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9. Wenceslas Square

This famous square has been the center of many key events in recent Czech history.  It was here that student Jan Palach burnt himself to death in 1969, and it was here in November 1989, where a protest rally against police brutality led to the events of the Velvet Revolution and the ultimate overthrow of Communism.  Calling this are a "square" is something of a misnomer for it is 825 yards long and 65 yards wide.  Originally a horse market, today it is lined with trendy Western shops, hotels, restaurants, and clubs.  The square is adorned with a huge equestrian statue in front of the National Museum, of St. Wenceslas, erected in 1912.  Cast in bronze, this remarkable sculpture is the work of Josef Myselbek, leading Czech sculptor of the 19th century.  Several other statues of Czech patron saints sit at the foot of the pedestal.  Near the statue, is a memorial commemorating the victims of the former regime.  Notable attractions near St. Wenceslas Square include the Church of Our Lady of the Snows, the Franciscan Garden, Hotel Europa, National Museum, the State Opera, and the Mucha Museum.