Prague’s most familiar monument, connecting the city’s Old Town with the Little Quarter, was the city’s only crossing over the Vltava River till 1741. It’s 1,706ft (520 m) long and constructed of sand stone blocks. Now pedestrianized, at one time it could take 4 carriages abreast. In the present day, because of wear and tear, a lot of its statues are copies. The Gothic Old Town Bridge Tower is among the most interesting buildings of its kind.
The sculptor Matthias Braun, who was born near Innsbruck and learned his craft in Austria and Italy, came to Prague in 1710. His first work, the statue of St. Luitgard, was produced when he was solely 26. Other sculptors have been Johann Brokoff of German origin, and his sons Michael and Ferdinand. The latter produced a few of Charles Bridge’s most dynamic figures, like St Adalbert and St. Francis Xavier, whch exhibits the Jesut misstonary supported by three Moorish and two Asian co nverts.
Charles Bridge was named after Charles IV, crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 1355, who needed the bridge to echo the ancient Rome of the Caesars. Nevertheless, it was not till the late seventeenth century that statues inspired by Roman sculpture had been placed on the bridge. The statues mainly depict saints, together with St. Vitus, the bridge’s patron saint. Cherubs, dice, and a centurion’s gauntlet form a part of the statue of The Madonna and St. Bernard.