Stonemasonry in the Říčany Region – Kaménka, Part 2
The hypothesis about the origin of the foundation stone was confirmed in the records of the former Liechtenstein estate Kostelec nad Černými lesy kept in the state regional archives in Benešov and Brno, and in the period press. The records showed that in a wood called Kamenná leč (Stone Hunt) near Louňovice in the Černokostelecko Region a whitish fine- to medium-grained granite identical to the National Theatre foundation stone was broken off surface boulders in the 1860s (until the beginning of the First Republic). In 1869 a large stone block (which was over 4 m3 in volume and took nine pairs of horses to transport) was broken to be used as an obelisk for Jindřich Fügner’s tombstone in Olšany Cemetery. It was the information about this memorial published in Národní listy (The National Newspaper) on 13 April 1869 and in a publication commemorating 20 years of the Prague Sokol from 1883 which confirmed that the obelisk used to build Fügner’s memorial and the National Theatre foundation stone are of the same type of granite found in the same place in a wood today called Kaménka near Louňovice in the Černokostelecko Region.
In the extensive archive of the Society for the Foundation of the Czech National Theatre kept in the National Museum Theatre Department we found a valuable original inventory of all twenty rocks brought to construction site of the National Theatre from different places across Bohemia and Moravia. Together with the foundation stones from Radhošť (no. 1) and Říp (no. 2), the inventory lists the foundation stone by Mr. Žižka with an inscription Nation to itself 1868. This “Mr. Žižka” was of course the aforementioned stonemason Gabriel Žižka (1833 –1889), the founding member of Beseda Měšťanská (Civic Educational Organization) and Hlahol, one of the first members of Beseda umělecká (Artistic Educational Organization), a founding member and from 1887 also the mayor of Prague Sokol. It comes as no surprise then that in his biography published in Zlatá Praha (Golden Prague) on 13 January 1888 it says that the foundation stone was Žižka’s gift to the National Theatre!
Barbora Dudíková Schulmannová, Vojtěch Janoušek, Tomáš Navrátil, Václav Rybařík and Pavel Vlašímský