Zelena Hora (green hill)

Symbol of a legendary saint and masterpiece of an architect.
At the beginning of the 18th century an architectural style unparalleled in the rest of Europe developed in Bohemia. Known as Baroque Gothic because it involved the transposition of Gothic elements into Baroque form it was the style in which the Church of St. John of Nepomuk on Zelena hora (Green Hill) was built in the years 1719 to 1722 in Zdar nad Sazavou.
The pilgrimage church at Green Hill is a unique work of art and indisputably the most original and individual building designed by the brilliant Bohemian architect of Italian ancestry Jan Blazej Santini-Aichl in the Baroque Gothic style. It is a building that escaped the conventional architectural rules and nostrums of the time, and it impresses even the modern eye as quite exceptional, with its complex interconnecting spatial forms, the dynamism of tis volumes, and the upward lift that defies the weight of the masonry.
The foundation of the church was linked to the preparations for the beatification and canonisation of John of Nepomuk after the opening of his tomb in St. Vitus´s Cathedral in Prague and the finding of his allegedly miraculously intact tongue. Construction started in 1719 on the orders of the Abbot of the Cistercian monastery in Zdar, Vaclav Vejmluva, and the church was consecrated a mere two years later.


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