Lobkowicz Palace - History and Facts | History Hit

Lobkowicz Palace

Prague, Prague, Czech Republic

Lobkowicz Palace is a sixteenth century palace and a museum of art, history and music.

Antara Bate

24 Nov 2020
Image Credit: Shutterstock

About Lobkowicz Palace

Lobkowicz Palace (Lobkowiczky palac) is one of the museums of Prague Castle and almost certainly one of its most popular sites. It is named after the affluent and influential Lobkowicz family, to whom Lobkowicz Palace passed not long after it was built in the mid-sixteenth century.

Lobkowicz Palace history

Lobkowicz Palace was built in the second half of the 16th century by the Czech nobleman Jaroslav Pernštejn. Jaroslav’s sister-in-law, Maria Maximiliana Manrique de Lara y Mendoza brought the celebrated Infant Jesus of Prague statue from her homeland of Spain to the Palace, where it became well-known for its miraculous healing powers. The statue was later given to the Church of Our Lady Victorious in Prague, where it remains on display and attracts thousands of visitors each year. A copy of the Infant Jesus of Prague is on permanent display in the Lobkowicz Palace Museum.

The Palace came into the Lobkowicz family through the marriage of Polyxena to Zdeněk Vojtěch, 1st Prince Lobkowicz. In the centuries following that marriage, the Palace witnessed some of Bohemia’s most significant historical events. In 1618, the famous Defenestration of Prague took place when Protestant rebels threw the Catholic Imperial Ministers from the windows of the Royal Palace at Prague Castle. Surviving the fall, they took refuge in Lobkowicz Palace, where they were protected from further assault by Polyxena, 1st Princess Lobkowicz.

After World War One, and following the abolishment of hereditary titles in 1918, Maximilian Lobkowicz, son of Ferdinand Zdenko, 10th Prince Lobkowicz, demonstrated his support for the fledgling First Republic of Czechoslovakia by making several rooms at the Palace available to the government.

In 1939, the invading Nazi forces confiscated the Palace along with all other Lobkowicz family properties. The Palace was returned in 1945, only to be seized again after the Communist takeover in 1948. For the next forty years, the Palace was used for a variety of purposes, including State offices and as a museum of Czech history.

After the Velvet Revolution of 1989 and the subsequent fall of the Communist government, the Lobkowicz family once again became owners of the palace in 2002.

On April 2, 2007, after more than four years of planning, restoration and refurbishment, the Palace was opened to the public for the first time as the Lobkowicz Palace Museum, home to part of The Lobkowicz Collections.

Lobkowicz Palace today

Nowadays the palace holds one of the finest private art collections in Europe, including paintings by Canaletto, Breughel, original scores with notes by Mozart and Beethoven among other artefacts. Beyond the museum element, the architecture and history of Lobkowicz Palace and the history of the Lobkowicz family are fascinating in themselves.

The palace also has an excellent cafe and hosts frequent classical music concerts.

Getting to Lobkowicz Palace

The palace is located at the eastern end of the Prague Castle complex at the entrance by the Old Castle Steps.

The nearest metro and tram stop is Malostranská. From Malostranská tram stop walk up the narrow staircase to the Prague castle through the back entrance, the first 2 doors on the left. The nearest parking is Malostranské Square, in front of St. Nicholas Church.

Featured In

Czech Republic Historic Sites

Discover the best historic sites in the Czech Republic, from Austerlitz Battlefield to Prague Old Town Hall and the famous Astronomical Clock.