|There is a plaque fixed to a statue on Charles Bridge, depicting a man being thrown off the bridge. What is the story behind the plaque and why do people touch it?|
The statue represents Saint John of Nepomuk, the court priest of King Wenceslas IV. Legend has it that he was killed by request of the king, because he refused to tell the king about the queen's confession (what was the queen's confession you ask? Well, we don't wish to suffer the same fate as Saint John!).
Actually, the truth is that he invited a bishop to Prague who was the king's enemy.
Touching the statue is a Prague ritual. It is supposed to bring good luck and to ensure that you return to Prague soon.
Walk a few steps towards the Old Town from the statue and you will come to a cross with five stars on the left parapet of the bridge. This is the exact point where the priest was thrown in the water in the year 1383. Legend has it that stars appeared when he touched the water. Here you are supposed to touch the cross and the stars with your left hand and make a wish. Whatever your wish, it will come true!