Bethlehem Chapel is historically one of the most important buildings of medieval Prague and it is connected inevitably with the religious reforms and the name Jan Hus.
The chapel was build for 3000 people who came there to pray. The preaches were in Czech languages. One of the most famous preachers of Bethlehem Chapel was Jan Hus, the rector of Charles University, who was influenced by English religious reformer John Wycliffe. Jan Hus condemned the corrupt practises of the Church. Thanks to him the chapel was very popular and became the birthplace of the reform movement. After 1620 the Bethlehem chapel was taken over by the Jesuits. Bethlehem chapel was reconstructed and in 1786 almost demolished. An apartment house was built on the site.
What you see today a faithful reconstruction of the chapel from 1950-52 following old drawings. There are remains of the original walling from 14th century in three walls. The walls are decorated with paintings copied from old prints and with fragments of original signs from the 15th century. Light comes through five windows with pointed arches.
And why is it called Bethlehem Chapel? The chapel was consecrated on the day commemorating the murder of the children of Bethlehem. Now Bethlehem Chapel is the Czech national cultural heritage. You can find there guidebooks in many languages.
Betlemske namesti 4, Prague Old Town
How to get there:
Take tram 17 or 18, get off at Karlovy Lazne and walk along Naprstkova street until Betlemske namesti. Or from Narodni trida (metro yellow line B) walk along Spalena street to Na Perstyne street. Then take second street to the left to Betlemske namesti.