Strahov Monastery

Photos: Vladimír Lacena (archiv OHP)

Address: Strahovské nádvoří 1/132, Praha 1
Year: 1143
Architects: Giovanni Domenico Orsi, Jean Baptiste Mathey, Jakub Schödel, Anselmo Martino Lurago, Ignác Jan Nepomuk Palliardi (authors of rebuilding)

Strahov Monastery, fully known as the Royal Canonry of Premonstratensians at Strahov, is the oldest monastery of the Premonstratensian Order in the Czech Republic and is one of the most important architectural monuments in the country. The monastery was founded in 1143 by the Duke of Bohemia, Vladislav II and his spouse Gertruda at the instigation of the bishop of Olomouc Jindřich Zdík. The church and the monastery were built out of stone in the second half of the 12th century. The Basilica of the Assumption was originally constructed as a three-nave Romanesque basilica with a transept and two square towers.

After a fire in 1258, a gothic rebuilding took place and the monastery was rebuilt several times during the following centuries. In the 17th century a substantial adjustment in Late-Renaissance style was followed by Baroque building interventions. The southern part of the convent and the abbey, new Library Hall and Abbot Garden, were created.

Across centuries this complex was owned and managed by the Premonstratensian Order. In 1950 the monastery was closed and the religious people interned in forced labor camps. The monastery was restored in 1990 and it is now the seat of the Memorial of National Literature, including the famous Library of Strahov as well as a photo gallery.