Česká republika (Czech)
and largest city
|Officially recognised languages|
|Ethnic groups (2011)|
|Chamber of Deputies|
• part of the Czechoslovak Republic (Czech lands, Czech regions)
|28 October 1918|
|1 January 1969|
• Czech Republic
|6 March 1990|
• Czech Republic became independent
|1 January 1993|
|1 May 2004|
|78,866 km2 (30,450 sq mi) (116th)|
• Water (%)
• 2015 estimate
|10,553,948  (84th)|
• 2011 census
|134/km2 (347.1/sq mi) (87th)|
|GDP (PPP)||2017 estimate|
|$368.659 billion (50th)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2017 estimate|
|$196.068 billion (49th)|
• Per capita
|Gini (2015)|| 25.0
low · 5th
|HDI (2015)|| 0.878
very high · 28th
|Currency||Czech koruna (CZK)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
• Summer (DST)
|Drives on the||right|
|Patron saint||St. Wenceslaus|
|ISO 3166 code||CZ|
The Czech Republic (/ / ( listen) CHEK-rə-PUB-lik; Czech: Česká republika, Czech pronunciation: [ˈt͡ʃɛskaː ˈrɛpuˌblɪka] ( listen)), also known as Czechia (// ( listen), CHEK-ee-ə; Czech: Česko, pronounced [ˈt͡ʃɛsko]), is a nation state in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west, Austria to the south, Slovakia to the east and Poland to the northeast. The Czech Republic covers an area of 78,866 square kilometres (30,450 sq mi) with a mostly temperate continental climate and oceanic climate. It is a unitary parliamentary republic, has 10.5 million inhabitants and the capital and largest city is Prague, with over 1.2 million residents. The Czech Republic includes the historical territories of Bohemia, Moravia, and Czech Silesia.
The Czech state was formed in the late 9th century as the Duchy of Bohemia under the Great Moravian Empire. After the fall of the Empire in 907, the centre of power transferred from Moravia to Bohemia under the Přemyslid dynasty. In 1002, the duchy was formally recognized as part of the Holy Roman Empire, becoming the Kingdom of Bohemia in 1198 and reaching its greatest territorial extent in the 14th century. Besides Bohemia itself, the king of Bohemia ruled the lands of the Bohemian Crown, he had a vote in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor, and Prague was the imperial seat in periods between the 14th and 17th century. In the Hussite wars of the 15th century driven by the Protestant Bohemian Reformation, the kingdom faced economic embargoes and defeated five consecutive crusades proclaimed by the leaders of the Roman Catholic Church.
Following the Battle of Mohács in 1526, the whole Crown of Bohemia was gradually integrated into the Habsburg Monarchy alongside the Archduchy of Austria and the Kingdom of Hungary. The Protestant Bohemian Revolt (1618–20) against the Catholic Habsburgs led to the Thirty Years' War. After the Battle of the White Mountain, the Habsburgs consolidated their rule, eradicated Protestantism and reimposed Roman Catholicism, and also adopted a policy of gradual Germanization. With the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the Bohemian Kingdom became part of the Austrian Empire and the Czech language experienced a revival as a consequence of widespread romantic nationalism. In the 19th century, the Czech lands became the industrial powerhouse of the monarchy and were subsequently the core of the Republic of Czechoslovakia, which was formed in 1918 following the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after World War I.
Czechoslovakia remained the only democracy in this part of Europe in the interwar period. However, the Czech part of Czechoslovakia was occupied by Germany in World War II, and was liberated in 1945 by the armies of the Soviet Union and the United States. The Czech country lost the majority of its German-speaking inhabitants after they were expelled following the war. The Communist Party of Czechoslovakia won the 1946 elections. Following the 1948 coup d'état, Czechoslovakia became a one-party communist state under Soviet influence. In 1968, increasing dissatisfaction with the regime culminated in a reform movement known as the Prague Spring, which ended in a Soviet-led invasion.
The first separate Czech republic was created on 1 January 1969, under the name Czech Socialist Republic within federalization of Czechoslovakia, however the federalization was implemented only incompletely. Czechoslovakia remained occupied until the 1989 Velvet Revolution, when the communist regime collapsed and a democracy and federalization was deepened. On 6 March 1990, the Czech Socialist Republic was renamed to the Czech Republic. On 1 January 1993, Czechoslovakia peacefully dissolved, with its constituent states becoming the independent states of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic.
The Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the European Union (EU) in 2004; it is a member of the United Nations, the OECD, the OSCE, and the Council of Europe. It is a developed country with an advanced, high income economy and high living standards. The UNDP ranks the country 14th in inequality-adjusted human development. The Czech Republic also ranks as the 6th most peaceful country, while achieving strong performance in democratic governance. It has the lowest unemployment rate of EU members.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Geography
- 4 Government and politics
- 5 Economy
- 6 Demographics
- 7 Culture
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 Further reading
- 11 External links
The traditional English name "Bohemia" derives from Latin "Boiohaemum", which means "home of the Boii". The current name comes from the endonym Čech, spelled "Cžech" until the orthographic reform in 1842.[not in citation given] The name comes from the Slavic tribe (Czechs, Czech: Češi, Čechové) and, according to legend, their leader Čech, who brought them to Bohemia, to settle on Říp Mountain. The etymology of the word Čech can be traced back to the Proto-Slavic root *čel-, meaning "member of the people; kinsman", thus making it cognate to the Czech word člověk (a person).
The country has been traditionally divided into three lands, namely Bohemia (Čechy) in the west, Moravia (Morava) in the southeast, and Czech Silesia (Slezsko; the smaller, south-eastern part of historical Silesia, most of which is located within modern Poland) in the northeast. Known as the lands of the Bohemian Crown since the 14th century, a number of other names for the country have been used, including Czech/Bohemian lands, Bohemian Crown, and the lands of the Crown of Saint Wenceslas. When the country regained its independence after the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian empire in 1918, the new name of Czechoslovakia was coined to reflect the union of the Czech and Slovak nations within the one country.
Following the dissolution of Czechoslovakia at the end of 1992, the Czech part of the former nation found itself without a common single-word geographical name in English. The name Czechia // was recommended by the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs (minister Josef Zieleniec). In a memorandum to all Czech embassies and diplomatic missions in 1993, the full name "Czech Republic" was recommended for use only in official documents and titles of official institutions. The geographical name still has not reached general recognition, but its usage is increasing. Czech president Miloš Zeman uses the name Czechia in his official speeches. Czechia was approved by the Czech government on 2 May 2016 as the Czech Republic's official short name and was published in the United Nations UNTERM and UNGEGN country name databases on 5 July 2016. Czechia appears on some U.S. government web pages alongside Czech Republic, and Czechia is included in the ISO 3166 country codes list. In languages such as German (Tschechien), Danish (Tjekkiet), Norwegian (Tsjekkia) and Swedish (Tjeckien), the short name has been in common use for many years. In January 2017 Czechia replaced Czech Republic on Google Maps, but other map providers such as Bing Maps continue to use Czech Republic.
Many groups within the country do not support the name "Czechia", perceiving the term to have been abruptly adopted by bodies like the United Nations without consultation with the general population.
Archaeologists have found evidence of prehistoric human settlements in the area, dating back to the Paleolithic era. The figurine Venus of Dolní Věstonice, together with a few others from nearby locations, found here is the oldest known ceramic article in the world.
In the classical era, from the 3rd century BC Celtic migrations, the Boii and later in the 1st century, Germanic tribes of Marcomanni and Quadi settled there. Their king Maroboduus is the first documented ruler of Bohemia. During the Migration Period around the 5th century, many Germanic tribes moved westwards and southwards out of Central Europe.
Slavic people from the Black Sea–Carpathian region settled in the area (a movement that was also stimulated by the onslaught of peoples from Siberia and Eastern Europe: Huns, Avars, Bulgars and Magyars). In the sixth century they moved westwards into Bohemia, Moravia and some of present-day Austria and Germany.
During the 7th century, the Frankish merchant Samo, supporting the Slavs fighting against nearby settled Avars, became the ruler of the first known Slav state in Central Europe, the Samo's Empire. The principality Great Moravia, controlled by Moymir dynasty, arose in the 8th century and reached its zenith in the 9th when it held off the influence of the Franks. Great Moravia was Christianized, the crucial role played Byzantine mission of Cyril and Methodius. They created the artificial language Old Church Slavonic, the first literary and liturgic language of the Slavs, and the Glagolitic alphabet.
The Duchy of Bohemia emerged in the late 9th century, when it was unified by the Přemyslid dynasty. In 10th century Boleslaus I, Duke of Bohemia conquered Moravia, Silesia and expanded farther to the east. The Kingdom of Bohemia was, as the only kingdom in the Holy Roman Empire, a significant regional power during the Middle Ages. It was part of the Empire from 1002 till 1806, with the exception of the years 1440–1526.
In 1212, King Přemysl Ottokar I (bearing the title "king" from 1198) extracted the Golden Bull of Sicily (a formal edict) from the emperor, confirming Ottokar and his descendants' royal status; the Duchy of Bohemia was raised to a Kingdom. The bull declared that the King of Bohemia would be exempt from all future obligations to the Holy Roman Empire except for participation in imperial councils. German immigrants settled in the Bohemian periphery in the 13th century. Germans populated towns and mining districts and, in some cases, formed German colonies in the interior of Bohemia. In 1235, the Mongols launched an invasion of Europe. After the Battle of Legnica in Poland, the Mongols carried their raids into Moravia, but were defensively defeated at the fortified town of Olomouc. The Mongols subsequently invaded and defeated Hungary.
King Přemysl Otakar II earned the nickname Iron and Golden King because of his military power and wealth. He acquired Austria, Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, thus spreading the Bohemian territory to the Adriatic Sea. He met his death at the Battle on the Marchfeld in 1278 in a war with his rival, King Rudolph I of Germany. Ottokar's son Wenceslaus II acquired the Polish crown in 1300 for himself and the Hungarian crown for his son. He built a great empire stretching from the Danube river to the Baltic Sea. In 1306, the last king of Přemyslid line Wenceslaus III was murdered in mysterious circumstances in Olomouc while he was resting. After a series of dynastic wars, the House of Luxembourg gained the Bohemian throne.
The 14th century, in particular, the reign of the Bohemian king Charles IV (1316–1378), who in 1346 became King of the Romans and in 1354 both King of Italy and Holy Roman Emperor, is considered the Golden Age of Czech history. Of particular significance was the founding of Charles University in Prague in 1348, Charles Bridge, Charles Square. Much of Prague Castle and the cathedral of Saint Vitus in Gothic style were completed during his reign. He unified Brandenburg (until 1415), Lusatia (until 1635), and Silesia (until 1742) under the Bohemian crown. The Black Death, which had raged in Europe from 1347 to 1352, decimated the Kingdom of Bohemia in 1380, killing about 10% of the population.
By the end of the 14th century started the process of the so-called Bohemian (Czech) Reformation. The religious and social reformer Jan Hus formed a reform movement later named after him. Although Hus was named a heretic and burnt in Constance in 1415, his followers (led by warlords Jan Žižka and Prokop the Great) seceded from the Catholic Church and in the Hussite Wars (1419–1434) defeated five crusades organized against them by the Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund. Petr Chelčický continued with the Hussite Reformation movement. During the next two centuries, 90% of the inhabitants became adherents of the Hussite movement. Hussite George of Podebrady was even a king. Hus's thoughts were a major influence on the later emerging Lutheranism. Luther himself said "we are all Hussites, without having been aware of it" and considered himself as Hus' direct successor.
After 1526 Bohemia came increasingly under Habsburg control as the Habsburgs became first the elected and then in 1627 the hereditary rulers of Bohemia. The Austrian Habsburgs of the 16th century, the founders of the central European Habsburg Monarchy, were buried in Prague. Between 1583–1611 Prague was the official seat of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II and his court.
The Defenestration of Prague and subsequent revolt against the Habsburgs in 1618 marked the start of the Thirty Years' War, which quickly spread throughout Central Europe. In 1620, the rebellion in Bohemia was crushed at the Battle of White Mountain, and the ties between Bohemia and the Habsburgs' hereditary lands in Austria were strengthened. The leaders of the Bohemian Revolt were executed in 1621. The nobility and the middle class Protestants had to either convert to Catholicism or leave the country.
The following period, from 1620 to the late 18th century, has often been called colloquially the "Dark Age". The population of the Czech lands declined by a third through the expulsion of Czech Protestants as well as due to the war, disease and famine. The Habsburgs prohibited all Christian confessions other than Catholicism. The flowering of Baroque culture shows the ambiguity of this historical period. Ottoman Turks and Tatars invaded Moravia in 1663. In 1679–1680 the Czech lands faced a devastating plague and an uprising of serfs.
The reigns of Maria Theresa of Austria and her son Joseph II, Holy Roman Emperor and co-regent from 1765, were characterized by enlightened absolutism. In 1740, most of Silesia (except the southernmost area) was seized by King Frederick II of Prussia in the Silesian Wars. In 1757 the Prussians invaded Bohemia and after the Battle of Prague (1757) occupied the city. More than one quarter of Prague was destroyed and St. Vitus Cathedral also suffered heavy damage. Frederick was defeated soon after at the Battle of Kolín and had to leave Prague and retreat from Bohemia. In 1770 and 1771 Great Famine killed about one tenth of the Czech population, or 250,000 inhabitants, and radicalised the countryside leading to peasant uprisings. Serfdom was abolished (in two steps) between 1781 and 1848. Several large battles of the Napoleonic Wars – Battle of Austerlitz, Battle of Kulm – took place on the current territory of the Czech Republic. Joseph Radetzky von Radetz, born to a noble Czech family, was a field marshal and chief of the general staff of the Austrian Empire army during these wars.
The end of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806 led to degradation of the political status of the Kingdom of Bohemia. Bohemia lost its position of an electorate of the Holy Roman Empire as well as its own political representation in the Imperial Diet. Bohemian lands became part of the Austrian Empire and later of Austria–Hungary. During the 18th and 19th century the Czech National Revival began its rise, with the purpose to revive Czech language, culture and national identity. The Revolution of 1848 in Prague, striving for liberal reforms and autonomy of the Bohemian Crown within the Austrian Empire, was suppressed.
In 1866 Austria was defeated by Prussia in the Austro-Prussian War (see also Battle of Königgrätz and Peace of Prague). The Austrian Empire needed to redefine itself to maintain unity in the face of nationalism. At first it seemed that some concessions would be made also to Bohemia, but in the end the Emperor Franz Joseph I effected a compromise with Hungary only. The Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 and the never realized coronation of Franz Joseph as King of Bohemia led to a huge disappointment of Czech politicians. The Bohemian Crown lands became part of the so-called Cisleithania (officially "The Kingdoms and Lands represented in the Imperial Council").
Prague pacifist Bertha von Suttner was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1905. In the same year, the Czech Social Democratic and progressive politicians (including Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk) started the fight for universal suffrage. The first elections under universal male suffrage were held in 1907. The last King of Bohemia was Blessed Charles of Austria who ruled in 1916–1918.
An estimated 1.4 million Czech soldiers fought in World War I, of whom some 150,000 died. Although the majority of Czech soldiers fought for the Austro-Hungarian Empire, more than 90,000 Czech volunteers formed the Czechoslovak Legions in France, Italy and Russia, where they fought against the Central Powers and later against Bolshevik troops. In 1918, during the collapse of the Habsburg Empire at the end of World War I, the independent republic of Czechoslovakia, which joined the winning Allied powers, was created, with Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk in the lead. This new country incorporated the Bohemian Crown (Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia) and parts of the Kingdom of Hungary (Slovakia and the Carpathian Ruthenia) with significant German, Hungarian, Polish and Ruthenian speaking minorities. Czechoslovakia concluded a treaty of alliance with Romania and Yugoslavia (the so-called Little Entente) and particularly with France.
The First Czechoslovak Republic inherited only 27% of the population of the former Austria-Hungary, but nearly 80% of the industry, which enabled it to successfully compete with Western industrial states. In 1929 compared to 1913, the gross domestic product increased by 52% and industrial production by 41%. In 1938 Czechoslovakia held a 10th place in the world industrial production.
Although the First Czechoslovak Republic was a unitary state, it provided what were at the time rather extensive rights to its minorities and remained the only democracy in this part of Europe in the interwar period. The effects of the Great Depression including high unemployment and massive propaganda from Nazi Germany, however, resulted in discontent and strong support among ethnic Germans for a break from Czechoslovakia.
Adolf Hitler took advantage of this opportunity and, using Konrad Henlein's separatist Sudeten German Party, gained the largely German speaking Sudetenland (and its substantial Maginot Line-like border fortifications) through the 1938 Munich Agreement (signed by Nazi Germany, France, Britain, and Italy). Czechoslovakia was not invited to the conference, and Czechs and Slovaks call the Munich Agreement the Munich Betrayal because France (which had an alliance with Czechoslovakia) and Britain gave up Czechoslovakia instead of facing Hitler, which later proved inevitable.
Despite the mobilization of 1.2 million-strong Czechoslovak army and the Franco-Czech military alliance, Poland annexed the Zaolzie area around Český Těšín; Hungary gained parts of Slovakia and the Subcarpathian Rus as a result of the First Vienna Award in November 1938. The remainders of Slovakia and the Subcarpathian Rus gained greater autonomy, with the state renamed to "Czecho-Slovakia". After Nazi Germany threatened to annex part of Slovakia, allowing the remaining regions to be partitioned by Hungary and Poland, Slovakia chose to maintain its national and territorial integrity, seceding from Czecho-Slovakia in March 1939, and allying itself, as demanded by Germany, with Hitler's coalition.
The remaining Czech territory was occupied by Germany, which transformed it into the so-called Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. The protectorate was proclaimed part of the Third Reich, and the president and prime minister were subordinated to the Nazi Germany's Reichsprotektor. Subcarpathian Rus declared independence as the Republic of Carpatho-Ukraine on 15 March 1939 but was invaded by Hungary the same day and formally annexed the next day. Approximately 345,000 Czechoslovak citizens, including 277,000 Jews, were killed or executed while hundreds of thousands of others were sent to prisons and Nazi concentration camps or used as forced labour. Up to two-thirds of the citizens were in groups targeted by the Nazis for deportation or death. One concentration camp was located within the Czech territory at Terezín, north of Prague. The Nazi Generalplan Ost called for the extermination, expulsion, germanisation or enslavement of most or all Czechs for the purpose of providing more living space for the German people.
There was Czech resistance to Nazi occupation, both at home and abroad, most notably with the assassination of Nazi German leader Reinhard Heydrich by Czechoslovakian soldiers Jozef Gabčík and Jan Kubiš in a Prague suburb on 27 May 1942. On 9 June 1942 Hitler ordered bloody reprisals against the Czechs as a response to the Czech anti-Nazi resistance. The Edvard Beneš's Czechoslovak government-in-exile and its army fought against the Germans and were acknowledged by the Allies; Czech/Czechoslovak troops fought from the very beginning of the war in Poland, France, the UK, North Africa, the Middle East and the Soviet Union (see I Czechoslovakian Corps). The German occupation ended on 9 May 1945, with the arrival of the Soviet and American armies and the Prague uprising. An estimated 140,000 Soviet soldiers died in liberating Czechoslovakia from German rule.
In 1945–1946, almost the entire German-speaking minority in Czechoslovakia, about 3 million people, were expelled to Germany and Austria (see also Beneš decrees). During this time, thousands of Germans were held in prisons and detention camps or used as forced labour. In the summer of 1945, there were several massacres, such as the Postoloprty massacre. Research by a joint German and Czech commission of historians in 1995 found that the death toll of the expulsions was at least 15,000 persons and that it could range up to a maximum of 30,000 dead. The only Germans not expelled were some 250,000 who had been active in the resistance against the Nazi Germans or were considered economically important, though many of these emigrated later. Following a Soviet-organised referendum, the Subcarpathian Rus never returned under Czechoslovak rule but became part of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, as the Zakarpattia Oblast in 1946.
Czechoslovakia uneasily tried to play the role of a "bridge" between the West and East. However, the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia rapidly increased in popularity, with a general disillusionment with the West, because of the pre-war Munich Agreement, and a favourable popular attitude towards the Soviet Union, because of the Soviets' role in liberating Czechoslovakia from German rule. In the 1946 elections, the Communists gained 38% of the votes and became the largest party in the Czechoslovak parliament. They formed a coalition government with other parties of the National Front and moved quickly to consolidate power. A significant change came in 1948 with coup d'état by the Communist Party. The Communist People's Militias secured control of key locations in Prague, and a single party government was formed.
For the next 41 years, Czechoslovakia was a Communist state within the Eastern Bloc. This period is characterized by lagging behind the West in almost every aspect of social and economic development. The country's GDP per capita fell from the level of neighboring Austria below that of Greece or Portugal in the 1980s. The Communist government completely nationalized the means of production and established a command economy. The economy grew rapidly during the 1950s but slowed down in the 1960s and 1970s and stagnated in the 1980s.
The political climate was highly repressive during the 1950s, including numerous show trials (the most famous victims: Milada Horáková and Rudolf Slánský) and hundreds of thousands of political prisoners, but became more open and tolerant in the late 1960s, culminating in Alexander Dubček's leadership in the 1968 Prague Spring, which tried to create "socialism with a human face" and perhaps even introduce political pluralism. This was forcibly ended by invasion by all Warsaw Pact member countries with the exception of Romania and Albania on 21 August 1968. Student Jan Palach became a symbol of resistance to the occupation, when committed self-immolation as a political protest.
The invasion was followed by a harsh program of "Normalization" in the late 1960s and the 1970s. Until 1989, the political establishment relied on censorship of the opposition. Dissidents published Charter 77 in 1977, and the first of a new wave of protests were seen in 1988. Between 1948 and 1989 about 250,000 Czechs and Slovaks were sent to prison for political reasons, and over 400,000 emigrated.
Velvet Revolution and the European Union
In November 1989, Czechoslovakia returned to a liberal democracy through the peaceful "Velvet Revolution" (led by Václav Havel and his Civic Forum). However, Slovak national aspirations strengthened (see Hyphen War) and on 1 January 1993, the country peacefully split into the independent Czech Republic and Slovakia. Both countries went through economic reforms and privatisations, with the intention of creating a market economy. This process was largely successful; in 2006 the Czech Republic was recognised by the World Bank as a "developed country", and in 2009 the Human Development Index ranked it as a nation of "Very High Human Development".
From 1991, the Czech Republic, originally as part of Czechoslovakia and since 1993 in its own right, has been a member of the Visegrád Group and from 1995, the OECD. The Czech Republic joined NATO on 12 March 1999 and the European Union on 1 May 2004. On 21 December 2007 the Czech Republic joined the Schengen Area. The Social Democrats (Miloš Zeman, Vladimír Špidla, Stanislav Gross, Jiří Paroubek, Bohuslav Sobotka), or liberal-conservatives (Václav Klaus, Mirek Topolánek, Petr Nečas) led government of the Czech Republic yet.
The Czech landscape is exceedingly varied. Bohemia, to the west, consists of a basin drained by the Elbe (Czech: Labe) and the Vltava rivers, surrounded by mostly low mountains, such as the Krkonoše range of the Sudetes. The highest point in the country, Sněžka at 1,602 m (5,256 ft), is located here. Moravia, the eastern part of the country, is also quite hilly. It is drained mainly by the Morava River, but it also contains the source of the Oder River (Czech: Odra).
Water from the landlocked Czech Republic flows to three different seas: the North Sea, Baltic Sea and Black Sea. The Czech Republic also leases the Moldauhafen, a 30,000-square-metre (7.4-acre) lot in the middle of the Hamburg Docks, which was awarded to Czechoslovakia by Article 363 of the Treaty of Versailles, to allow the landlocked country a place where goods transported down river could be transferred to seagoing ships. The territory reverts to Germany in 2028.
Phytogeographically, the Czech Republic belongs to the Central European province of the Circumboreal Region, within the Boreal Kingdom. According to the World Wide Fund for Nature, the territory of the Czech Republic can be subdivided into four ecoregions: the Western European broadleaf forests, Central European mixed forests, Pannonian mixed forests, and Carpathian montane conifer forests.
There are four national parks in the Czech Republic. The oldest is Krkonoše National Park (Biosphere Reserve), and the others are Šumava National Park (Biosphere Reserve), Podyjí National Park, Bohemian Switzerland.
The three historical lands of the Czech Republic (formerly the core countries of the Bohemian Crown) correspond almost perfectly with the river basins of the Elbe (Czech: Labe) and the Vltava basin for Bohemia, the Morava one for Moravia, and the Oder river basin for Czech Silesia (in terms of the Czech territory).
The Czech Republic has a temperate continental climate, with warm summers and cold, cloudy and snowy winters. The temperature difference between summer and winter is relatively high, due to the landlocked geographical position.
Within the Czech Republic, temperatures vary greatly, depending on the elevation. In general, at higher altitudes, the temperatures decrease and precipitation increases. The wettest area in the Czech Republic is found around Bílý Potok in Jizera Mountains and the driest region is the Louny District to the northwest of Prague. Another important factor is the distribution of the mountains; therefore, the climate is quite varied.
At the highest peak of Sněžka (1,602 m or 5,256 ft), the average temperature is only −0.4 °C (31 °F), whereas in the lowlands of the South Moravian Region, the average temperature is as high as 10 °C (50 °F). The country's capital, Prague, has a similar average temperature, although this is influenced by urban factors.
The coldest month is usually January, followed by February and December. During these months, there is usually snow in the mountains and sometimes in the major cities and lowlands. During March, April and May, the temperature usually increases rapidly, especially during April, when the temperature and weather tends to vary widely during the day. Spring is also characterized by high water levels in the rivers, due to melting snow with occasional flooding.
The warmest month of the year is July, followed by August and June. On average, summer temperatures are about 20 °C (36 °F) – 30 °C (54 °F) higher than during winter. Summer is also characterized by rain and storms.
Autumn generally begins in September, which is still relatively warm and dry. During October, temperatures usually fall below 15 °C (59 °F) or 10 °C (50 °F) and deciduous trees begin to shed their leaves. By the end of November, temperatures usually range around the freezing point.
Most rain falls during the summer. Sporadic rainfall is relatively constant throughout the year (in Prague, the average number of days per month experiencing at least 0.1 mm of rain varies from 12 in September and October to 16 in November) but concentrated heavy rainfall (days with more than 10 mm per day) are more frequent in the months of May to August (average around two such days per month).
The Czech Republic ranks as the 27th most environmentally conscious country in the world in Environmental Performance Index. The Czech Republic has four National Parks (Šumava National Park, Krkonoše National Park, České Švýcarsko National Park, Podyjí National Park) and 25 Protected Landscape Areas.
Government and politics
The Czech Republic is a pluralist multi-party parliamentary representative democracy, with the Prime Minister as the head of government. The Parliament (Parlament České republiky) is bicameral, with the Chamber of Deputies (Czech: Poslanecká sněmovna) (200 members) and the Senate (Czech: Senát) (81 members).
The president is a formal head of state with limited and specific powers, most importantly to return bills to the parliament, appoint members to the board of the Czech National Bank, nominate constitutional court judges for the Senate's approval and dissolve the Chamber of Deputies under certain special and unusual circumstances. The president and vice president of the Supreme Court are appointed by the President of the Republic. He also appoints the prime minister, as well the other members of the cabinet on a proposal by the prime minister. From 1993 until 2012, the President of the Czech Republic was selected by a joint session of the parliament for a five-year term, with no more than two consecutive terms (2x Václav Havel, 2x Václav Klaus). Since 2013 the presidential election is direct. Miloš Zeman was the first directly elected Czech President.
The Government of the Czech Republic's exercise of executive power derives from the Constitution. The members of the government are the Prime Minister, Deputy ministers and other ministers. The Government is responsible to the Chamber of Deputies.
The Prime Minister is the head of government and wields considerable powers, such as the right to set the agenda for most foreign and domestic policy and choose government ministers. The current Prime Minister of the Czech Republic is Bohuslav Sobotka, serving since 17 January 2014 as 11th Prime Minister.
The members of the Chamber of Deputies are elected for a four-year term by proportional representation, with a 5% election threshold. There are 14 voting districts, identical to the country's administrative regions. The Chamber of Deputies, the successor to the Czech National Council, has the powers and responsibilities of the now defunct federal parliament of the former Czechoslovakia.
The members of the Senate are elected in single-seat constituencies by two-round runoff voting for a six-year term, with one-third elected every even year in the autumn. The first election was in 1996, for differing terms. This arrangement is modeled on the U.S. Senate, but each constituency is roughly the same size and the voting system used is a two-round runoff. The Senate is unpopular among the public and suffers from low election turnout.
|President||Miloš Zeman||SPO||8 March 2013|
|Prime Minister||Bohuslav Sobotka||ČSSD||17 January 2014|
|Chairman of the Chamber of Deputies||Jan Hamáček||ČSSD||27 November 2013|
|President of the Senate||Milan Štěch||ČSSD||24 November 2010|
|This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (September 2015)|
The Czech Republic has a civil law system based on the continental type, rooted in Germanic legal culture. Czech judiciary has triumvirate system of the main courts, the Constitutional Court which oversees violations of the Constitution by either the legislature or by the government consisting of 15 constitutional judges, the Supreme Court is the court of highest appeal for almost all legal cases heard in the Czech Republic formed of 67 judges and the Supreme Administrative Court decides on issues of procedural and administrative propriety. It also has jurisdiction over many political matters, such as the formation and closure of political parties, jurisdictional boundaries between government entities, and the eligibility of persons to stand for public office.
The Czech Republic has an established structure of foreign relations. It is a member of the United Nations, the European Union, NATO, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Council of Europe and is an observer to the Organization of American States. The embassies of most countries with diplomatic relations with the Czech Republic are located in Prague, while consulates are located across the country.
According to the 2017 Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index, Czech citizens have visa-free access to 168 countries, which ranks them 9th and World Tourism Organization ranks Czech passport 24th, which makes them one of the least restricted by visas to travel abroad. The US Visa Waiver Program applies to Czech nationals.
The Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs have primary roles in setting foreign policy. Membership in the European Union is central to the Czech Republic's foreign policy. The Office for Foreign Relations and Information (ÚZSI) serves as the foreign intelligence agency responsible for espionage and foreign policy briefings, as well as protection of Czech Republic's embassies abroad.
The Czech Republic has strong ties with Slovakia, Poland and Hungary as a member of the Visegrad Group, as well as with Germany, Israel, the United States and the European Union and its members.
The Czech armed forces consist of the Czech Land Forces, the Czech Air Force and of specialized support units. The armed forces are managed by the Ministry of Defence. The President of the Czech Republic is Commander-in-chief of the armed forces. In 2004 the army transformed itself into a fully professional organization and compulsory military service was abolished. The country has been a member of NATO since 12 March 1999. Defense spending is approximately 1.04% of the GDP (2015). The armed forces are charged with protecting the Czech Republic and its allies, promoting global security interests, and contributing to NATO.
Currently, as a member of NATO, the Czech military are participating in KFOR and ISAF (renamed to Resolute Support) operations and have soldiers in Afghanistan, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Somalia, Israel and Mali. The Czech Air Force also served in the Baltic states and Iceland. Main equipment includes: multi-role fighters JAS 39 Gripen, combat aircraft Aero L-159 Alca, modernized attack helicopters Mi-35, armored vehicles Pandur II, OT-64, OT-90, BVP-2 and Czech modernized tanks T-72 (T-72M4CZ).
Since 2000, the Czech Republic has been divided into thirteen regions (Czech: kraje, singular kraj) and the capital city of Prague. Every region has its own elected regional assembly (krajské zastupitelstvo) and hejtman (a regional governor). In Prague, the assembly and presidential powers are executed by the city council and the mayor.
The older seventy-six districts (okresy, singular okres) including three "statutory cities" (without Prague, which had special status) lost most of their importance in 1999 in an administrative reform; they remain as territorial divisions and seats of various branches of state administration.
|A||Prague a||Hlavní město Praha||n/a||1,170,571||1,268,796|
|S||Central Bohemian Region||Středočeský kraj||Pragueb||1,144,071||1,289,211|
|C||South Bohemian Region||Jihočeský kraj||České Budějovice||625,712||628,336|
|P||Plzeň Region||Plzeňský kraj||Plzeň||549,618||570,401|
|K||Karlovy Vary Region||Karlovarský kraj||Karlovy Vary||304,588||295,595|
|U||Ústí nad Labem Region||Ústecký kraj||Ústí nad Labem||822,133||835,814|
|L||Liberec Region||Liberecký kraj||Liberec||427,563||432,439|
|H||Hradec Králové Region||Královéhradecký kraj||Hradec Králové||547,296||547,916|
|E||Pardubice Region||Pardubický kraj||Pardubice||505,285||511,627|
|M||Olomouc Region||Olomoucký kraj||Olomouc||635,126||628,427|
|T||Moravian-Silesian Region||Moravskoslezský kraj||Ostrava||1,257,554||1,205,834|
|B||South Moravian Region||Jihomoravský kraj||Brno||1,123,201||1,163,508|
|Z||Zlín Region||Zlínský kraj||Zlín||590,706||579,944|
|J||Vysočina Region||Kraj Vysočina||Jihlava||517,153||505,565|
a Capital city.
b Office location.
The Czech Republic possesses a developed, high-income economy with a per capita GDP rate that is 87% of the European Union average. The most stable and prosperous of the post-Communist states, the Czech Republic saw growth of over 6% annually in the three years before the outbreak of the recent global economic crisis. Growth has been led by exports to the European Union, especially Germany, and foreign investment, while domestic demand is reviving.
Most of the economy has been privatised, including the banks and telecommunications. A 2009 survey in cooperation with the Czech Economic Association found that the majority of Czech economists favour continued liberalization in most sectors of the economy. Dividends worth CZK 300 billion were paid to foreign owners in 2013.
The country has been a member of the Schengen Area since 1 May 2004, having abolished border controls, completely opening its borders with all of its neighbours (Germany, Austria, Poland and Slovakia) on 21 December 2007. The Czech Republic became a member of the World Trade Organisation on 1 January 1995. In 2012, Nearly 80% of Czech exports went to, and more than 65% of Czech imports came from, other European Union member states.
Monetary policy is conducted by the Czech National Bank, whose independence is guaranteed by the Constitution. The official currency is the Czech koruna. In November 2013, the Czech National Bank started to intervene to weaken the exchange rate of Czech koruna through a monetary stimulus in order to stop the currency from excessive strengthening and to fight against deflation. In late 2016, the CNB stated that the return to conventional monetary policy was planned for mid-2017. When it joined EU, the Czech Republic obligated itself to adopt the euro, but the date of adoption has not been determined.
The Programme for International Student Assessment, coordinated by the OECD, currently ranks the Czech education system as the 15th best in the world, higher than the OECD average. The Czech Republic is ranked 24th in the 2015 Index of Economic Freedom.
In December 2016, Czech GDP growth was 1.9%, giving the Czech economy the average growth in the European Union. The unemployment rate is 3.5%, giving the Czech Republic the lowest unemployment rate in the European Union.
In 2015 largest companies of the Czech Republic by revenue were automobile manufacturer Škoda Auto, utility company ČEZ Group, conglomerate Agrofert, energy trading company RWE Supply & Trading CZ and electronics manufacturer Foxconn CZ. Other Czech transportation companies include: Škoda Transportation (tramways, trolleybuses, metro), Tatra (the third oldest car maker in the world), Karosa (buses), Aero Vodochody (airplanes) and Jawa Moto (motorcycles). Škoda Auto is one of the largest car manufacturers in Central Europe. In 2014, it sold a record number of 1,037,000 cars and said it aimed to double sales by 2018.
Production of Czech electricity exceeds consumption by about 10 TWh per year, which are exported. Nuclear power presently provides about 30 percent of the total power needs, its share is projected to increase to 40 percent. In 2005, 65.4 percent of electricity was produced by steam and combustion power plants (mostly coal); 30 percent by nuclear plants; and 4.6 percent from renewable sources, including hydropower. The largest Czech power resource is Temelín Nuclear Power Station, another nuclear power plant is in Dukovany.
The Czech Republic is reducing its dependence on highly polluting low-grade brown coal as a source of energy. Natural gas is procured from Russian Gazprom, roughly three-fourths of domestic consumption and from Norwegian companies, which make up most of the remaining one-fourth. Russian gas is imported via Ukraine (Druzhba pipeline), Norwegian gas is transported through Germany. Gas consumption (approx. 100 TWh in 2003–2005) is almost double electricity consumption. South Moravia has small oil and gas deposits.
Václav Havel Airport in Prague is the main international airport in the country. In 2010, it handled 11.6 million passengers, which makes it the second busiest airport in Central Europe. In total, the Czech Republic has 46 airports with paved runways, six of which provide international air services in Brno, Karlovy Vary, Mošnov (near Ostrava), Pardubice, Prague and Kunovice (near Uherské Hradiště).
České dráhy (the Czech Railways) is the main railway operator in the Czech Republic, with about 180 million passengers carried yearly. With 9,505 km (5,906.13 mi) of tracks, the Czech Republic has one of the densest railway networks in Europe. Of that number, 2,926 km (1,818.13 mi) is electrified, 7,617 km (4,732.98 mi) are single-line tracks and 1,866 km (1,159.48 mi) are double and multiple-line tracks. Maximum speed is limited to 160 km/h. In 2006 seven Italian tilting trainsets Pendolino ČD Class 680 entered service.
Russia, via pipelines through Ukraine and to a lesser extent, Norway, via pipelines through Germany, supply the Czech Republic with liquid and natural gas.
The road network in the Czech Republic is 55,653 km (34,581.17 mi) long. There are 1,247 km of motorways. The speed limit is 50 km/h within towns, 90 km/h outside of towns and 130 km/h on motorways.
Communications and IT
The Czech Republic ranks in the top 10 countries worldwide with the fastest average internet speed. By the beginning of 2008, there were over 800 mostly local WISPs, with about 350,000 subscribers in 2007. Plans based on either GPRS, EDGE, UMTS or CDMA2000 are being offered by all three mobile phone operators (T-Mobile, Telefónica O2, Vodafone) and internet provider U:fon. Government-owned Český Telecom slowed down broadband penetration. At the beginning of 2004, local-loop unbundling began and alternative operators started to offer ADSL and also SDSL. This and later privatisation of Český Telecom helped drive down prices.
On 1 July 2006, Český Telecom was acquired by globalized company (Spain-owned) Telefónica group and adopted the new name Telefónica O2 Czech Republic. As of June 2014, VDSL and ADSL2+ are offered in many variants, with download speeds of up to 40 Mbit/s and upload speeds of up to 2Mbit/s. Cable internet is gaining popularity with its higher download speeds ranging from 2 Mbit/s to 1 Gbit/s.
Two major antivirus companies, Avast and AVG, were founded in the Czech Republic. It was announced in July 2016, that Avast is acquiring rival AVG for US$1.3 billion, together these companies have a user base of about 400 million people and 40% of the consumer market outside of China.
Science and philosophy
The Czech lands have a long and rich scientific tradition. The research based on cooperation between universities, Academy of Sciences and specialised research centers brings new inventions and impulses in this area. Important inventions include the modern contact lens, the separation of modern blood types, and the production of Semtex plastic explosive.
Cyril and Methodius laid the foundations of education and the Czech theological thinking in the 9th century. Original theological and philosophical stream – hussite – originated in the Middle Ages. It was represented by Jan Hus, Jerome of Prague or Petr Chelčický. At the end of the Middle Ages, Jan Amos Comenius substantially contributed to the development of modern pedagogy. Jewish philosophy in the Czech lands was represented mainly by Judah Loew ben Bezalel (known for the legend of the Golem of Prague). Bernard Bolzano was the personality of German-speaking philosophy in the Czech lands. Bohuslav Balbín was a key Czech philosopher and historian of the Baroque era. He also started the struggle for rescuing the Czech language. This culminated in the Czech national revival in the first half of the 19th century. Linguistics (Josef Dobrovský, Pavel Jozef Šafařík, Josef Jungmann), etnography (Karel Jaromír Erben, František Ladislav Čelakovský) and history (František Palacký) played a big role in revival. Palacký was the eminent personality. He wrote the first synthetic history of the Czech nation. He was also the first Czech modern politician and geopolitician (see also Austro-Slavism). He is often called "The Father of the Nation". In the second half of the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century there was a huge development of social sciences (personalities speaks Czech but also German). Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk laid the foundations of Czech sociology. Konstantin Jireček founded Byzantology (see also Jireček Line). Alois Musil was a prominent orientalist, Emil Holub ethnographer. Lubor Niederle was a founder of modern Czech archeology. Sigmund Freud established psychoanalysis. Edmund Husserl defined a new philosophical doctrine – phenomenology. Joseph Schumpeter brought genuine economic ideas of "creative destruction" of capitalism. Hans Kelsen was significant legal theorist. Karl Kautsky influenced the history of Marxism. On the contrary, economist Eugen Böhm von Bawerk led a campaign against Marxism. Max Wertheimer was one of the three founders of Gestalt psychology. Musicologists Eduard Hanslick and Guido Adler influenced debates on the development of classical music in Vienna. Art historian Max Dvořák is pushed in Vienna too, anthropologist Aleš Hrdlička in the United States. New Czechoslovak republic (1918–1938) wanted to develop sciences. Significant linguistic school was established in Prague – Prague Linguistic Circle (Vilém Mathesius, Jan Mukařovský, René Wellek), moreover linguist Bedřich Hrozný deciphered the ancient Hittite language and linguist Julius Pokorny deepened knowledge about Celtic languages. Philosopher Herbert Feigl was a member of the Vienna Circle. Ladislav Klíma has developed a special version of Nietzschean philosophy. In the second half of the 20th century can be mentioned philosopher Ernest Gellner who is considered one of the leading theoreticians on the issue of nationalism. Also Czech historian Miroslav Hroch analyzed modern nationalism. Vilém Flusser developed the philosophy of technology and image. Marxist Karel Kosík was a major philosopher in the background of the Prague Spring 1968. Jan Patočka and Václav Havel were the main ideologists of the Charter 77. Egon Bondy was a major philosophical spokesman of the Czech underground in the 1970s and 1980s. Czech Egyptology has scored some successes, its main representative is Miroslav Verner. Czech psychologist Stanislav Grof developed a method of "Holotropic Breathwork". Experimental archaeologist Pavel Pavel made several attempts, they had to answer the question how ancient civilizations transported heavy weights.
Science and technology
Famous scientists who were born on the territory of the current Czech Republic:
- Gregor Mendel (1822–1884), often called the "father of genetics", is famed for his research concerning the inheritance of genetic traits.
- Kurt Gödel (1906–1978) logician and mathematician, who became famous by his two incompleteness theorems.
- Peter Grünberg (* 1939) Nobel Prize laureate in Physics 2007.
- Gerty and Carl Cori – Nobel Prize laureates in Physiology or Medicine 1947.
- Jaroslav Heyrovský (1890–1967), inventor of polarography, electroanalytical chemistry and recipient of the Nobel Prize.
- Ernst Mach (1838–1916) physicist and critic of Newton's theories of space and time, foreshadowing Einstein's theory of relativity.
- Alois Senefelder (1771–1834), inventor of lithographic printing.
- Jan Evangelista Purkyně (1787–1869), anatomist and physiologist responsible for the discovery of Purkinje cells, Purkinje fibres and sweat glands, as well as Purkinje images and the Purkinje shift.
- Karl von Terzaghi (1883–1963), geologist known as the "father of soil mechanics".
- Vladimír Remek was the first person outside of the Soviet Union and the United States to go into space (in March 1978).
- Johann Josef Loschmidt (1821–1895), chemist, performed ground-breaking work in crystal forms.
- Viktor Kaplan (1876–1934), engineer naturalized in Czechoslovakia, the inventor of the Kaplan turbine.
- Josef Ressel (1793–1857), inventor of the screw propeller and modern compass.
- Eduard Čech (1893–1960), mathematician with significant contributions in topology.
- Carl Borivoj Presl (1794–1852) and Jan Svatopluk Presl (1791–1849), brothers, both prominent botanists.
- Heinrich Wilhelm Schott (1794–1865), botanist well known for his extensive work on aroids.
- Carl von Rokitansky (1804– 1878), Joseph Škoda (1805–1881) and Ferdinand Ritter von Hebra (1816–1880), Czech doctors and founders of the Modern Medical School of Vienna.
- Georg Joseph Kamel (1661–1706), Czech Jesuit, pharmacist and naturalist known for producing first comprehensive accounts of the Philippine flora; genus of flowering plants Camellia is named in his honour.
- Ignaz von Born (1742 –1791), mineralogist and metallurgist, one of founders of the Royal Bohemian Society of Sciences.
- Kaspar Maria von Sternberg (1761–1838), mineralogist, founder of the Bohemian National Museum in Prague.
- Johannes Widmann (1460–1498), mathematician, inventor of the + and − symbols.
- Otto Wichterle (1913–1998) and Drahoslav Lím (1925–2003), Czech chemists responsible for the invention of the modern contact lens and silon (synthetic fiber).
- Julius Vincenz von Krombholz (1782–1843), biologist, founder of the great tradition of Czech mycology.
- Friedrich von Berchtold (1781–1876), botanist, an avid worker for Czech national revival.
- Hans Tropsch (1889–1935), chemist responsible for the development of the Fischer-Tropsch process.
- František Josef Gerstner (1756–1832), physicist and engineer, built the first iron works and the first steam engine in Czech lands.
- Christian Mayer (1719–1783), astronomer, pioneer in the study of binary stars.
- Jan Janský (1873–1921), serologist and neurologist, discovered the ABO blood groups.
- Jan Marek Marci (1595–1667), mathematician, physicist and imperial physician, one of the founders of spectroscopy.
- František Křižík (1847–1941), electrical engineer, inventor of the arc lamp.
- Ferdinand Stoliczka (1838–1874), palaeontologist who died of high altitude sickness during an expedition across the Himalayas.
- Wenceslas Bojer (1795–1856), naturalist and botanist.
- Zdenko Hans Skraup (1850–1910), chemist who discovered the Skraup reaction, the first quinoline synthesis.
- Václav Prokop Diviš (1698–1765), inventor of the first grounded lightning rod.
- Jakub Kryštof Rad (1799–1871), inventor of sugar cubes.
- Josef Hlavka (15 February 1831 – 11 March 1908), was a Czech architect, builder, philanthropist and founder of the oldest Czech foundation for sciences and arts.
- Jakub Husník (1837–1916), improved the process of photolithography.
- Karel Klíč (1841–1926), painter and photographer, inventor of the photogravure.
- Josef Čapek (1887–1945) and Karel Čapek (1890–1938), brothers who originated the word robot, for drama R.U.R.
- Stanislav Brebera (1925–2012), inventor of the plastic explosive Semtex in 1966.
- Antonín Holý (1936–2012), scientist and chemist, in 2009 was involved in creation of the most effective drug in the treatment of AIDS.
- Ferdinand Porsche (1875–1951), automotive designer.
- Johann Palisa (1848–1925), astronomer who discovered 122 asteroids
- Karel Domin (1882–1953), botanist, specialist in Australian taxonomy
A number of other scientists are also connected in some way with the Czech lands. They taught at the University of Prague: astronomers Johannes Kepler and Tycho Brahe, physicists Christian Doppler, Nikola Tesla, Albert Einstein or geologist Joachim Barrande.
The Czech economy gets a substantial income from tourism. Prague is the fifth most visited city in Europe after London, Paris, Istanbul and Rome. In 2001, the total earnings from tourism reached 118 billion CZK, making up 5.5% of GNP and 9% of overall export earnings. The industry employs more than 110,000 people – over 1% of the population. The country's reputation has suffered with guidebooks and tourists reporting overcharging by taxi drivers and pickpocketing problems mainly in Prague, though the situation has improved recently. Since 2005, Prague's mayor, Pavel Bém, has worked to improve this reputation by cracking down on petty crime and, aside from these problems, Prague is a safe city. Also, the Czech Republic as a whole generally has a low crime rate. For tourists, the Czech Republic is considered a safe destination to visit. The low crime rate makes most cities and towns very safe to walk around.
One of the most visited tourist attractions in the Czech Republic is the Nether district Vítkovice in Ostrava, a post-industrial city on the northeast of the country. The territory was formerly the site of steel production, but now it hosts a technical museum with many interactive expositions for tourists.
There are several centres of tourist activity. The spa towns, such as Karlovy Vary, Mariánské Lázně and Františkovy Lázně and Jáchymov, are particularly popular relaxing holiday destinations. Architectural heritage is another object of interest to visitors – it includes many castles and châteaux from different historical epoques, namely Karlštejn Castle, Český Krumlov and the Lednice–Valtice area.
There are 12 cathedrals and 15 churches elevated to the rank of basilica by the Pope, calm monasteries, many modern and ancient churches – for example Pilgrimage Church of Saint John of Nepomuk is one of those inscribed on the World Heritage List. Away from the towns, areas such as Český ráj, Šumava and the Krkonoše Mountains attract visitors seeking outdoor pursuits.
The country is also known for its various museums. Puppetry and marionette exhibitions are very popular, with a number of puppet festivals throughout the country. Aquapalace Praha in Čestlice near Prague, is the biggest water park in central Europe.
The Czech Republic has a number of beer festivals, including: Czech Beer Festival (the biggest Czech beer festival, it is usually 17 days long and held every year in May in Prague), Pilsner Fest (every year in August in Plzeň), The Olomoucký pivní festival (in Olomouc) or festival Slavnosti piva v Českých Budějovicích (in České Budějovice).
According to preliminary results of the 2011 census, the majority of the inhabitants of the Czech Republic are Czechs (63.7%), followed by Moravians (4.9%), Slovaks (1.4%), Poles (0.4%), Germans (0.2%) and Silesians (0.1%). As the 'nationality' was an optional item, a substantial number of people left this field blank (26.0%). According to some estimates, there are about 250,000 Romani people in the Czech Republic.
There were 437,581 foreigners residing in the country in September 2013, according to the Czech Statistical Office, with the largest groups being Ukrainian (106,714), Slovak (89,273), Vietnamese (61,102), Russian (32,828), Polish (19,378), German (18,099), Bulgarian (8,837), American (6,695), Romanian (6,425), Moldovan (5,860), Chinese (5,427), British (5,413), Mongolian (5,308), Kazakh (4,850), Belarusian (4,562).
The Jewish population of Bohemia and Moravia, 118,000 according to the 1930 census, was virtually annihilated by the Nazi Germans during the Holocaust. There were approximately 4,000 Jews in the Czech Republic in 2005. The former Czech prime minister, Jan Fischer, is of Jewish ethnicity and faith.
The total fertility rate (TFR) in 2015 was estimated at 1.44 children born/woman, which is below the replacement rate of 2.1, and one of the lowest in the world. In 2016, 48.6% of births were to unmarried women. The life expectancy in 2013 was estimated at 77.56 years (74.29 years male, 81.01 years female). Immigration increased the population by almost 1% in 2007. About 77,000 people immigrate to the Czech Republic annually. Vietnamese immigrants began settling in the Czech Republic during the Communist period, when they were invited as guest workers by the Czechoslovak government. In 2009, there were about 70,000 Vietnamese in the Czech Republic. Most decide to stay in the country permanently.
At the turn of the 20th century, Chicago was the city with the third largest Czech population, after Prague and Vienna. According to the 2010 US census, there are 1,533,826 Americans of full or partial Czech descent.
|Rank||City||Region||Population ||Metropolitan area|
|1||Prague||Prague, the Capital City||1,259,079||2,300,000|
|7||Ústí nad Labem||Ústí nad Labem||93,409||243,878|
|8||České Budějovice||South Bohemian||93,285||190,000|
|9||Hradec Králové||Hradec Králové||92,808||-|
|14||Most||Ústí nad Labem||67,089||95,316|
|19||Teplice||Ústí nad Labem||50,079||-|
|20||Děčín||Ústí nad Labem||49,833||-|
The Czech Republic has one of the least religious populations in the world. Ever since 1620, the Czech people have been historically characterised as "tolerant and even indifferent towards religion". Christianization in the 9th and 10th centuries introduced Roman Catholicism. After the Bohemian Reformation, most Czechs became followers of Jan Hus, Petr Chelčický and other regional Protestant Reformers. Taborites and Utraquists were major Hussite groups. After the Reformation, some went with the teachings of Martin Luther, especially Sudetenland Germans. After the Habsburgs regained control of Bohemia, the whole population was forcibly converted to Roman Catholicism. Going forward, Czechs have become more wary and pessimistic of religion overall. A long history of resistance to the Catholic Church followed as it suffered a schism with the Czechoslovak Hussite Church in 1920, lost the bulk of its adherents during the Communist era and continues to lose in the modern, ongoing secularization. Protestantism never recovered after the Counter-Reformation was introduced by the Austrian Habsburgs in 1620.
According to the 2011 census, 34% of the population stated they had no religion, 10.3% was Roman Catholic, 0.8% was Protestant (0.5% Czech Brethren and 0.4% Hussite), and 9% followed other forms of religion both denominational or not (of which 863 people answered they are Pagan). 45% of the population did not answer the question about religion. From 1991 to 2001 and further to 2011 the adherence to Roman Catholicism decreased from 39% to 27% and then to 10%; Protestantism similarly declined from 3.7% to 2% and then to 0.8%.
According to a Eurobarometer Poll in 2010, 16% of Czech citizens responded that "they believe there is a God" (the lowest rate among the countries of the European Union), whereas 44% answered that "they believe there is some sort of spirit or life force" and 37% said that "they do not believe there is any sort of spirit, God or life force".
A 2012 poll about religiosity in the European Union by Eurobarometer found that Non believer/Agnostics were the largest group in the Czech Republic accounting for 39% of Czech citizens. Christianity account 34% of Czech citizens, Catholics are the largest Christian group in the Czech Republic, accounting for 29% of Czech citizens, while Protestants make up 2%, and Other Christian make up 3%. Atheist accounts for 20%, Undeclared accounts for 6%.
The most recent Pew Research Center, found that in 2015 72% of the population of Czech Republic declared itself religiously unaffiliated—a category which includes atheists, agnostics and those who describe their religion as “nothing in particular”, 26% Christians, while 2% belonged to other faiths. The Christians divided between 21% Roman Catholic, 4% other Christians and 1% are Eastern Orthodox. While the religiously unaffiliated divided between 25% as atheists, 1% agnostics and 46% as nothing in particular.
Education in the Czech Republic is compulsory for 9 years, but the average number of years of education is 13.1. Additionally, the Czech Republic has a relatively equal educational system in comparison with other countries in Europe. Founded in 1348, Charles University was the first university in Central Europe. Other major universities in the country are Masaryk University, Czech Technical University, Palacký University, Academy of Performing Arts and University of Economics.
Venus of Dolní Věstonice is the treasure of prehistoric art. Theodoric of Prague was the most famous Czech painter in the Gothic era. For example, he decorated the castle Karlstejn. In the Baroque era, the famous painters were Wenceslaus Hollar, Jan Kupecký, Karel Škréta, Anton Raphael Mengs or Petr Brandl, sculptors Matthias Braun and Ferdinand Brokoff. In the first half of the 19th century, Josef Mánes joined the romantic movement. In the second half of the 19th century had the main say the so-called "National Theatre generation": sculptor Josef Václav Myslbek and painters Mikoláš Aleš, Václav Brožík, Vojtěch Hynais or Julius Mařák. At the end of the century came a wave of Art Nouveau. Alfons Mucha becomes the main representative. He is today the most famous Czech painter. Mainly known for Art Nouveau posters and his cycle of 20 large canvases named the Slav Epic, which depicts the history of Czechs and other Slavs. As of 2012[update], the Slav Epic can be seen in the Veletržní Palace of the National Gallery in Prague, which manages the largest collection of art in the Czech Republic. Max Švabinský was another important Art nouveau painter. The 20th century brought avant-garde revolution. In the Czech lands mainly expressionist and cubist: Josef Čapek, Emil Filla, Bohumil Kubišta, Jan Zrzavý. Surrealism emerged particularly in the work of Toyen, Josef Šíma and Karel Teige. In the world, however, he pushed mainly František Kupka, a pioneer of abstract painting. As illustrators and cartoonists in the first half of the 20th century gained fame Josef Lada, Zdeněk Burian or Emil Orlík. Art photography has become a new field (František Drtikol, Josef Sudek, later Jan Saudek or Josef Koudelka).
The Czech Republic is known worldwide for its individually made, mouth blown and decorated Bohemian glass.
The earliest preserved stone buildings in Bohemia and Moravia date back to the time of the Christianization in the 9th and 10th century. Since the Middle Ages, the Czech lands have been using the same architectural styles as most of Western and Central Europe. The oldest still standing churches were built in the Romanesque style (St. George's Basilica, St. Procopius Basilica in Třebíč). During the 13th century it was replaced by the Gothic style (Charles Bridge, Bethlehem Chapel, Old New Synagogue, Sedlec Ossuary, Old Town Hall with Prague astronomical clock, Church of Our Lady before Týn). In the 14th century Emperor Charles IV invited to his court in Prague talented architects from France and Germany, Matthias of Arras and Peter Parler (Karlštejn, St. Vitus Cathedral, St. Barbara's Church in Kutná Hora). During the Middle Ages, many fortified castles were built by the king and aristocracy, as well as many monasteries (Strahov Monastery, Špilberk, Křivoklát Castle, Vyšší Brod Monastery). During the Hussite wars, many of them were damaged or destroyed.
The Renaissance style penetrated the Bohemian Crown in the late 15th century when the older Gothic style started to be slowly mixed with Renaissance elements (architects Matěj Rejsek, Benedikt Rejt and their Powder Tower). An outstanding example of the pure Renaissance architecture in Bohemia is the Royal Summer Palace, which was situated in a newly established garden of Prague Castle. Evidence of the general reception of the Renaissance in Bohemia, involving a massive influx of Italian architects, can be found in spacious châteaux with elegant arcade courtyards and geometrically arranged gardens (Litomyšl Castle, Hluboká Castle). Emphasis was placed on comfort, and buildings that were built for entertainment purposes also appeared.
In the 17th century, the Baroque style spread throughout the Crown of Bohemia. Very outstanding are the architectural projects of the Czech nobleman and imperial generalissimo Albrecht von Wallenstein from the 1620s (Wallenstein Palace). His architects Andrea Spezza and Giovanni Pieroni reflected the most recent Italian production and were very innovative at the same time. Czech Baroque architecture is considered to be a unique part of the European cultural heritage thanks to its extensiveness and extraordinariness (Kroměříž Castle, Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc, St. Nicholas Church at Malá Strana, Karlova Koruna Chateau). In the first third of the 18th century the Bohemian lands were one of the leading artistic centers of the Baroque style. In Bohemia there was completed the development of the Radical Baroque style created in Italy by Francesco Borromini and Guarino Guarini in a very original way. Leading architects of the Bohemian Baroque were Jean-Baptiste Mathey, František Maxmilián Kaňka, Christoph Dientzenhofer, and his son Kilian Ignaz Dientzenhofer.
In the 18th century Bohemia produced an architectural peculiarity – the Baroque Gothic style, a synthesis of the Gothic and Baroque styles. This was not a simple return to Gothic details, but rather an original Baroque transformation. The main representative and originator of this style was Jan Blažej Santini-Aichel, who used this style in renovating medieval monastic buildings or in Pilgrimage Church of Saint John of Nepomuk.
During the 19th century, the revival architectural styles were very popular in the Bohemian monarchy. Many churches were restored to their presumed medieval appearance and there were constructed many new buildings in the Neo-Romanesque, Neo-Gothic and Neo-Renaissance styles (National Theatre, Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape, Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul in Brno). At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries the new art style appeared in the Czech lands – Art Nouveau. The best-known representatives of Czech Art Nouveau architecture were Osvald Polívka, who designed the Municipal House in Prague, Josef Fanta, the architect of the Prague Main Railway Station, Jan Letzel, Josef Hoffmann and Jan Kotěra.
Bohemia contributed an unusual style to the world's architectural heritage when Czech architects attempted to transpose the Cubism of painting and sculpture into architecture (House of the Black Madonna). During the first years of the independent Czechoslovakia (after 1918), a specifically Czech architectural style, called Rondo-Cubism, came into existence. Together with the pre-war Czech Cubist architecture it is unparalleled elsewhere in the world. The first Czechoslovak president T. G. Masaryk invited the prominent Slovene architect Jože Plečnik to Prague, where he modernized the Castle and built some other buildings (Church of the Most Sacred Heart of Our Lord). Between World Wars I and II, Functionalism, with its sober, progressive forms, took over as the main architectural style in the newly established Czechoslovak Republic. In the city of Brno, one of the most impressive functionalist works has been preserved – Villa Tugendhat, designed by the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The most significant Czech architects of this era were Adolf Loos, Pavel Janák and Josef Gočár.
After World War II and the Communist coup in 1948, art in Czechoslovakia became strongly Soviet influenced. Hotel International in Prague is a brilliant example of the so-called Socialist realism, the Stalinistic art style of the 1950s. The Czechoslovak avant-garde artistic movement known as the Brussels style (named after the Brussels World's Fair Expo 58) became popular in the time of political liberalization of Czechoslovakia in the 1960s. Brutalism dominated in the 70s and 80s (Kotva Department Store).
Even today, the Czech Republic is not shying away from the most modern trends of international architecture. This fact is attested to by a number of projects by world-renowned architects (Frank Gehry and his Dancing House, Jean Nouvel, Ricardo Bofill, and John Pawson). There are also contemporary Czech architects whose works can be found all over the world (Vlado Milunić, Eva Jiřičná, Jan Kaplický).
In a strict sense, Czech literature is the literature written in the Czech language. A more liberal definition incorporates all literary works written in the Czech lands regardless of language. The literature from the area of today's Czech Republic was mostly written in Czech, but also in Latin and German or even Old Church Slavonic. Thus Franz Kafka, who—while bilingual in Czech and German—wrote his works (The Trial, The Castle) in German, during the era of Austrian rule, can represent the Czech, German or Austrian literature depending on the point of view.
Influential Czech authors who wrote in Latin include Cosmas of Prague († 1125), Martin of Opava († 1278), Peter of Zittau († 1339), John Hus († 1415), Bohuslav Hasištejnský z Lobkovic (1461–1510), Jan Dubravius (1486–1553), Tadeáš Hájek (1525–1600), Johannes Vodnianus Campanus (1572–1622), John Amos Comenius (1592–1670), and Bohuslav Balbín (1621–1688).
In the second half of the 13th century, the royal court in Prague became one of the centers of the German Minnesang and courtly literature (Reinmar von Zweter, Heinrich von Freiberg, Ulrich von Etzenbach, Wenceslaus II of Bohemia). The most famous Czech medieval German-language work is the Ploughman of Bohemia (Der Ackermann aus Böhmen), written around 1401 by Johannes von Tepl. The heyday of Czech German-language literature can be seen in the first half of the 20th century, which is represented by the well-known names of Franz Kafka, Max Brod, Franz Werfel, Rainer Maria Rilke, Karl Kraus, Egon Erwin Kisch, and others.
Bible translations played an important role in the development of Czech literature and the standard Czech language. The oldest Czech translation of the Psalms originated in the late 13th century and the first complete Czech translation of the Bible was finished around 1360. The first complete printed Czech Bible was published in 1488 (Prague Bible). The first complete Czech Bible translation from the original languages was published between 1579 and 1593 and is known as the Bible of Kralice. The Codex Gigas from the 12th century is the largest extant medieval manuscript in the world.
Czech-language literature can be divided into several periods: the Middle Ages (Chronicle of Dalimil); the Hussite period (Tomáš Štítný ze Štítného, Jan Hus, Petr Chelčický); the Renaissance humanism (Henry the Younger of Poděbrady, Luke of Prague, Wenceslaus Hajek, Jan Blahoslav, Daniel Adam z Veleslavína); the Baroque period (John Amos Comenius, Adam Václav Michna z Otradovic, Bedřich Bridel, Jan František Beckovský); the Enlightenment and Czech reawakening in the first half of the 19th century (Václav Matěj Kramerius, Karel Hynek Mácha, Karel Jaromír Erben, Karel Havlíček Borovský, Božena Němcová, Ján Kollár, Josef Kajetán Tyl), modern literature in second half of the 19th century (Jan Neruda, Alois Jirásek, Viktor Dyk, Jaroslav Vrchlický, Svatopluk Čech); the avant-garde of the interwar period (Karel Čapek, Jaroslav Hašek, Vítězslav Nezval, Jaroslav Seifert, Jiří Wolker, Vladimír Holan); the years under Communism and the Prague Spring (Josef Škvorecký, Bohumil Hrabal, Milan Kundera, Arnošt Lustig, Václav Havel, Pavel Kohout, Ivan Klíma); and the literature of the post-Communist Czech Republic (Ivan Martin Jirous, Michal Viewegh, Jáchym Topol, Patrik Ouředník, Kateřina Tučková).
Jaroslav Seifert was the only Czech writer awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The famous antiwar comedy novel The Good Soldier Švejk by Jaroslav Hašek is the most translated Czech book in history. It was adapted by Karel Steklý in two color films The Good Soldier Schweik in 1956 and 1957. Widely translated Czech books are also Milan Kundera's The Unbearable Lightness of Being and Karel Čapek's War with the Newts.
Czech literature and culture played a major role on at least two occasions when Czechs lived under oppression and political activity was suppressed. On both of these occasions, in the early 19th century and then again in the 1960s, the Czechs used their cultural and literary effort to strive for political freedom, establishing a confident, politically aware nation.
The musical tradition of the Czech lands arose from first church hymns, whose first evidence is suggested at the break of 10th and 11th century. The first significant pieces of Czech music include two chorales, which in their time performed the function of anthems: "Hospodine pomiluj ny" (Lord, Have Mercy on Us) from around 1050, unmistakably the oldest and most faithfully preserved popular spiritual song to have survived to the present, and the hymn "Svatý Václave" (Saint Wenceslas) or "Saint Wenceslas Chorale" from around 1250. Its roots can be found in the 12th century and it still belongs to the most popular religious songs to this day. In 1918, in the beginning of the Czechoslovak state, the song was discussed as one of the possible choices for the national anthem. The authorship of the anthem "Lord, Have Mercy on Us" is ascribed by some historians to Saint Adalbert of Prague (sv.Vojtěch), bishop of Prague, living between 956 and 997.
The wealth of musical culture in the Czech Republic lies in the long-term high-culture classical music tradition during all historical periods, especially in the Baroque, Classicism, Romantic, modern classical music and in the traditional folk music of Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia. Since the early eras of artificial music, Czech musicians and composers have often been influenced by genuine folk music (e.g. polka which originated in Bohemia). Among the most notable Czech composers are Adam Michna, Jan Dismas Zelenka, Jan Václav Antonín Stamic, Jiří Antonín Benda, Jan Křtitel Vaňhal, Josef Mysliveček, Heinrich Biber, Antonín Rejcha, František Xaver Richter, František Brixi and Jan Ladislav Dussek in baroque era, Bedřich Smetana and Antonín Dvořák in romanticism, Gustav Mahler, Josef Suk, Leoš Janáček, Bohuslav Martinů, Vítězslav Novák, Zdeněk Fibich, Alois Hába, Viktor Ullmann, Ervín Schulhoff, Pavel Haas, Josef Bohuslav Foerster in modern classical music, Miloslav Kabeláč and Petr Eben in contemporary classical music. Not forgetting the famous musicians, interpreters, conductors, e.g. František Benda, Rafael Kubelík, Jan Kubelík, David Popper, Alice Herz-Sommer, Rudolf Serkin, Heinrich Wilhelm Ernst, Otakar Ševčík, Václav Neumann, Václav Talich, Karel Ančerl, Jiří Bělohlávek, Wojciech Żywny, Emma Destinnová, Magdalena Kožená, Rudolf Firkušný, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Panocha Quartet or non-classical musicians: Julius Fučík (brass band), Karel Svoboda and Erich Wolfgang Korngold (film music), Ralph Benatzky, Rudolf Friml and Oskar Nedbal (operetta), Jan Hammer and Karel Gott (pop), Jaroslav Ježek and Miroslav Vitouš (jazz), Karel Kryl (folk).
Czech music can be considered to have been beneficial in both the European and worldwide context, several times co-determined or even determined a newly arriving era in musical art, above all of Classical era, as well as by original attitudes in Baroque, Romantic and modern classical music. The most famous Czech musical works are Smetana’s The Bartered Bride and Má vlast, Dvořák’s New World Symphony, Rusalka and Slavonic Dances or Janáček’s Jenůfa.
The most famous music festival in the country is Prague Spring International Music Festival of classical music, a permanent showcase for outstanding performing artists, symphony orchestras and chamber music ensembles of the world.
The roots of Czech theatre can be found in the Middle Ages, especially in cultural life of gothic period. In the 19th century, the theatre played an important role in the national awakening movement and later, in the 20th century it became a part of the modern European theatre art. Original Czech cultural phenomenon came into being at the end of the 1950s. This project called Laterna magika (The Magic Lantern) was the brainchild of renowned film and theater director Alfred Radok, resulting in productions that combined theater, dance and film in a poetic manner, considered the first multimedia art project in international context.
The tradition of Czech cinematography started in the second half of the 1890s. Peaks of the production in the era of silent movies include the historical drama The Builder of the Temple and the social and erotic (very controversial and innovative at that time) drama Erotikon directed by Gustav Machatý. The early Czech sound film era was very productive, above all in mainstream genres, especially the comedies of Martin Frič or Karel Lamač. However, dramatic movies were more internationally successful. Among the most successful being the romantic drama Ecstasy by Gustav Machatý and the romantic The River by Josef Rovenský.
After the repressive period of Nazi occupation and early communist official dramaturgy of socialist realism in movies at the turn of the 1940s and 1950s with a few exceptions such as Krakatit by Otakar Vávra or Men without wings by František Čáp (awarded by Palme d'Or of the Cannes Film Festival in 1946), a new era of the Czech film began with outstanding animated films by important filmmakers such as Karel Zeman, a pioneer with special effects (culminating in successful films such as artistically exceptional Vynález zkázy ("A Deadly Invention"), performed in anglophone countries under the name "The Fabulous World of Jules Verne" from 1958, which combined acted drama with animation, and Jiří Trnka, the founder of the modern puppet film. This began a strong tradition of animated films (Zdeněk Miler's Mole etc.). Another Czech cultural phenomenon came into being at the end of the 1950s. This project called Laterna magika ("The Magic Lantern"), resulting in productions that combined theater, dance and film in a poetic manner, considered the first multimedia art project in international context (mentioned also in Theatre section above).
In the 1960s, so called Czech New Wave (also Czechoslovak New Wave) received international acclaim. It is linked with names of Miloš Forman, Věra Chytilová, Jiří Menzel, Ján Kadár, Elmar Klos, Evald Schorm, Vojtěch Jasný, Ivan Passer, Jan Schmidt, Juraj Herz, Juraj Jakubisko, Jan Němec, Jaroslav Papoušek, etc. The hallmark of the films of this movement were long, often improvised dialogues, black and absurd humor and the occupation of non-actors. Directors are trying to preserve natural atmosphere without refinement and artificial arrangement of scenes. The unique personality of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s with original manuscript, deep psychological impact and extraordinarily high quality art is the director František Vláčil. His films Marketa Lazarová, Údolí včel ("The Valley of The Bees") or Adelheid belong to the artistic peaks of Czech cinema production. The film "Marketa Lazarová" was voted the all-time best Czech movie in a prestigious 1998 poll of Czech film critics and publicists. Another internationally well-known author is Jan Švankmajer (in the beginning of the career conjoined with above mentioned project "Laterna Magika"), a filmmaker and artist whose work spans several media. He is a self-labeled surrealist known for his animations and features, which have greatly influenced many artists worldwide.
Kadár & Klos's The Shop on Main Street (1965), Menzel's Closely Watched Trains (1967) and Jan Svěrák's Kolya (1996) won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film while six others earned a nomination: Loves of a Blonde (1966), The Fireman's Ball (1968), My Sweet Little Village (1986), The Elementary School (1991), Divided We Fall (2000) and Želary (2003).
The Czech Lion is the highest Czech award for film achievement. Herbert Lom, Karel Roden and Libuše Šafránková (known from Christmas classic Three Nuts for Cinderella, especially popular in Norway) among the best known Czech actors.
The Barrandov Studios in Prague are the largest film studios in country and one of the largest in Europe with many many popular film locations in the country. Filmmakers have come to Prague to shoot scenery no longer found in Berlin, Paris and Vienna. The city of Karlovy Vary was used as a location for the 2006 James Bond film Casino Royale.
Karlovy Vary International Film Festival is one of the oldest in the world and has become Central and Eastern Europe's leading film event. It is also one of few film festivals have been given competitive status by the FIAPF. Other film festivals held in the country include Febiofest, Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival, One World Film Festival, Zlín Film Festival and Fresh Film Festival.
Since the Czech Republic is a democratic republic, journalists and media enjoy a great degree of freedom. There are restrictions only against writing in support of Nazism, racism or violating Czech law. The country was ranked as the 13th most free press in the World Freedom Index by Reporters Without Borders in 2014. American Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has its headquarters in Prague.
The most watched main news program is TV Nova. The most trusted news webpage in the Czech Republic is ct24.cz, which owns Czech Television – the only national public television service – and its 24-hour news channel ČT24. Other public services are Czech Radio and the Czech News Agency (ČTK). Privately owned television services such as TV Nova, TV Prima and TV Barrandov are also very popular, with TV Nova being the most popular channel in the Czech Republic.
Newspapers are quite popular in the Czech Republic. The best-selling daily national newspapers are Blesk (average 1.15M daily readers), Mladá fronta DNES (average 752,000 daily readers), Právo (average 260,00 daily readers) and Deník (average 72,000 daily readers).
The Czech Republic is home to several globally successful video game developers, including Illusion Softworks (2K Czech), Bohemia Interactive, Keen Software House, Amanita Design and Madfinger Games. The Czech video game development scene has a long history, and a number of Czech games were produced for the ZX Spectrum, PMD 85 and Atari systems in the 1980s. In the early 2000s, a number of Czech games achieved international acclaim, including Hidden & Dangerous, Operation Flashpoint, Vietcong and Mafia. Today, the most globally successful Czech games include ARMA, DayZ, Space Engineers, Machinarium, Euro Truck Simulator, American Truck Simulator, Silent Hill: Downpour, 18 Wheels of Steel, Bus Driver, Shadowgun and Blackhole. The Czech Game of the Year Awards are held annually to recognize accomplishments in video game development.
Czech cuisine is marked by a strong emphasis on meat dishes. Pork is quite common; beef and chicken are also popular. Goose, duck, rabbit and wild game are served. Fish is rare, with the occasional exception of fresh trout and carp, which is served at Christmas.
Czech beer has a long and important history. The first brewery is known to have existed in 993 and the Czech Republic has the highest beer consumption per capita in the world. The famous "pilsner style beer" (pils) originated in the western Bohemian city of Plzeň, where the world's first-ever blond lager Pilsner Urquell is still being produced, making it the inspiration for more than two-thirds of the beer produced in the world today. Further south the town of České Budějovice, known as Budweis in German, lent its name to its beer, eventually known as Budweiser Budvar. Apart from these and other major brands, the Czech Republic also boasts a growing number of top quality small breweries and mini-breweries seeking to continue the age-old tradition of quality and taste, whose output matches the best in the world.
Tourism is slowly growing around the Southern Moravian region too, which has been producing wine since the Middle Ages; about 94% of vineyards in the Czech Republic are Moravian. Aside from slivovitz, Czech beer and wine, the Czechs also produce two unique liquors, Fernet Stock and Becherovka. Kofola is a non-alcoholic domestic cola soft drink which competes with Coca-Cola and Pepsi in popularity.
Some popular Czech dishes include:
- Vepřo knedlo zelo: roast pork with bread dumplings and stewed cabbage
- Svíčková na smetaně: roast sirloin of beef with steamed dumplings and cream of vegetable sauce
- Rajská (omáčka): beef in tomato sauce, traditionally served with dumplings
- Koprová: beef in dill sauce, traditionally served with dumplings
- Pečená kachna: roast duck with bread or potato dumplings and braised red cabbage
- Guláš: a variety of beef and pork goulash stews, served with dumplings or bread
- Smažený sýr: fried cheese, typically served with potatoes or french fries and tartar sauce
- Bramboráky: potato pancakes, traditionally served with sour cabbage
There is also a large variety of local sausages, wurst, pâtés, and smoked and cured meats. Czech desserts include a wide variety of whipped cream, chocolate, and fruit pastries and tarts, crêpes, creme desserts and cheese, poppy-seed-filled and other types of traditional cakes such as buchty, koláče and štrúdl.
Sports play a part in the life of many Czechs, who are generally loyal supporters of their favorite teams or individuals. The two leading sports in the Czech Republic are ice hockey and football. Tennis is also a very popular sport in the Czech Republic. The many other sports with professional leagues and structures include basketball, volleyball, team handball, track and field athletics and floorball.
The country has won 14 gold medals in summer (plus 49 as Czechoslovakia) and five gold medals (plus two as Czechoslovakia) in winter Olympic history. Famous Olympians are Věra Čáslavská, Emil Zátopek, Jan Železný, Barbora Špotáková, Martina Sáblíková, Martin Doktor, Štěpánka Hilgertová or Kateřina Neumannová. Sports legends are also runner Jarmila Kratochvílová or chess-player Wilhelm Steinitz.
Czech hockey school has good reputation. The Czech ice hockey team won the gold medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics and has won twelve gold medals at the World Championships (including 6 as Czechoslovakia), including three straight from 1999 to 2001. The most famous hockey players of all time belongs Jaromír Jágr and Dominik Hašek.
The Czechoslovakia national football team was a consistent performer on the international scene, with eight appearances in the FIFA World Cup Finals, finishing in second place in 1934 and 1962. The team also won the European Football Championship in 1976, came in third in 1980 and won the Olympic gold in 1980. After dissolution of Czechoslovakia, the Czech national football team finished in second (1996) and third (2004) place at the European Football Championship. The most famous Czech footballers were Oldřich Nejedlý, Antonín Puč, František Plánička, Josef Bican, Josef Masopust (Ballon d'or 1962), Ladislav Novák, Svatopluk Pluskal, Antonín Panenka, Ivo Viktor, Pavel Nedvěd (Ballon d'or 2003), Karel Poborský, Vladimír Šmicer, Jan Koller, Milan Baroš, Marek Jankulovski, Tomáš Rosický and Petr Čech.
The Czech Republic also has great influence in tennis, with such players as Tomáš Berdych, Jan Kodeš, Jaroslav Drobný, Hana Mandlíková, Wimbledon Women's Singles winners Petra Kvitová and Jana Novotná, 8-time Grand Slam singles champion Ivan Lendl, and 18-time Grand Slam champion Martina Navratilova.
The Czech Republic men's national volleyball team winner silver medal 1964 Summer Olympics and two gold medalist in FIVB Volleyball World Championship 1956, 1966. Czech Republic women's national basketball team win EuroBasket 2005 Women. Czechoslovakia national basketball team win EuroBasket 1946.
Sport is a source of strong waves of patriotism, usually rising several days or weeks before an event. The events considered the most important by Czech fans are: the Ice Hockey World Championships, Olympic Ice hockey tournament, UEFA European Football Championship, UEFA Champions League, FIFA World Cup and qualification matches for such events. In general, any international match of the Czech ice hockey or football national team draws attention, especially when played against a traditional rival.
One of the most popular Czech sports is hiking, mainly in the Czech mountains. The word for "tourist" in the Czech language, turista, also means "trekker" or "hiker". For beginners, thanks to the more than 120-year-old tradition, there is a unique system of waymarking, one of the best in Europe. There is a network of around 40,000 km of marked short- and long-distance trails crossing the whole country and all the Czech mountains.
The most significant sports venues are Eden Arena (e.g. 2013 UEFA Super Cup, 2015 UEFA European Under-21 Championship; home venue of SK Slavia Prague), O2 Arena (2015 European Athletics Indoor Championships, 2015 IIHF World Championship; home venue of HC Sparta Prague), Generali Arena (home venue of AC Sparta Prague), Masaryk Circuit (annual Czech Republic motorcycle Grand Prix), Strahov Stadium (mass games of Sokol and Spartakiades in communist era), Tipsport Arena (1964 World Men's Handball Championship, EuroBasket 1981, 1990 World Men's Handball Championship; home venue of ex-KHL's HC Lev Praha) and Stadion Evžena Rošického (1978 European Athletics Championships).
- "Czech language". Czech Republic – Official website. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 14 November 2011.
- Citizens belonging to minorities, which traditionally and on a long-term basis live within the territory of the Czech Republic, enjoy the right to use their language in communication with authorities and in courts of law (for the list of recognized minorities see National Minorities Policy of the Government of the Czech Republic, Belorussian and Vietnamese since 4 July 2013, see Česko má nové oficiální národnostní menšiny. Vietnamce a Bělorusy). Article 25 of the Czech Charter of Fundamental Rights and Basic Freedoms ensures the right of the national and ethnic minorities to education and communication with the authorities in their own language. Act No. 500/2004 Coll. (The Administrative Rule) in its paragraph 16 (4) (Procedural Language) ensures that a citizen of the Czech Republic who belongs to a national or an ethnic minority, which traditionally and on a long-term basis lives within the territory of the Czech Republic, has the right to address an administrative agency and proceed before it in the language of the minority. If the administrative agency has no employee with knowledge of the language, the agency is bound to obtain a translator at the agency's own expense. According to Act No. 273/2001 (Concerning the Rights of Members of Minorities) paragraph 9 (The right to use language of a national minority in dealing with authorities and in front of the courts of law) the same also applies to members of national minorities in the courts of law.
- The Slovak language may be considered an official language in the Czech Republic under certain circumstances, as defined by several laws – e.g. law 500/2004, 337/1992. Source: http://portal.gov.cz. Cited: "Například Správní řád (zákon č. 500/2004 Sb.) stanovuje: "V řízení se jedná a písemnosti se vyhotovují v českém jazyce. Účastníci řízení mohou jednat a písemnosti mohou být předkládány i v jazyce slovenském ..." (§16, odstavec 1). Zákon o správě daní a poplatků (337/1992 Sb.) "Úřední jazyk: Před správcem daně se jedná v jazyce českém nebo slovenském. Veškerá písemná podání se předkládají v češtině nebo slovenštině ..." (§ 3, odstavec 1). http://portal.gov.cz
- "Czech Republic Population 2014". World Population Review. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Census of Population and Housing 2011: Basic final results. Czech Statistical Office Archived 29 January 2011 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved on 19 December 2012.
- "Czech Republic". International Monetary Fund. Retrieved 8 May 2017.
- "Gini coefficient of equivalised disposable income (source: SILC)". Eurostat Data Explorer. Archived from the original on 16 April 2010. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
- "2016 Human Development Report" (PDF). United Nations Development Programme. 2016. Retrieved 23 March 2017.
- "Oxford English Dictionary". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Europa > Publications Office > Style guide > III. Common conventions > 7. Countries, languages, currencies: 7.1. Countries – 7.1.1 Designations and abbreviations to use – Member States: Short name, in source language(s) (geographical name) (The short name in the source language(s) is used to fix the protocol order and is used in multilingual documents): Česká republika, Official name, in source language(s) (protocol name): Česká republika, Short name in English (geographical name): Czech Republic, Official name in English (protocol name): Czech Republic, Country code: CZ".
- "the Czech Republic". The United Nations Terminology Database. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
- "Information about the Czech Republic". Czech Foreign Ministry.
- There is no distinction in the Czech language between adjectives referring to Bohemia and to the Czech Republic; i.e. český means both Bohemian and Czech.
- Mlsna, Petr; Šlehofer, F.; Urban, D. (2010). "The Path of Czech Constitutionality" (PDF). 1st edition (in Czech and English). Praha: Úřad Vlády České Republiky (The Office of the Government of the Czech Republic). pp. 10–11. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
- Čumlivski, Denko (2012). "800 let Zlaté buly sicilské" (in Czech). National Archives of the Czech Republic (Národní Archiv České Republiky). Archived from the original on 28 November 2012. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
- Velinger, Jan (28 February 2006). "World Bank Marks Czech Republic's Graduation to 'Developed' Status". Radio Prague. Retrieved 22 January 2007.
- "Edit/Review Countries". Imf.org. 14 September 2006. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- Country and Lending Groups. World Bank. Accessed on 3 July 2014.
- "World Economic Outlook April 2014" (PDF). International Monetary Fund. April 2014. Retrieved 2 April 2017.
- "Quality of Life Index by Country 2014 Mid Year". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- Social Progress Index
- "2011 Human Development Report" (PDF). Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Unemployment statistics". ec.europa.eu. Eurostat. Retrieved 26 March 2017.
- "Oxford English Dictionary". Askoxford.com. Retrieved 4 March 2011.
- Czech. CollinsDictionary.com. Collins English Dictionary – Complete & Unabridged 11th Edition. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
- Spal, Jaromír. "Původ jména Čech". Naše řeč. Retrieved 10 December 2012.
- Instructions of the Foreign Ministry of the Czech Republic (26 February 1993, ČSN ISO 3166-1; MZV č.j.81.628/98 OKKV, 17 March 1998)
- "Meeting with the members of the Diplomatic Corps". www.hrad.cz. Prague Castle. 29 October 2014. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
- "Short country name "Česko"/"Czechia" to be entered in UN databases". Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. 21 April 2016. Retrieved 2 April 2017.
- "UNTERM: the Czech Republic". unterm.un.org. Retrieved 2 April 2017.
- "Czechia – UNGEGN World Geographical Names". Retrieved 2 April 2017.
- "Czechia". State.gov. Retrieved 10 December 2016.
- "U.S. Embassy in The Czech Republic".
- "Schapiro, Andrew H.".
- http://www.iso.org/iso/home/standards/country_codes.htm /
- "Tjekkiet og Slovakiet ". dsn.dk, Sprognævnet 1992/4. december. Retrieved 11 November 2016. (in Danish)
- Reuter, Mikael (1992): "Mikael Reuter". sprakinstitutet.fi. Retrieved 11 November 2016. (in Swedish)
- "UN Name codes". United Nations name codes.
- Tait, Robert (25 October 2016). "'Nobody calls it Czechia': Czech Republic's new name fails to catch on". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
- "The Czech Republic isn't called the Czech Republic anymore". The Independent. 22 September 2016. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
- Grousset, René (1970). The Empire of the Steppes. Rutgers University Press. p. 266. ISBN 978-0-8135-1304-1.
- Jan Dugosz, Maurice Michael (1997) The Annals of Jan Dlugosz, IM Publications, ISBN 1-901019-00-4
- "The rise and fall of the Przemyslid Dynasty". Archiv.radio.cz. Archived from the original on 17 February 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "Václav II. český král". panovnici.cz.
- "The flowering and the decline of the Czech medieval state". Arts.gla.ac.uk. Archived from the original on 15 August 2011. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "Plague epidemics in Czech countries". E. Strouhal. p.49.
- "Mentor and precursor of the Reformation".
- "Protestantism in Bohemia and Moravia (Czech Republic)". Virtual Museum of Protestantism. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
- Oskar Krejčí, Martin C. Styan, Ústav politických vied SAV. (2005). Geopolitics of the Central European region: the view from Prague and Bratislava. p.293. ISBN 80-224-0852-2
- "RP's History Online – Habsburgs". Archiv.radio.cz. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "History of the Mongols from the 9th to the 19th Century. Part 2. The So-Called Tartars of Russia and Central Asia. Division 1". Henry Hoyle Howorth. p.557. ISBN 1-4021-7772-0
- "The new Cambridge modern history: The ascendancy of France, 1648–88". Francis Ludwig Carsten (1979). p.494. ISBN 0-521-04544-4
- "The Cambridge economic history of Europe: The economic organization of early modern Europe". E. E. Rich, C. H. Wilson, M. M. Postan (1977). p.614. ISBN 0-521-08710-4
- Hlavačka, Milan (2009). "Formování moderního českého národa 1815–1914". Historický obzor (in Czech). 20 (9/10): 195.
- Cole, Laurence; Unowsky, David (eds.). The Limits of Loyalty: Imperial Symbolism, Popular Allegiances, and State Patriotism in the Late Habsburg Monarchy (PDF). New York, Oxford: Berghahn Books. Retrieved 24 May 2015.
- "Radio Praha – zprávy". Retrieved 13 September 2014.[permanent dead link]
- "Tab. 3 Národnost československých státních příslušníků podle žup a zemí k 15.2.1921" (PDF) (in Czech). Czech Statistical Office. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 June 2007. Retrieved 2 June 2007.
- Stephen J. Lee. Aspects of European History 1789-1980. Page 107. Chapter "Austria-Hungary and the successor states". Routledge. Jan 28, 2008.
- "Ekonomika ČSSR v letech padesátých a šedesátých". Blisty.cz. 21 August 1968. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- Gerhard L. Weinberg, The Foreign Policy of Hitler's Germany: Starting World War II, 1937–1939 (Chicago, 1980), pp. 470–481.
- Stephen A. Garrett (1996). "Conscience and power: an examination of dirty hands and political leadership". Palgrave Macmillan. p.60. ISBN 0-312-15908-0
- Snyder, Timothy (2010). Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin. Basic Books. p. 160. ISBN 0465002390
- "A Companion to Russian History". Abbott Gleason (2009). Wiley-Blackwell. p.409. ISBN 1-4051-3560-3
- Gemeinsame Deutsch-Tschechischee Historikerkommission, Stellungnahme der Deutsch-Tschechischen Historikerkommission zu den Vertreibungsverlusten, in: Hoensch, Jörg K. und Hans Lemberg, Begegnung und Konflikt. Schlaglichter auf das Verhältnis von Tschechen, Slowaken und Deutschen 1815 – 1989 Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung 2001, pp. 254–8
- F. Čapka: Dějiny zemí Koruny české v datech. XII. Od lidově demokratického po socialistické Československo – pokračování. Libri.cz (in Czech)
- "Czech schools revisit communism". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Human Development Report 2009" (PDF). UNDP.org. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- R. Tolasz, Climate Atlas of the Czech Republic, Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, Prague, 2007. ISBN 80-244-1626-3, graphs 1.5 and 1.6
- "Czech absolute record temperature registered near Prague". České noviny. ČTK. Retrieved 20 August 2012.
- R. Tolasz, Climate Atlas of the Czech Republic, Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, Prague, 2007. ISBN 80-244-1626-3, graph 2.9.
- "Country Rankings". Yale. 2016. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
- "The Constitution of the Czech Republic – Article 16". Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Klaus signs Czech direct presidential election implementing law". Czech Press Agency. 1 August 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2012.
- "Members of the Government". Government of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Prime Minister". Government of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "The Czech Republic's Membership in International Organizations". United States State Department. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- The Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index 2017. Data accurate as of 1 January 2017.
- "Visa Openness Report 2016" (PDF). World Tourism Organization. Archived from the original (PDF) on 23 January 2016. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- "About the Visegrad Group". Visegrad Group. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Společné prohlášení ke strategickému dialogu mezi Ministerstvem zahraničních věcí České republiky a Ministerstvem zahraničních věcí Spolkové republiky Německo jako novém rámci pro česko-německé vztahy" (PDF). German embassy in the Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Czech Vote Against Palestine: Only European Nation At UN To Vote Against Palestinian State Was Czech Republic". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Czech-U.S. Relations". Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Czechs with few mates". The Economist. 30 August 2007. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Resortní rozpočet". Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "Foreign Operations". Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic. Retrieved 25 March 2016.
- "The death of the districts". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Základní výsledky". Czech Statistical Office. Retrieved 11 August 2015.
- www.mccanndigital.cz. "Getting to know Czech Republic". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "World Bank 2007". Web.worldbank.org. Archived from the original on 24 May 2008. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "GDP per capita in PPS". Eurostat. Retrieved 16 June 2015.
- Stastny, Daniel (2010). "Czech Economists on Economic Policy: A Survey". Econ Journal Watch. 7 (3): 275–287.
- "HN: Foreign firms took CZK 300 billion in profits out of CR last year". Radio Prague. 11 June 2014.
- "Czech Republic to join Schengen". The Prague Post. 13 December 2006. Archived from the original on 25 February 2008. Retrieved 8 October 2007.
- "MIT Observatory of Economic Complexity".
- "These Economies Will Dominate The World in 2050". Business Insider.
- "Czech Koruna Approaches Euro Cap: Intervention Policy Explained". 8 July 2015 – via www.bloomberg.com.
- "Czech Central Bank Zeros In on Ending Koruna Cap in Mid-2017". 29 September 2016 – via www.bloomberg.com.
- "Czech Central Banker Quashes Bets on Earlier Koruna Cap Exit". 13 September 2016 – via www.bloomberg.com.
- "Range of rank on the PISA 2006 science scale" (PDF). OECD.org. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "HDP, národní účty | ČSÚ". www.czso.cz (in Czech). Retrieved 26 March 2017.
- Czech Top 100
- "Transport infrastructure at regional level – Statistics explained". Epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "Railway Network in the Czech Republic". SZDC.cz. Retrieved 9 November 2010.
- (in Czech) Roads and Motorways in the Czech Republic. RSD.cz (2009).
- "Czech Motorways > Homepage". Motorway.cz. 22 December 2015. Retrieved 10 December 2016.
- Lee Taylor (2 May 2012). "'State of the Internet' report reveals the fastest web speeds around the world". news.com.au. Retrieved 2 May 2012.
- "Wi-Fi: Poskytovatelé bezdrátového připojení". internetprovsechny.cz. Archived from the original on 8 March 2008. Retrieved 17 March 2008.
- "Bezdrátové připojení k internetu". bezdratovepripojeni.cz. Retrieved 18 May 2008.
- "Antivirus giant Avast is acquiring rival AVG for $1.3b". TNW. 7 July 2016.
- "Avast not done with deal-making after AVG buy, but no rush". Reuters. 30 September 2016.
- "Ingenious inventions". Archived from the original on 24 March 2009. Retrieved 24 March 2009.. Czech.cz. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- The History of Contact Lenses Archived 29 April 2013 at the Wayback Machine.. Retrieved 3 March 2009.
- Burns, Thorburn (1987). "Aspects of the development of colorimetric analysis and quantitative molecular spectroscopy in the ultraviolet-visible region". In Burgess, C.; Mielenz, K. D. Advances in Standards and Methodology in Spectrophotometry. Burlington: Elsevier Science. p. 1. ISBN 9780444599056.
- "Velikáni české vědy". Retrieved 1 November 2010.
- "Faces of the Presidency". eu2009.cz. EU2009.cz. Retrieved 8 January 2009.
- Bremner, Caroline (2015). "Top 100 City Destinations Ranking". Euromonitor International. Retrieved 9 February 2015.
- "Promotion Strategy of the Czech Republic in 2004–2010". Czech Tourism. Archived from the original on 28 March 2007. Retrieved 19 December 2006.
- "Prague sees significant dip in tourist numbers". Radio.cz. 21 April 2010. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "Prague mayor goes undercover to expose the great taxi rip-off". The Independent. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Tips on Staying Safe in Prague". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Czech Republic – Country Specific Information". Archived from the original on 17 December 2013. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Třetím nejoblíbenějším cílem turistů jsou industriální památky v Ostravě" (in Czech). iDNES.cz. 20 January 2016. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
- "Aquapalace Praha bude největším aquaparkem ve střední Evropě". Konstrukce.cz. Retrieved 27 May 2012.
- První předběžné výsledky Sčítání lidu, domů a bytů 2011: Obyvatelstvo podle národnosti podle krajů Archived 16 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine.. (PDF) . Retrieved on 12 August 2012.
- "The History and Origin of the Roma". Romove.radio.cz. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- Green, Peter S. (5 August 2001). "British Immigration Aides Accused of Bias by Gypsies". New York Times. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- Foreigners by type of residence, sex and citizenship, Czech Statistical Office, 30 September 2013
- "The Holocaust in Bohemia and Moravia". Ushmm.org. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
- "The Virtual Jewish Library". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "PM Fischer visits Israel". Radio Prague. 22 July 2009.
- "The World Factbook – Central Intelligence Agency". Cia.gov. Retrieved 10 December 2016.
- "The World Factbook". Cia.gov. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "Press: Number of foreigners in ČR up ten times since 1989". Prague Monitor. 11 November 2009. Archived 28 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
- O'Connor, Coilin (29 May 2007). "Is the Czech Republic's Vietnamese community finally starting to feel at home?". Czech Radio. Retrieved 1 February 2008.
- "Crisis Strands Vietnamese Workers in a Czech Limbo". Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- ""Foreigners working in the Czech Republic"". Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 3 June 2009.. Ministry of Foreign Affairs. July 2006.
- Czechs and Bohemians Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine.. Encyclopedia of Chicago.
- "Czech and Slovak roots in Vienna". wieninternational.at. Archived from the original on 12 May 2014. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Total ancestry reported". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
- "2011 census" (in Czech). Czech Statistical Office. Retrieved 1 January 2015.
- Nařízení vlády č. 212/1997, kterým se vyhlašuje závazná část územního plánu velkého územního celku Olomoucké aglomerace
- Územní plán velkého územního celku ČESKOBUDĚJOVICKÉ SÍDELNÍ AGLOMERACE, 
- "Population by religious belief and by municipality size groups" (PDF). Czech Statistical Office. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 February 2015. Retrieved 23 April 2012.
- Richard Felix Staar, Communist regimes in Eastern Europe, Issue 269, p. 90
- The Czechoslovak Hussite Church contains mixed Protestant, Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and national elements. Classifying it as either one is disputable. For more details and dispute about this, see Czechoslovak Hussite Church.
- "Population by denomination and sex: as measured by 1921, 1930, 1950, 1991 and 2001 censuses" (PDF) (in Czech and English). Czech Statistical Office. Retrieved 9 March 2010.
- "Eurobarometer on Biotechnology 2010 – page 381" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 1 February 2013.
- "Eurobarometer on Biotechnology 2010 – page 381" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 December 2010.
- "Discrimination in the EU in 2012" (PDF), Special Eurobarometer, 383, European Union: European Commission, p. 233, 2012, archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2012, retrieved 14 August 2013 The question asked was "Do you consider yourself to be...?" With a card showing: Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant, Other Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu, Atheist, and Non-believer/Agnostic. Space was given for Other (spontaneous) and DK (don't know). Jewish, Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu did not reach the 1% threshold.
- ANALYSIS (10 May 2017). "Religious Belief and National Belonging in Central and Eastern Europe" (PDF). Retrieved 12 May 2017.
- Religious Belief and National Belonging in Central and Eastern Europe: National and religious identities converge in a region once dominated by atheist regimes
- Religious Belief and National Belonging in Central and Eastern Europe: 1. Religious affiliation; Pew Research Center, 10 May 2017
- http://iconics.cehd.umn.edu/OrbisSensualiumPictus/Lecture/default.html Orbis Sensualium Pictus Lecture
- Elena Meschi; Francesco Scervini (10 December 2013). "Expansion of schooling and educational inequality in Europe: the educational Kuznets curve revisited". Oxford Economy Papers. 66 (3): 660–680. doi:10.1093/oep/gpt036. Retrieved 17 September 2015.
- Prague : City Guidebook (1st ed.). Prague: Kartografie. 2000. p. 40. ISBN 80-7011-597-1.
- "History of Czech Architecture". eu2009.cz. Czech Presidency of the European Union. Retrieved 20 July 2015.
- "The History of Architecture". www.czech.cz. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
- Kotalík, Jiří (2002). Architektura barokní (in Czech) (Deset století architektury ed.). Praha: Správa Pražského hradu a DaDa. p. 13. ISBN 80-86161-38-2.
- Hawes 2008, p. 29.
- Sayer 1996, pp. 164–210.
- The chronicles of Beneš Krabice of Veitmil – the hymn "Svatý Václave" mentioned there as old and well-known in the end of the 13th century 
- Dějiny české hudby v obrazech (History of Czech music in pictures); in Czech
- "Czech Music".
- "Gustav Machatý's Erotikon (1929) & Ekstase (1933): Cinema's Earliest Explorations of Women's Sensuality". Open Culture.
- "History of Czech cinematography".
- Solomon, Charles (19 July 1991). "Brooding Cartoons From Jan Svankmajer". LA Times. Retrieved 24 August 2010.
- "KFTV". Wilmington Publishing and Information Ltd. Retrieved 26 October 2012.
- "Czech Film Commission – Karlovy Vary". Czech Film Commission. Archived from the original on 16 January 2013. Retrieved 26 October 2012.
- "Biggest rises and falls in the 2014 World Press Freedom Index". Reporters Without Borders. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Zpravodajský trojboj: Hvězdná Nova oslabuje, Prima se tahala s Událostmi ČT o druhé místo". Ihned. 27 August 2014.
- "Nejserióznější zpravodajství hledejte na webu ct24.cz". Czech Television. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Čechy nejvíce zajímá bulvár. Nejčtenější v zemi je deník Blesk". Czech News Agency. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Prague's Most Popular Sports". Prague.fm. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "Hiking in the Czech Republic". Expats.
- "Turistické značení KČT". KČT.
- Angi, János (1997). "A nyugati szláv államok [=Western Slavic states]". In Pósán, László; Papp, Imre; Bárány, Attila; Orosz, István; Angi, János. Európa a korai középkorban ["Europe in the Early Middle Ages"]. Multiplex Media – Debrecen University Press. pp. 358–365. ISBN 963-04-9196-6.
- "Czech Republic". The World Factbook. Central Intelligence Agency.
- Czech Republic information from the United States Department of State
- Portals to the World from the United States Library of Congress
- Czech Republic at UCB Libraries GovPubs
- Czech Republic at DMOZ
- Czech Republic profile from the BBC News
- Wikimedia Atlas of the Czech Republic
- Geographic data related to Czech Republic at OpenStreetMap
- Key Development Forecasts for the Czech Republic from International Futures
- Czech Republic
- History of Czech Economic and Political Alignments Viewed as a Transition
- Governmental website
- Presidential website
- Portal of the Public Administration
- Chief of State and Cabinet Members