless, the count was brought to trial. Because he had the permit from the three councilmen in his hand, he was released. The three councilmen, however, were hanged in front of the palace. This legend was proved wrong, the architect only followed the original position of previous buildings.

The palace is connected with the names of some important or famous people. Austrian writer, baroness Bertha von Suttner, who was as the first person awarded the Nobel Piece Prize in 1905, was born in Goltz – Kinsky Palace in 1843. The palace used to serve as a German speaking grammar school that was attended by Franz Kafka. His father had a small kiosk on the ground floor of the palace.

On 25th February 1948 Klement Gottwald, the leader of the Communist party of Czechoslovakia, address crowds of people from the balcony of Goltz – Kinsky Palace to inform them about the beginning of communist era. On the same day, but 42 years later, the President Vaclav Havel declared that the era is over forever.



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