Kutna hora Travel Guide

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Street scene

Street scene

Richard Ehrenberg

Kutna hora, an easy one hour train ride from Prague, is home to Kostnice, more commonly know as The Bone Church. The following is quoted from Frommer's:

"The Bone Church in Sedlec

A visit to Kutná Hora isn't complete without a trip to Kostnice, the "Bone Church." It's located 1.6km (1 mile) down the road in Sedlec. Those who don't want to walk can board a local bus on Masarykova Street. The fare is 8Kc (40¢/20p), and you have to have a ticket before boarding. Tickets are not sold on the bus but at newspaper stands (tabák).

From the outside, Kostnice looks like most other Gothic churches. But from the moment you enter the front door, you know that this is no ordinary church -- all of the decorations are made from human bones. No kidding. Frantisek Rint, the church's interior decorator, created crosses of bone, columns of bone, chalices of bone, and even a coat of arms in bone for the Schwarzenberg family, who owned the church.

The obvious questions are: Where did the bones come from, and why were they used for decorations? The first question is easier to answer: The bones came from victims of the 14th-century plague and the 15th-century Hussite wars; both events left thousands dead, who were buried in mass graves on the church's site. As the area developed, the bones were uncovered, and the local monks came up with this idea of how to put the bones to use.

Admission is a bargain at 30Kc ($1.45/70p) for adults and 15Kc (70¢/35p) for children. Note that taking a camera in costs an extra 30Kc ($1.45/70p), and taking a video camera costs 60Kc ($2.85/£1.45). From April to September, the Bone Church is open daily from 8am to 6pm; October 9am to noon and 1 to 5pm; November to March only by reservation at www.kostnice.cz"


Part or or all of this text stems from the original article at: http://www.frommers.com/destinations/prague/0063020751.html


December 03, 2009 change by brinty

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