The Info List - Clementinum

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The Clementinum
(Klementinum in Czech) is a historic complex of buildings in Prague. Until recently the complex hosted the National, University and Technical libraries; the City Library
was also nearby on Mariánské Náměstí. In 2009, the Technical library and the Municipal library moved to the Prague
National Technical Library
at Technická 6.[1] It is in use as the National Library
of the Czech Republic. In 2005, the Czech National Library
received the UNESCO Jikji prize
Jikji prize
(Memory of the World).


1 History 2 Curiosities 3 Gallery 4 See also 5 References 6 External links

History[edit] See also: History of Charles University
Charles University
in Prague

View of Prague
from Clementinum

Its history dates from the existence of a chapel dedicated to Saint Clement in the 11th century. A Dominican monastery was founded in the medieval period, which was transformed in 1556 to a Jesuit
college. In 1622 the Jesuits transferred the library of Charles University
Charles University
to the Klementinum, and the college was merged with the University in 1654. The Jesuits remained until 1773, when the Klementinum was established as an observatory, library, and university by the Empress Maria Theresa of Austria. The National Library
was founded in 1781 and from 1782 the Clementinum was a legal deposit library. In 1918 the newly established Czecho-Slovak state took over the library. Since 1990, it has been the National Library. It contains a collection of Mozartiana, material pertaining to Tycho Brahe
Tycho Brahe
and Comenius, as well as historic examples of Czech literature. The architecture is a notable example of Baroque architecture and Clementinum, covering 20,000 square metres, is the second largest complex of buildings in Prague
after the Prague
Castle. For several years before 2006, there was an ongoing debate on the possibilities of expanding the space for future library collections, as space in the current Clementinum
buildings was expected to reach its limit by 2010. On Jan 10, 2006, the Prague
authorities decided to sell the city-owned property located in the area of Letná
near the Prague
center, to the National Library. In Spring 2006, an international architectural design competition for the new building was put up. An architect who won the competition is Jan Kaplický, but his winning was infirmed, so the Czech National Library
is still waiting for its final project. Curiosities[edit]

Baroque library hall

At one time the Clementinum
was known as the third largest Jesuit college in the world. The oldest weather recording in the area of the Czech lands
Czech lands
started in Clementinum
in the year 1775. The recording continues through the present day.[2] The Clementinum
is mentioned in "The Secret Miracle" by Jorge Luis Borges. The main character has a dream of the library of Clementinum where the librarians look for God
in the books of the library. One of the librarians says: God
is in one of the letters of one of the pages of one of the four hundred thousand books of Clementinum. My fathers and the fathers of my fathers have looked for this letter; I myself have gone blind looking for it. So, a reader enters and delivers an atlas for the main character, saying that this atlas is useless. The main character opens the book at random, and find a map of India, touching one of its minimum letters and, then, finds God. The Baroque library hall inside Clementinum
is known for its beautiful interior, including ceiling artwork by Jan Hiebl.


Entrance to the building from Křižovnická street.

Astronomical tower.

seen from top floor, where Slavic library is situated.

Inside the Clementinum, Old Town, Prague.

One of the courtyards.

Wall with sundials, inside the Clementinum

See also[edit]

List of early modern universities in Europe Strahov Monastery


^ The Magic of the National Technical Library
Archived 16 November 2011 at the Wayback Machine. at Prague
Real Estate ^ "Brief History of Meteorological Measurements". Czech Hydrometeorological Institute. Archived from the original on 24 April 2008. Retrieved 5 September 2010. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Clementinum

National Library
of the Czech Republic The History of Clementinum
(in English)

Coordinates: 50°05′12″N 14°24′59″E / 50.08667°N 14.41639°E / 50.08667; 14.41639

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