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|ČESKÁ REPUBLIKA||CZECH REPUBLIC|
|Liberecký kraj||Liberec region|
The documented history of Liberec begins with mentionings of 'Reychinberg' in church documents of the 14th century. It was the property of the Barons of Biberstein, succeded by the Hohenzollern in 1552, and the Barons Redern in 1558. The town flourished at the end of the 16th century. After the Battle at the White Mountain (Bílá Hora, today part of Prague) in 1620, the Redern were banned. The town and estates were bought by Albrecht of Wallenstein and became part of his Duchy of Friedland. Wallenstein also promoted the cloth industry which remained important for the town for centuries to come. The counter-reformation reintroduced the Catholic denomination until 1658. However, many clothiers preferred to emigrate rather than denying their Protestant faith. After the assassination of Wallenstein at Cheb (Eger) in 1634, the town passed to the Counts Gallas, and later to Clam-Gallas in 1757. At the same time, serfdom was abolished. The 18th and 19th century brought further upswings for the town and its textile industry. In 1889, the town became a city with own statutes.
The Town hall (Radnice) [left, no.291] is the centre of the municipal life of Liberec. It was built in 18881893 by the architect Franz von Neumann. The design is inspired by the flemish Renaissance as a symbol for the power of the city. The tower of the town hall has a height of 65 m which offers splendid views over the city.
Further building designed by Franz von Neumann depicted on glasses of this collection are the parish churches St. Anton and Donaufeld in Vienna and the Villa Erzherzog Eugen in Baden.
The castle [right, no.762: centre right] goes back to a castle built by Melchior von Redern in 15821587. After a fire in 1616 which destroyed the old castle, a new palace was built in Baroque style in 17731776. Later additions in Classicist style date from 18521856.
The palace chapel [near left, no.2277, and right, no.762: centre left] in High Renaissance style was built by
Katharina von Redern 16041606. As the Redern family was a supporter of the reformation in Bohemia, the church was
protestant at first. Following the defeat of the protestant Bohemian forces in the Battle at the White Mountain in 1620, the
Rederns lost all their property and the chapel became a catholic church. Since 1919 the castle is owned by the state and
served as the forest administration for North Bohemia.
The municipal theatre [left] was built in 18811883 by the famous Austrian architects
Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer in Renaissance revival style after the previous theatre, named "Tuchmachertheater" ('Clothmakers Theatre') had been destroyed by a fire in 1879.
Originally, the theatre had been planned for a capacity of 1050, but due to the fire that shortly before had destroyed the Ring Theatre in Vienna
it had to be reduced to 850 seats. The main curtain was an early work of Gustav Klimt which he carried out together with his colleague Franz Matsch. Unfortunately,
the curtain is in a very poor condition today.
Originally, the theatre had been named Reichenberger Stadttheater as it only had a German ensemble.
The theatre became famous as a starting point for the career of many later very wellknown actors and singers in the Austrian Monarchy.
As of 1923, opera guest performances also were given in Czech language by the theatre company from Olomouc.
From 1945 onward, all performances were giiven in Czech language.
The theatre was subsequently renamed Severočeské divadlo ('North Bohemian Theatre') and since 1957 is named
Divadlo Františka Xavera Šaldy after the Czech critic and writer František Xaver Šalda (18671937).
[http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/F._X._Šalda-Theater, http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/František_Xaver_Šalda, http://www.andreas-praefcke.de/carthalia/index.html]
(See also list of further buildings by Fellner and Helmer that are depicted on glasses of this collection.)
Glass no.1809 [left] shows one of the buildings of the
A popular destination for excursions in the vicinity of Liberec is the Ještěd mountain.