In Photos: the renovation of Prague’s Astronomical Clock

The City of Prague and photographer Martin Frouz have released thousands of photographs that depict the renovation process of the Prague landmark

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky
Published on 17.05.2019 10:55 (updated on 17.05.2019)

From early 2017 through fall of 2018, Prague’s Astronomical Clock went through an extensive renovation process that saw the local landmark out of commission across more than 18 months.

The renovation work aimed to bring Prague’s Astronomical Clock closer to its original medieval appearance.

On Wikimedia Commons, the online user-sourced repository of free-to-use photography, the City of Prague and photographer Martin Frouz have released thousands of photographs that depict the entire renovation process from late 2017 through September 28, 2018, when the renovated Astronomical Clock was unveiled to the public:

May 17, 2017: the facade of the Prague Astronomical Clock, pre-renovation

May 25, 2017: restorers being to dismantle the Clock’s lower facade

November 24, 2017: a spire at the top of Old Town Hall overlooking Prague

January 12, 2018: the base plates of the main Clock facade

March 23, 2018: a restorer works on the clock face at the top of the tower

May 17, 2018: a restorer works on one of the skeleton figures in studio

July 10, 2018: close-up detail of the Astronomical Clock’s internal mechanism

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July 10, 2018: astronomic signs prepared in studio for the Clock facade

July 18, 2018: close-up detail of the facade design

August 17, 2018: scaffolding surrounds the clock tower overlooking Old Town Square

August 23, 2018: a restorer works on the apostle figures inside the clock tower

September 20, 2018: the main facade returns to Prague’s Astronomical Clock

September 28, 2018: Prague’s restored Astronomical Clock is unveiled to the public

October 16, 2018: the Astronomical Clock’s main facade, post-restoration

All photos courtesy Wikimedia Commons, Martin Frouz/Magistrát hl. m. Prahy

The Astronomical Clock in Prague was originally built in 1410, making the 600+ year old clock one of the oldest in the world.

Renovations done on Prague’s Astronomical Clock in 2017-8 included restoring the astrolabe in the center of the clock’s face to its original design, inserting new stained glass windows, and replacing the electric drive that was installed on the Clock in the 1940s with something closer to the original mechanical system that powered up the landmark for the previous five centuries.

Overall, the 2017-18 renovation of Prague’s Astronomical Clock were the most extensive in 120 years. The total cost of renovating the Prague Astronomical Clock came in at 61 million crowns.

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