3- Diatom, Magdalena Parlinska, University of Rzeszow, Poland Rotaviruses, Electronmicroscopy, Elisabeth M. Schraner, Institutes of Vet. Anatomy and Virology, Switzerland 4- Gel beads coated with a RuC13 coatings, Magdalena Parlinska, University of Rzeszow, Poland
Collagen fibers in cartilage, E. I. Romijn, NTNU, Trondheim Butterfly Wings, Benedykt R. Jany, Marian SmoluchowskiInstitute of Physics - Jagiellonian University, Poland Offretite Scagno, TESCAN
Orchid root showing with idioblastic cells, S. R. Senthilkumar, St. Joseph´s College, India 2- Diatom, Magdalena Parlinska, University of Rzeszow, Poland Powder metallurgy substrate, TESCAN
Salt, TESCANProcapsid and nucleocapsid of dsRNA bacteriophage phi6, D. Nemecek, CryoEM Research Group CEITEC, Czech Republic 1- Gel beads coated with a RuC13 coatings, Magdalena Parlinska, University of Rzeszow, Poland
PbI2 Crystallization, TESCAN2- CVD grown diamond film, Magdalena Parlinska, University of Rzeszow, Poland Chroococcus giganteus - Jan Stastny, Charles University, Věda je krásná
Uniform core shell Fe nanoparticles, S. Bandyopadhyay, NTNU, Trondheim Coral, TESCANScabiosa columbaria - Viktor Sykora, Charles University, Věda je krásná
Polymer fibers, TESCANPaulinella chromatophora - Yvonne Nemcova, Charles University, Věda je krásnáEudorina - Pavel Skaloud, Charles University, Věda je krásná

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Prague, which extends over a number of hills on both sides of the river Vltava, is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, thanks to its natural location and to more than a thousand years of architectural development. This would be the reason why Prague is called "the city of a hundred spires". At present, there are around 500 towers in the city. Not only does it have a long architectural tradition, but also a rich artistic, musical and literary history. Over the centuries it has served as an important commercial crossroads and as a meeting place for scientists and artists from around the world. Perhaps that could be the reason why the city is also called "Golden Prague". It was believed that during the reign of Rudolf II alchemists were invited to Prague who were able to turn ordinary metals into gold.

Prague is a city of mystery and romance as well as a city full of atmosphere. One does not have to believe in spells and magic to be enchanted by the seductive atmosphere of the Old Town (Staré Město) and the Lesser Town (Malá Strana). Especially in the evening dusk the winding streets of booth districts can appear charged with energy.



HISTORY

A glory that will reach up to the stars´ is how the mythical Princess Libuše saw the future of Prague according to the old Czech legend. It was Libuše who determined the site where the future city would be built. However, the real history of the city is closely connected to Prague Castle, founded in 870, which became the seat of Czech rulers for centuries. Prague experienced great expansion in the early 14th century when Czech King and Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV made it his Imperial capital.

Another important period for the city came in the late 16th century. During the reign of the Czech ruler and the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolph II of the Habsburg family, the Czech capital became an epicentre of political, social and cultural life in central Europe. In 1918, at the end of World War I, Prague was declared the capital of a new country - the Czechoslovak Republic. In 1993, it became the capital of independent Czech Republic.


ARCHITECTURE

Over the years, Prague has grown and changed gradually and organically. At the same time, each has left its distinctive mark on the streets of Prague. The historical centre is a colourful gallery of all types of architectural styles that range from Gothic to Art Nouveau and Modernism. A walk through Prague is like a walk through a textbook on European architecture. Since 1992, it has been listed by UNESCO as a world cultural heritage site.




THE PRAGUE CASTLE,
AN ANCIENT SYMBOL OF CZECH LANDS

It is a national cultural monument as well as a symbol of more than millennial development of the Czech state. It lies on a raised hill on the left bank of the Vltava river and its characteristic silhouette of the pointed towers of Saint Vitus´s cathedral is a dominant feature of  Prague´s panorama. Since its foundation in the last quarter of the 9th century, it has been developing uninterruptedly throughout the past eleven centuries. It is a monumental complex of ecclesiastical, fortification, residential and office buildings representing all architectural styles and periods, surrounding three castle courtyards and covering over 45 hectares. Originally it used to be the residence of princes and kings of Bohemia and since 1918 it has been the seat of the President.


THE JEWISH TOWN

Prague´s Jewish Town boasts an ancient cemetery containing several thousand Rennaisance and Baroque tombstones and is one of the most valuable Jewish historical monuments in the world. The local Gothic Old-New Synagogue, the oldest surving synagogue to be found in Europe, continues to serve as a house of prayer for Prague´s Jewish community still to this day.




CHARLES BRIDGE

It is the oldest Prague bridge built in place of Judita´s Bridge which had been badly damaged by a flood in 1342. The Stone or Prague Bridge, since 1870 called Charles Bridge, was founded by Charles IV in the year 1357. According to the latest research the construction was started by Master Otto and finished by Peter Parler in 1402. Both ends of the bridge are fortified by towers (the Lesser Town Bridge Tower, the Old Town Bridge Tower). From 1683 to 1928, thirty sculptures and sculptural groups of saints were gradually set on the bridge piers (M. Braun, F. M. Brokof, etc.) The bridge is 515 meters long and 10 meters wide.



THE OLD TOWN SQUARE

The Old Town Square, the historical centre of Prague, boasts a Gothic Town Hall featuring a tower with mechanical astronomical clock showing not only the time, but also the lunar cycle and the position of the planets. On the stroke of every hour the individual statuettes which adorn the clock are set in motion and a procession of twelve apostles can be seen moving in the tower windows. Besides the astronomical clock, one may be impressed by the baroque St. Nicholas Church (K. I. Dienzenhofer), the rococo Kinsky Palace, the gothic Stone Bell House or the Memorial to Master Jan Hus.

Although the citizens of Prague are very proud of their city´s history, Prague by no means lives only on its famous past. It is a modern European metropolis with all that entails a typical modern city. It offers a wide selection of cultural and sporting activities with clubs for young people as well as bustling commercial avenues and modern administrative centres. It is here that the past and the present merge into a unique symbiosis.
 

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