Charles University in Prague

5 October 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Universities, Colleges, Academies Reading Time:  7 minutes

Karolinum © VitVit/cc-by-sa-4.0

Karolinum © VitVit/cc-by-sa-4.0

Charles University (Czech: Univerzita Karlova), also known as Charles University in Prague or historically as the University of Prague , is the oldest and largest university in the Czech Republic. It is one of the oldest universities in Europe in continuous operation. Today, the university consists of 17 faculties located in Prague, Hradec Králové, and Plzeň. Charles University belongs among the top three universities in Central and Eastern Europe. It is ranked around 200–300 in the world.   read more…

Old New Synagogue in Prague

11 July 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

© Øyvind Holmstad/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Øyvind Holmstad/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Old New Synagogue (Czech: Staronová synagoga), also called the Altneuschul, situated in Josefov, Prague, is Europe’s oldest active synagogue. It is also the oldest surviving medieval synagogue of twin-nave design. Completed in 1270 in gothic style, it was one of Prague‘s first gothic buildings. A still older Prague synagogue, known as the Old Synagogue, was demolished in 1867 and replaced by the Spanish Synagogue.   read more…

Great Synagogue in Plzeň

10 June 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

© Otto Domes/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Otto Domes/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Great Synagogue (Czech: Velká Synagoga) in Plzeň (Pilsen), Czech Republic is the second largest synagogue in Europe. A Viennese architect Max Fleischer drew up the original plans for the synagogue in Gothic style with granite buttresses and twin 65-meter towers. The cornerstone was laid on 2 December 1888 and that was about as far as it got. City councillors rejected the plan in a clear case of tower envy as they felt that the grand erection would compete with the nearby Cathedral of St. Bartholomew.   read more…

Slavkov u Brna or Austerlitz in the Czech Republic

21 June 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

Slavkov u Brna © flickr.com - flightlog/cc-by-2.0

Slavkov u Brna © flickr.com – flightlog/cc-by-2.0

Slavkov u Brna (historically known in German as Austerlitz) is a town in Vyškov District in the South Moravian Region of the Czech Republic. It has about 6,900 inhabitants. The town gave its name to the Battle of Austerlitz which took place several kilometres to the west of the town. Baroque Slavkov Castle has 115 rooms and an impressive garden in the French style. The Palace was designed by Italian architect Domenico Martinelli. In its historic salon, an armistice was signed between Austria and France after the battle of Austerlitz on 2 December 1805. There is a small historic museum (only in Czech) and a multimedia presentation about the battle. On the main square is a late Renaissance town hall and mansion. Parts of the old town wall can also be seen. Church of the Resurrection of the Lord (on the south side of the main square). The classicist building with three pulpits was designed from 1786–1789 by the Viennese architect Johann Ferdinand Hetzendorf von Hohenberg. Only the synagogue (built in 1858) remains from the Jewish ghetto. There is also a Jewish cemetery a little bit outside the town. “Austerlitz” is a Jewish family name, of which the bearers are nowadays spread worldwide but which indicate and ultimate family origin in the town – Austerlitz (family). The dancer Fred Astaire was born Fred Austerlitz, and thus it could be assumed that his ancestors lived in this town.   read more…

Intermarium or Three Seas Initiative

3 February 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

Three Seas initiative summit 2018 © Administration of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria/cc-by-2.5

Three Seas initiative summit 2018 © Administration of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria/cc-by-2.5

Intermarium (Polish: Międzymorze) was a geopolitical project conceived by politicians in successor states of the former Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth in several iterations, some of which anticipated the inclusion as well of other, neighboring states. The proposed multinational polity would have extended across territories lying between the Baltic, Black and Adriatic Seas, hence the name meaning “Between-Seas”.   read more…

European Historic Thermal Towns Association

19 April 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Architecture, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  11 minutes

Gellért Baths in Budapest © Joe Mabel/cc-by-sa-3.0

Gellért Baths in Budapest © Joe Mabel/cc-by-sa-3.0

The European Route of Historic Thermal Cities is a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe. The route is supported by the European Historic Thermal Towns Association (EHTTA), founded in 2011, a nonprofit organization with currently 26 members in 11 European countries (including Turkey). In the spring of 2013 EHTTA was awarded the “Cultural Route of Europe” by the “European Institute of Cultural Routes”. The Press Office of the City of Baden-Baden calls the European Route of Historic Thermal Baths the European Bathing Route. Under the title Great Spas of Europe, some of these cities have been included in the UNESCO World Heritage.   read more…

NASA and ESA

12 August 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

NASA

© nasa.gov

© nasa.gov

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the United States government agency responsible for the civilian space program as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. President Dwight D. Eisenhower established the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1958 with a distinctly civilian (rather than military) orientation encouraging peaceful applications in space science. The National Aeronautics and Space Act was passed on July 29, 1958, disestablishing NASA’s predecessor, the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). The new agency became operational on October 1, 1958.   read more…

Mladá Boleslav northeast of Prague

9 June 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

Old Town Square with Old Town Hall and Marian column © Sokoljan/cc-by-sa-3.0

Old Town Square with Old Town Hall and Marian column © Sokoljan/cc-by-sa-3.0

Mladá Boleslav is a city in the Central Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic, on the left bank of the Jizera river about 50 kilometres (31 miles) northeast of Prague.   read more…

The Carpathians

4 April 2015 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Environment Reading Time:  7 minutes

Bear in Sinaia - Romania © Metastabil01

Bear in Sinaia – Romania © Metastabil01

The Carpathian Mountains or Carpathians are a range of mountains forming an arc roughly 1,500 km (932 mi) long across Central and Eastern Europe, making them the second-longest mountain range in Europe. They provide the habitat for the largest European populations of brown bears, wolves, chamois and lynxes, with the highest concentration in Romania, as well as over one third of all European plant species. The Carpathians and their piedmont also concentrate many thermal and mineral waters, with Romania home to over one-third of the European total.   read more…

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