Institute of Gentlewomen - Jiřská Street 3/2, Prague Castle
Jiřská Street 3/2, Prague Castle
This extensive palace was built after the great fire of Castle in 1541 by Rožmberk family, later it was extended and rebuilt in peak Renaissance style and peak Baroque style, respectively; its today’s late Baroque appearance was gained through a reconstruction in 1753-56 according to a plan by N. Pacassi, done by A. M. Lurago, so that it could serve the purposes of the Institute of Gentlewomen. Two-storey palace with its two wings encloses two courtyards. Simple façade is dominated by a round columned portico, in the courtyards the arcades of the original Rožmberk palace were preserved. After 1919 the Institute of Gentlewomen was closed down and the building was used by the Ministry of Interior Affairs, at present time it is used by the Presidential Office and Prague Castle Administration. The Institute of Gentlewomen was an educational institution for female members of aristocratic families aged 24 and above (except for orphans who could stay there from the age of 18). The members of religious order of English virgins which were in charge of the Institute came to Prague in the first half of 18th century and stayed in the St.Joseph Convent of Carmelites in the Lesser Town, from 1755 they were based in the newly refurbished palace at the Prague Castle. Never married archduchess from Habsburg-Lorraine family acted as the head.