Place: Salm Palace
This exhibition is an intimate commemoration made up of works from the National Gallery in Prague for the 600th anniversary of the burning of Master Jan Hus at the stake. Jan Hus (John Huss) was not only an important figure at the turn of the 14th and 15th centuries, but he also played a significant role in his “second life”. Master Jan Hus became the symbol of all that is Czech, especially in the 19th century. Already by the middle of the century Hus had become the cultural, historical and political mirror, into which society and also artists projected both historical and contemporary ideas. In the course of the 19th century Hus became a symbol of great moral determination, strength and religious sincerity. At the same time he was considered the protector of the Czech nation and the defender of the Czech language and the historian František Palacký raised him up as one of the pinnacles of Czech national history. Karel Havlíček Borovský saw Hus as a fighter for the national cause, martyred in Konstanz in Germany. Also related to these symbols was the monument movement, which reached its climax at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. With the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic and with the support of President T. G. Masaryk he became a symbol of tradition and of official symbolism.