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Prague c1450-1650

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  • Alastair Millar
    Just found this, which I compiled for my own reference from various things translated for the permanent exhibitions of the City of Prague Museum. Very limited,
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 29, 2001
      Just found this, which I compiled for my own reference from various things
      translated for the permanent exhibitions of the City of Prague Museum. Very
      limited, no broad regional historical overviews, just some of the things
      that affected the city.... Someone out there might find it useful ;-)

      Albrecht II. Habsburg (r.1437-1439)
      * By the end of the 1430's: patrician cliques bound up with the
      conservative feudal grouping of Menhart of Hradec dominate the Prague town

      Bohemia administered by provincial assemblies (1439-1453)
      * 1448, September 3rd: George of Poděbrady takes the Prague boroughs and
      gains supremacy over the followers of Menhart of Hradec
      * c.1440: origin of the "Soběslav laws", spuriously claimed as being 12th
      century, exaggerating the privileges of the Prague patricians.
      * 1449, September 11th: three Prague boroughs pledge fealty in a compact
      with George of Poděbrady in his function as Provincial Steward.
      * 1453, April-September: suppression of opposition to George of Poděbrady
      in the Prague boroughs.

      Ladislav Posthumous (Pohrobek) (r.1453-1457)
      * 1454, November: after continual disagreements with the Praguers, the King
      moves his seat to Buda.
      * 1457, November 23rd: during wedding preparations, King Ladislav dies in

      George of Poděbrady (r.1458-1471)
      * 1458, March 2nd: hitherto Provincial Steward, George of Poděbrady is
      proclaimed King at the Old Town Hall; he is crowned in May.
      * 1459, January 19th: King George confirms the Prague boroughs in their
      possessions gained during the Hussite period.
      * 1461, May: for the first time, members of the Unitas Fratrum are
      persecuted in the Prague boroughs, and again in 1468.
      * 1462, August 10th-14th: King George renounces the chalice - the beginning
      of open war between Bohemian Utraquists and Catholics.
      * 1462, December 11th: the Emperor Frederick III confirms and extends the
      privileges conferred on the Prague boroughs by the Holy Roman Emperors.
      * 1467, April 28th: Praguers proclaim enmity with the Zelená Hora baronial
      league, coming over to King Vladislav II Jagellon.

      Vladislav II Jagellon (r.1471-1516)
      * 1472, May 12th: the new King confirms the prerogatives of the Prague
      boroughs and extends their property ownership.
      * 1477: the Emperor Frederick III reforms the arms of the Old Town and New
      Town in Prague.
      * 1483, autumn: the bourgeois opposition rises against the Catholic
      nobility and patricians - their political programme, issued exclusively in
      Prague, is a declaration in the spirit of a compact.
      * 1484, September 24th: reconciliation between the rebellious Praguers and
      the King, but until the 1485 religious conciliation granting Utraquists and
      Catholics an equal status in the land, life in the Prague boroughs is
      marked by serious religious disputes and fighting/rioting between the two
      * 1486: Praguers cease to be represented among holders of provincial
      * 1502, July 25th: 29 Royal Towns & Boroughs, among them the Prague
      boroughs, form a defensive union against the nobility.
      * 1504, October 27th: by Royal decree, the New Town is granted status equal
      to that of the Old Town.

      Reign of Ludwig Jagellon (r.1516-1526)
      * 1517, October 24th: the signing of the "St Wenceslas Treaty" marks a
      truce between the boroughs and the nobility. The political equality of the
      boroughs was confirmed, but they were required to give up some of their
      economic privileges.
      * 1518, August 30th - September 9th 1528: the "permanent union" of the Old
      Town and New Town.
      * 1524, August 9th - September 9th 1528: the result of the contest between
      Jan Pašek of Vrat and Jan Hlavsa of Liboslav for supremacy in the city is
      the autocracy of the former.

      Ferdinand I. Habsburg (r.1526-1564)
      * 1528: the King's ban on a meeting of large townships in the Prague
      boroughs without royal assent begins the curtailment of the boroughs'
      political freedom.
      * 1541: a ruinous fire damages Prague Castle, Hradčany (the Castle
      District) and Malá Strana (the Lesser Quarter).
      * 1543, July-August: the Old and New Towns oppose the King in his position
      against the neo-Utraquists, and the boroughs refuse to donate cannon to the
      war against the Turks.
      * 1547, February: the Old and New Towns participate in the unsuccessful
      revolt against the Habsburgs. In July, both boroughs capitulate, and
      between August and October their political independence and self rule is
      limited. Over the next decade, several rights and privileges - particularly
      those of an economic character - were returned. Inauspicious economic
      conjunctions in the second half of the 16th century meant that the middle
      classes did not regain their previous importance.

      Maximilian II (r.1564-1576)
      * 1576, September 2nd: the Emperor issues a verbal promise to respect the
      Czech confession, together with the declaration of a non-Catholic faith.

      Rudolph II. (r.1576-1611)
      * 1584, July 4th: a town council comprising only old-style Utraquists and
      Catholics is appointed, one of the first steps towards re-Catholicization.
      * 1609, July 9th: the "Rudolphine Charter" is issued, recognising in
      writing the Czech confession and making freedom of religion the law.
      * 1611, February: the advance of forces from Passau to Prague is the
      immediate cause of Rudolph II's abdication.

      Coming next... The Thirty Years' War! ;-)

      Matthias (r.1611-1619)
      * 1615-1617: attacks intensify against those Praguers who stood on the side
      of the Estates opposition.
      * 1618, May 23rd: the defenestration of the Royal Governors from the
      Bohemian Chancellery is the immediate cause of the Czech uprising and the
      Thirty Years' War.
      * 1618, May 24th: the Estates Congress elects a government of 30 directors;
      10 directors are from the towns, of which 8 are Praguers - 4 from the Old
      Town, 3 from the New Town and 1 from Malá Strana (the Lesser Quarter). *
      1618, May 25th: the Prague boroughs officially join the Estates Uprising.
      * 1619, June-August: town councils are filled with supporters of the
      Uprising, and the full internal autonomy of the boroughs' self-government
      is restored.
      * 1619, July 29th: The Prague New Town purchases the Borough of Vyšehrad
      Mount, confiscated from the Vyšehrad chapter.

      Frederick V, the Elector Palatine (1619-1620)
      *1620, November 8th: in the space of two hours the armies of the Estates
      are defeated and put to flight at the Hvězda park, Bílá hora (White
      Mountain), by the allied forces of Emperor Ferdinand II and the Catholic
      * 1620, November 9th: Frederick of the Palatine flees Prague in the morning
      * 1620, November 10th: the Prague boroughs capitulate unconditionally to
      the Imperial envoy plenipotentiary, Ferdinand II Maximilian of Bavaria
      *1620, November 11th-15th Prague plundered by the victorious armies, after
      which the Emperor's Regent, Charles of Lichtenstein, begin the persecution
      of the insurrectionists.

      Ferdinand II. (r.1621-1637)
      *1621, December 13th, a decree issued banishing non-Catholic priests from
      the Prague Boroughs and Bohemia, and banning the laity from the Calixtine
      *1622, May 7th, a general amnesty is announced in Prague in relation to the
      events of February 3rd the same year, granted to participants in the
      Bohemian Estates' Uprising; property confiscations and fines were not
      *1622, November 17th, the town councils of the Prague Boroughs are filled
      exclusively with Catholics.
      *1624, March 29th, an Imperial patent issued by which the Roman Catholic
      faith is made the only religion permitted in the Kingdom of Bohemia.
      *1625: Prague afflicted by a plague epidemic.
      *1627, February 5th, a special Counter-Reformational commission begins work
      in the Prague Boroughs.
      *1627, July 31st, An Imperial mandate dated this day gives non-Catholics
      until May 1628 to leave the country. The Prague Boroughs expel some 620
      Protestant families, around a twentieth of the population.
      *1628: From April, non-Catholics are not permitted to hold any office, and
      cannot claim protection under the laws of the city.
      *1628: Prague afflicted by a plague epidemic.
      *1629, October 2nd-10th: floods in the Prague Boroughs, during which the
      water reaches to the Churches of St Valentine and St Leonard in the Old
      *1631, November 11th: poverty and the threat of assault by Saxon forces
      lead to major unrest on the part of the city's poor. Rioters ransack
      several monasteries and the houses of Catholic patricians.
      *1631, November 15th: Saxon forces take Prague. During the Saxon occupation
      some 200 emigrant families return, and Protestant spiritual authority is
      *1632, May 25th: the leader of Imperial forces, Albrecht of Wallenstein,
      captures the Prague Boroughs, ending the Saxon occupation. The majority of
      Protestant families that returned during the Saxon occupation emigrate once
      *1631-1648: due to the depradations of war, these are lean years.
      *1635, May 30th, The Peace of Prague ends the war between Ferdinand II and
      the Elector of Saxony, Ferdinand III.

      Ferdinand III. (r.1637-1657)
      *1639, May 29th: after a victory at Lobkovice, Swedish forces (including
      many exiled Czechs) approach Prague
      *1639, May 30th:. The Prague garrison, prepared for defence, rejects the
      Swedish invitation to surrender
      *1639, June 2nd: the Swedes withdraw.
      *1639-1640: Prague afflicted by a plague epidemic, as a result of which
      perhaps half of the population of the Jewish ghetto die.
      *1648, July 25th; on the night of July 25th Swedish forces occupy Malá
      Strana (the Lesser Quarter) and Hradčany (the Castle District) and ransack
      them. The Swedes then unsuccessfully attack the Old Town and New Town. The
      siege is lifted in August.
      *1648, October 11th, Swedish forces launch new attacks, continuing with
      them even after the signing of the Peace of Westphalia on October 24th
      formally ends the Thirty Years' War.
      *1648, November 1st: the Swedish assault and siege end.
      *1649, April 20th, an Imperial Charter for the Old Town formally renews its
      sovereign status among the Royal Boroughs of Bohemia, and improves its
      *1649, May 3rd, the Emperor confers the same privileges on the New Town.
      *1649: Prague afflicted by a plague epidemic.
      *1649, September 30th, Swedish forces finally decamp from Prague.
      *1653, November 17th, a new order in the university is established, which
      after its merger with the Jesuit Clementine University comes to be called
      the Charles-Ferdinand University.
      *1653: a fire breaks out in Soukenické ul. in the New Town, which spreads
      to Truhlářské ul. and beyond. The greatest damage is around St Peter's at
      Na Poříčí and the parish of St Henry's. Some 120 houses burn down, and a
      further 130 suffer serius damage.
      *1655, February 15th - March 16th: some of the heaviest floods to strike
      Prague in a millennium, with floodwaters twice reaching as far as the Old
      Town Square.



      Alastair Millar, BSc(Hons)
      Consultancy and translation for the heritage industry
      e-mail: alastair@..., http://www.skriptorium.cz
      P.O.Box 685, CZ 111 21 Prague 1, Czech Republic
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