|St. Salvator Church (Kostel sv. Salvátora) forms part of the Klementinum, the largest and most historic complex of buildings in the Old Town in Prague.|
The church is a city landmark. It is located at one end of Charles Bridge, marking the entrance to the Old Town.
St. Salvator is considered to be one of the most valuable examples of early-Baroque architecture in Prague. It was originally built by the Jesuits in the Gothic style between 1578-1601, but significant Baroque features were added between 1649-1654.
The celebrated architects Carlo Lurago, Francesco Caratti and Frantisek Kanka were in charge of construction.
The church has a beautiful facade. Its portico is decorated with sand-stone sculptures of saints created by Jan Jirí Bendl.
A niche in the wall houses a sculpture of the Virgin Mary.
The interior of the church is deceptively large, much grander than one imagines from outside. There are three aisles with galleries, and the very high central aisle leads to a stunning dome painted with frescos.
St. Salvator Church boasts not one, but two magnificent organs. Both are played at Mass and during classical music concerts.
The holy building conceals a paradox which characterises the work of the Jesuit Order in Bohemia: in the crypt are buried both Father Koniáš, the “destroyer of Czech books”, and Bohuslav Balbín, who is known as the “defender of the Czech language”.
In winter, the seats at St. Salvator are heated and have cushions, but it is still advisable to wear warm clothing for concerts.
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To explore the sights in Prague, take a Prague tour.