House at the Golden Ring

The early history of the House at the Golden Ring is connected with the immediate vicinity of the Tyn Court. In the Middle Ages, the latter was a fortified sanctuary for merchants who came to Prague to trade their goods. Under the protection of Bohemian princes and later kings, the merchants were accommodated there and their goods were stored, cleared through customs, and sold. There used to be a defence moat as part of the fortification on the site of today’s House at the Golden Ring. In the 13th century, the moat was backfilled and replaced with a wall whose remains with embrasures have survived in the house interior.
The house’s current configuration came in the second half of the 15th century when two older buildings were joined together. Their earliest building stage is evidenced by two Early Gothic cellars dating from the second third of the 13th century; the next adjustments of the houses continued during the 14th century. The first written notice about the house comes from 1402; in 1429, it is first mentioned as the House at the Golden Ring (ad aureum anulum).

Tomášek of Klobouky and his son Wenceslas from the Ring are the earliest known owners of the house. They held the important office of vineyard regent between 1448 and 1477, having been in charge of all the vineyards around Prague. Jan Chocenský of Choceň, the rector of the Prague university, renowned physician, and publisher of medical literature, who bought the house around 1540, is another owner who is worth mentioning.
Fragments of Late Gothic murals have survived on the first floor of the house as well as the 16th century Renaissance painted ceiling. The house went through significant reconstruction around 1609, including an additional floor. The late Renaissance oval fanlight window above the entrance portal, rib vaults, and spiral staircase in the entrance hall come from that epoch. Later, the interiors underwent partial refurbishment; in the 19th century, the courtyard balconies and outer facades were reconstructed in the Classicist style and the house sign – relief of the 17th century ring – was replaced with a replica.
Between 1990 and 2016, the house was administered by the Prague City Gallery which reconstructed the house under the supervision of architect Vlado Milunić. Among other things, wooden ceilings and mural paintings were restored.

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