The second Prague defenestration took place here in the Old Royal Palace in the year 1618, when a group of angry Protestants bribed their way into the castle and threw two high Catholic officials and their secretary out of a third-story window. This bizarre incident had far-reaching consequences, since it was one of the events that triggered the dreadful Thirty Years’ War, which devastated much of central Europe and killed off two-thirds of the German population.
Amazingly, the three people who were defenestrated actually survived their fall from the third-floor window. The Catholics claimed they had survived because angels swooped down to save them. The Protestants said it was because they landed in a soft pile of horse manure.
By the way, the first Prague defenestration happened nearly two centuries earlier, in the year 1419, when seven members of the city council were thrown out of a window of the city hall. All seven were killed, either by the fall or by the angry mob that was waiting out in the street.
As long as you don’t let yourself be defenestrated you can have some fine views of Prague from the Old Royal Palace.
My photos in this post are from 2011. I revised the text in 2019.
See more posts on The Thirty Years’ War (1618-1648).
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1 thought on “Prague Castle: The Old Royal Palace”
Defenestration… now that I know what it is I’ll be on my guard lest someone tries it on me!