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Statue of Charles IV. near the Charles Bridge

Statue of Charles IV., the Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia, is situated at the Knights of the Cross Square near the Charles Bridge. It is one of the most important neo-Gothic statues in Central Europe.

Emperor Charles IV.

Charles IV., often called Pater patriae (father of the country), was an important personality of the medieval Europe. He made Prague the capital of the Holy Roman Empire and he had many buildings built in the city. He also founded the oldest university in Central Europe – the Charles University – in 1348. Many places and buildings in Prague and in the whole country bear his name: the Charles Bridge, the Charles Square, and others. His monument was made on the occasion of 500 th anniversary of the Charles University in 1848.

Monument in front of the Charles Bridge

The bronze Charles IV. Monument was designed by Arnost J. Hähnel. The statue itself is about 4 metres high and it stands on a pedestal of the same height. Charles IV. has a sword in one hand and a foundation charter of the university in the other hand.

The pedestal is adorned with allegories of four faculties: faculty of theology, medicine, law and philosophy. There are statues of four important personalities of Charles IV.´s era at the corners of the monument: Arnost of Pardubice (the first Prague archbishop), Jan Ocko of Vlasim (the successive Prague archbishop), Benes of Kolovraty (he accompanied Charles IV. on his way to Rome for coronation) and Matthias of Arras (the first builder of the St. Vitus Cathedral at the Prague Castle).

The Charles IV. Monument was revealed in 1849, because there were fights around it in 1848 and the statue had to be encased to be protected from damage.

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