Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Crown of Saint Wenceslaus

The Czech coronation regalia. From Once I Was a Clever Boy:
The royal crown was dedicated to St. Wenceslas, the principal saint of the kingdom. At the request of the Emperor Charles IV this was confirmed by a bull of Pope Clement VI, which authorised excommunication for any unauthorized person handling the crown. The crown was supposed to be permanently placed on the head of St. Wenceslas and removed only for a coronation or an exceptionally solemn event in Prague or its nearest environs - and for one day only. The crown was in the care of the Metropolitan Chapter attached to St.Vitus's Cathedral.

However these prescribed strict measures were in force up to the end of the fourteenth century at the latest. The coronation jewels were then deposited in Karlštejn Castle. After the outbreak of the Hussite wars in 1419 Sigismund of Luxembourg took them to Hungary, from where they were returned to Karlštejn in 1436. For a short time before the mid-fifteenth century they were also kept at Velhartice Castle and from 1453 to 1619 they were again guarded by two Karlštejn burgraves. From 1619 to 1620 they were kept in a room of the Land Rolls. During the stormy period of the Thirty Years' War the jewels were alternately kept in a cellar in front of the chapel and in secret places outside Prague, for example, in the cellar of the parish church at Ceske Budejovice. (Read entire post.)
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1 comment:

Matterhorn said...

Beautiful crown. It's rather sad that all that has passed away.