On our way back from Bečov nad Teplou we briefly stopped in a monastery in Kladruby to have a look around and see what’s changed there. The monastery is a magnificent cluster of buildings but when we visited the place a few years ago, for me it was quite a sad view of battered walls and facades. This time I was pleased to see great improvement, it’s obvious that a lot of work had been done and a lot of money spent to preserve these historical buildings. I’ve taken a few photos but mostly details as when you stand close to a huge building there is little chance to squeeze its size into a single photo.
The Benedictine monastery at Kladruby was established in 1115 by Prince Vladislav I. At the beginning of the 14th century the monastery belonged to the richest monasteries in the Czech Kingdom.
In the period lasting from 1712 to 1726, originally a Roman basilica was remodelled to the so called Baroque Gothic style. The remodelling was supervised by the distinguished Baroque master-builder, Johann B. Santini. The Our Lady’s basilica was consecrated in 1726, you can see the year etched above the entrance.
In 1785, Emperor Joseph II dissolved the Benedictine convent. The monastery’s property was sold by auction and the monks were dispersed.
In 1825 the monastery as well as its estates were bought at auction by Field Marshal Prince Alfréd I. Windischgrätz. The Windischgrätz family owned the Kladruby domain until 1945 when it was confiscated by the state.
I’ve never been inside and never attended a guided tour but I’d love to. You can see the inside of the basilica, library of the Windischgrätz family, exposition of the Benedictine order and much more. Another interesting piece of history, isn’t it?