Czernin Palace - Prague Castle District

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A Brief History of Czernin Palace

Czernin Palace is an early Baroque building located in the Prague Castle District. It is the longest Baroque palalce in Prague measuring 137 meters with 365 windows on its facade.

Czernin palace was built by Count Humprecht Jan Černín of Chudenice, one of the only Czech aristocrats who fought on the winners' side of Habsburgs during the battle of White Mountain. Victory wasn't the only thing that Czernin got after the battle: the property oh dozens of Protestant families, that were exiled by Habsburgs, went to the hands of a small group of aristcrats that Humprecht was part of. The combination of this confiscation loot and his own savings made him one of the richest man in Bohemia, who could afford to build an the biggest palalce in Prague with the view of Prague Castle and Hradcany district.

Czernin palace was started to be build in 1668 according to the plans of a legendary architect of the Pope, Lorenzo Bernini, and his pupil Francesco Caratti, whom Count Humprecht met while serving as the Emperor's abmassador in Venice. The construction was taken over by Anselmo Lurago and finished in 1692, while the gardens of the palace were designed by F. M. Kanka. 

The most permanent palace of Prague became vacant in 18th century when Czernins moved to Vienna following the king's court. Their former residents was then changed into shelter for the poor (who were separating the space in the main hall by drawing lib=nes on the floor), hospital, warehouse, storage for chops, and finally, in 1848 it became mlitary baracs. During these unfortunate years, Czrnin Palalce was not looked after until 1918 when it was occupied by the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Czernin palace was the place where Jan Masaryk died in 1948 during the Coup d'etat. The death of the first Czechoslovakian president's son is now considered to be the last defenestration in Prague, as his body was discovered below his window, something that was later labeled as suicide by the Communist Party.

Our Local Guide Tip

  • After Czernin Palace you can visit famous Prague Loreta, which is located on the same square.
  • The next stop on your walk could be a romantic Novy Svet area or the Library of the Strahov Monastery.

See more of our Prague Travel Tips.

Author: Valeriia Zahradnikova and Vaclav Zahradnik, Prague guides certified by Prague City Tourism agency. Valeriia and Vaclav have worked in tourism for over 6 years and have guided thousands of Prague visitors.