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THE CHARLES BRIDGE AT KAMPA STAIRS

Lesser town - Prague 1

GPS: 50°5'12.12"N, 14°24'29.88"E

   Interesting area of the Charles Bridge is at the point where it is possible to go downstairs from its bridge deck to Kampa. Local part of the bridge gallery has been definitely dominated by the sculptural group of St Luthgard, which is sometimes called Vision of St Luthgard from 1710. It belongs among the most valuable sculptural pieces on the Charles Bridge. Its creator is an outstanding baroque master Matyáš Bernard Braun (1648-1738). Design for the sculptural group was made as a picture by Petr Brandl and Braun incarnated all that into stone. St Luthgard, a nun of Cistercian Order in Akvirik, went blind in 1235 and died eleven years later. Before her death, Christ on the cross revealed to her, embraced the suffering woman and pressed her mouth to the wound at his side. This scene is represented in the stone sculptural group. There are clouds uprising out of a simple pedestal of squared plan, formed with a bracket and there is protruding the cross with Christ’s body, to which St Luthgard, dressed in nun’s clothes, rises her head, embracing his legs with her right arm. On the right side of the cross there are exultant angels in the clouds. The original is placed in lapidary of the National Museum. The reproduction was placed there on 7th September 1995.
   A worthy companion for this sculptural group is sculpture of St Cajetan from 1709. Its author is no less outstanding baroque sculptural Ferdinand Maxmilián Brokof (1688-1731). It was created due to care of previous Theatine convent of St Cajetan in the Lesser Town.
   Nobody would certainly omit view of gable At the Virgin Mary’s Picture (U Obrázku Panny Marie) no. 514, which is situated close to the bridge. There is placed a picture of the Virgin Mary covered with a small roof. There are also flowers and in front of the picture there is a lantern with eternal light on a small balcony. On the sides of the picture there are hanging wooden rolls of hand laundry mangles. A legend tells the reason for placing them. Girl Mary carelessly gave her arm between the rolls when working. She called the Virgin Mary to help her. Then the rolls came apart spontaneously and arms of the girl were kept unharmed. It was regarded as a miracle; rolls of the mangle were disassembled and hung at the holy picture.