Saints on the bridge
The statues of the 30 saints that line both sides of the bridge were placed here in the 17th and 18th centuries. The oldest statue represents the crucifixion of Christ and dates back to 1667. The statues were donated by the judges and noblemen who were involved in the Counter Reformation, a reform movement within the Roman Catholic Church. Prague was the centre of this movement. The sculptures were added to the bridge to make it resemble the St. Angelo Bridge in Rome. Today all the sculptures have been replaced by replicas.
The bridge tower at the Charles Bridge
The fast current of the Vltava River was an important factor in the design of the bridge. This resulted in the use of sandstone as this building material does not erode in the fast current. The pillars of the bridge were streamlined to allow the water flow to pass unimpeded. It is said that the cement was enriched with eggs to make it sturdier. However, tests have proven inconclusive so the mystery remains. The Charles Bridge is well worth a visit, and do also make time to see the bridge tower on the south side of the bridge - it is among one of the most beautiful Gothic structures in the world.
Art on the Charles Bridge
All the luck in the world
To the pleasure of the many tourists who flock here, the bridge is only accessible to pedestrians. It is always busy: artists sell their paintings and drawings, street performers entertain the crowds and in the evening this is a popular meeting place for young people. Watch the crowds gather around the statue of John of Nepomuk - according to local legend, you will receive all the luck in the world if you simultaneously touch the statue’s 2 copper plates.