Page:Lutzow The Old Town Hall of Prague.pdf/6

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and successfully defended the religious and political liberty of the country, not unfairly claimed the leadership.«

During the whole period of the Hussite wars Prague is always the centre of the events. The great tragedy begins there with the troubles that broke out after the death of King Venceslas, and civil dissensions between the new town and the more conservative old town immediately precede the decisive and final battle of Lipany. It would be interesting—did time permit—to allude to the many historical events, such as the arrestation of the priest John of Želivo, which took place in the townhall at this time.

The stormy period of the Hussite wars was naturally unfavorable to the erection of new buildings; and though the town hall must long have become too small, it was only after the reestablishment of peace that the council-house was rebuilt and considerably enlarged by the inclusion of an adjoining house which had been lift to the town by the widow of one of the citizens. At this time also the tower adjoining the ancient chapel was built and the famed clock placed on it.

Though the acceptation of the compacts which shortly followed the battle of Lipany secured at least a temporary agreement between the Romanists and the Hussites of Bohemia, the whole period of Bohemian history which begins with the Hussite wars and ends with the battle of the WHITE MOUNTAIN in 1620 is a very stormy one. The kings of Bohemia were very often absent from the country and the chroni