Passing along the Royal Coronation Way of the Czech Kings from the Old Town Square of Prague, visitors are usually astonished by the beauties of the adjoining Little Square. After seeing the rather monumental image of the central Old Town Square, the Little Square offers a refreshing tiny and yet beautiful version of an old market place just a few steps off the large one.
And indeed, the name Little derives from its size and dates back to the 17th century – the Prague inhabitants just simply named it in relation to its small proportion and loveliness, as this is one of the most cute and tiny squares in Prague. Originally a crossroad of two important ways, it was naturally formed into a shape of triangle. And it remained so through centuries, just changing the image of the houses lining this triangle till nowadays. These houses are remarkable in all senses – in architectural styles, historical background, and – names. Each house of the medieval town got a name, and the Little Square is not an exception. Just in the contrary- the names of the houses on the Little Square surpass in their poetics, harmony and imagination all surrounding parts of the Old Town. And each name has an equally interesting story behind.
To mention at least some, let´s begin with a house at Three white roses, built originally in the first half of 12th century. Three white roses – three beautiful sisters waiting for a prince to come, but cheated by the same person one after another, they all died in shame and humiliation. And there is another story for the same building: it was in this very space where the first Czech translation of bible was published in 1488. Much later, the first large Czech ironmongery store was born here, known far behind the frontiers of Prague and the Czech Republic. In the 19th century, the great Czech painter Mikoláš Aleš designed the narrative figurative decoration on its facade – the arts and crafts and rural works of the period. The last chapter of stories of this building is very contemporaneous: it houses a stylish and elegant hotel Rott. A hotel, which breathes the history from all its windows and rooms. Living history in the very sense of the two words: staying in hotel Rott will bring you just into the heart of Prague and its long history.
At Golden Lilly – is another house with a beautiful name and colourful history. Originally housing a medieval pharmacy led by certain Augustine of Firenze: the story says it was him who brought lilies into Czech gardens. And such a medieval pharmacy was also the first confectionery of its kind- as the pharmacist in the Middle Ages produced also certain sorts of sweets and bonbons, certainly sold as „medicine“.
His brother, Angelo of Firenze, came to Prague later to join him, and was not down-to-earth when choosing a name for his Pharmacy and house just next to his brother´s one: he called his house In Paradise. So if you look for an evasion from your normal everyday life, come to Prague and especially to Little Square, and you will find a real Paradise! Paradise for your eyes, for your senses, for your soul.
The author of the article and the manager of the hotel in one has many years experience with writing texts, she has been working as a free-lance journalist contributing to different Czech daily newspapers and other periodics of all kinds. She has spent a part of her career working as a city guide, and her articles are therefore providing a highly informed insight of a person, who was not only born in Prague, but who has crisscrossed the city streets countless times, has read hundreds pages of literature about Prague, and who constantly strives to contribute to the good reputation of the city from her todays workplace. Hopefully with a success…