Three Windows of Prague Astronomical Clock to Remain Empty

Three statues from the Prague Astronomical Clock, which were vandalized last year, will undergo repairs by restorers. As a result, the windows will remain empty for several weeks.

The statues of Saint Philip, Thomas, and Jude Thaddeus from the Prague Astronomical Clock will be removed on Tuesday, May 30, and entrusted to restorers for two to three weeks. Last year, vandals damaged the statues by breaking the glass in the area of the Old Town Hall.

According to a press release, the restoration will take approximately two to three weeks. The clock will remain in operation during this time, but the three windows housing the damaged saints will be empty.

The vandals shattered the glass and caused damage to the statues on July 9 last year. The falling glass resulted in cuts of varying depths on the polychrome and wooden materials.

Deputy Mayor for Culture and Heritage Care, Jiří Pospíšil (TOP 09), strongly condemned the destruction of historical and cultural monuments. He expressed his complete lack of understanding of such behavior, particularly in the case of a world-renowned rarity like the Prague Astronomical Clock. Pospíšil believes that no visible damage will remain once the statues are returned to their original place. The repair, including the necessary materials, costs around 35,000 Czech korun (without VAT).

In 2018, the Prague Astronomical Clock underwent extensive reconstruction involving the Mánes Calendar. However, there was controversy surrounding the calendar restoration last year due to noticeable differences from the original. The Club For Old Prague raised concerns and even filed a complaint with the Monument Inspection.

The original calendar was painted by Josef Mánes in 1866, and a copy appeared on the Astronomical Clock of the Old Town Hall in 1882. During the significant reconstruction, academic painter Stanislav Jirčík revitalized it but added his interpretation.

In response to the controversy, the municipality decided to replace Jirčík’s work and initiated a technical and artistic analysis of the current calendar while preparing to commission a new piece. Respected restorers specializing in the works of Josef Mánes were approached for the project.