Mladá Boleslav

Mladá Boleslav (Czech pronunciation: [ˈmladaː ˈbolɛslaf]; German: Jungbunzlau) is a statutory city in the Central Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic. It has about 44,000 inhabitants. It lies on the left bank of the Jizera River about 50 kilometres (31 miles) northeast of Prague.

Mladá Boleslav
Aerial view of the historic centre
Aerial view of the historic centre
Flag of Mladá Boleslav
Coat of arms of Mladá Boleslav
Nickname(s): 
City of cars
Mladá Boleslav is located in Czech Republic
Mladá Boleslav
Mladá Boleslav
Location in the Czech Republic
Coordinates: 50°24′45″N 14°54′16″E / 50.41250°N 14.90444°E / 50.41250; 14.90444Coordinates: 50°24′45″N 14°54′16″E / 50.41250°N 14.90444°E / 50.41250; 14.90444
Country Czech Republic
RegionCentral Bohemian
DistrictMladá Boleslav
Founded10th century
Government
 • MayorRaduan Nwelati (ODS)
Area
 • Total28.90 km2 (11.16 sq mi)
Elevation
235 m (771 ft)
Population
 (2021-01-01)[1]
 • Total44,506
 • Density1,500/km2 (4,000/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
293 01
Websitewww.mb-net.cz

Mladá Boleslav is the second most populated city in the region and a major centre of the Czech automotive industry (Škoda Auto) and therefore the Czech industry as a whole. The city name abbreviation MB became eponymous for colloquial naming of Škoda cars (especially in the communist era) as "embé(čko)".

Administrative partsEdit

 
New city hall

Mladá Boleslav is made up of city parts and villages of Mladá Boleslav I (locally called Staré Město, i.e. "Old Town"), Mladá Boleslav II (locally called Nové Město, i.e. "New Town"), Mladá Boleslav III (locally called Podolec), Mladá Boleslav IV (locally called Pták), Bezděčín, Čejetice, Čejetičky, Chrást, Debř, Jemníky, Michalovice, Podchlumí and Podlázky.

EtymologyEdit

Mladá Boleslav was named after its founder, Duke Boleslaus II, who was called "The Young One" to distinguish him from his father. Because there already was a town known as Boleslav near Prague, this new town was called "Město Boleslava Mladého" (The Town of Boleslav the Young), later abbreviated to "Mladá Boleslav" (Young Boleslav) to distinguish it from the older town of Boleslav, which became known in the 15th century as Stará Boleslav (Old Boleslav).[2]

HistoryEdit

 
Castle in Mladá Boleslav

In the second half of the 10th century a gord was founded by Duke Boleslaus II on a promontory, in the area of today's historic centre. The first verified written mention of the gord is from 1130, when it was also called "New Boleslav" for the first time.[3] Probably in the 11th century a settlement was founded under the promontory, on an important site on the road from Prague to northern Bohemia, Lusatia, and Brandenburg.[3]

A new stone royal castle was built on top of a promontory next to the gord in the half of the 13th century and the gord was abandoned. In 1548 and after a fire in 1555, Renaissance reconstructions were made.[4] In 1600 Mladá Boleslav was promoted to a royal town by Emperor Rudolf II.[2]

In the 16th century the city was a leading centre of the Moravian Church, hosting the Brethren's bishop, a Renaissance church, and a printing house. In 1518, the very first map of Bohemia was printed by Mikuláš Klaudyán in Mladá Boleslav. After the Thirty Years' War in the 17th century, the city's population declined by 40% and the castle was in ruins.[3]

In the beginning of the 18th century the former castle was rebuilt into barracks. During the World War II it was an internment centre of Jews. Since 1972 the castle serves as the Regional Museum and as the seat of the district archive.[4]

In the 19th century new prosperity came: the city became an important regional centre as new schools, theatres, museums and factories (including the automobile factory Laurin & Klement, today Škoda Auto) were founded. Since the 1990s the factory has made it one of the richest and most prosperous Czech cities.

Jewish communityEdit

The first written mention of the presence of Jewish community in Mladá Boleslav is from 1471. In 1634, Jacob Bassevi von Treuenberg, the first ennobled Jew in the Habsburg monarchy, was buried in the Jewish cemetery in Mladá Boleslav.[5]

In the 17th and 18th centuries, Mladá Boleslav (called Bumsla by Jews) was an important Jewish centre.[6] In the 19th century (in fact, the period of decline of the Jewish community), Mladá Boleslav was dubbed "Jerusalem on Jizera".[citation needed]

The synagogue was demolished in 1962.[5]

DemographyEdit

The population rapidly increased between 1960 and 1980 because of the rapid growth of production in the Škoda Auto factory and the construction of housing estates for its employees.

Historical population
YearPop.±%
186911,003—    
188012,249+11.3%
189014,452+18.0%
190017,017+17.7%
191020,640+21.3%
YearPop.±%
192121,425+3.8%
193024,488+14.3%
195023,204−5.2%
196126,021+12.1%
197031,085+19.5%
YearPop.±%
198041,226+32.6%
199143,859+6.4%
200144,255+0.9%
201144,303+0.1%
202144,506+0.5%
Source: Historical lexicon of municipalities of the Czech Republic[7]

EconomyEdit

 
Aerial view of Škoda Auto factory

Mladá Boleslav became an industrial centre already in the 19th century. The main factor of its success was its location next to the Jizera River, which was a water source for newly founded factories. The most significant was the textile industry – its largest representative, the Česana factory, had more than 2,000 employees at the end of the 19th century. Another industry in the Jizera valley included mills, breweries, distillery, soaps and perfumes factory, and production of artificial fertilizers. Most of the factories was gradually shut down during the 20th century, mainly due to World War II and politics of the socialist republic.[8]

In 1895 the predecessor of Škoda Auto, the Laurin & Klement company, was founded, and the automotive industry became the main pillar of the city's economy. In 1925 Laurin & Klement was acquired by Škoda works. During the 20th century many car parts manufacturers were established in the city, including the producer of accumulators for motor vehicles, AKUMA (founded in 1903), now a part of FIAMM company.[9]

Since its inception, Škoda Auto is the most important and most influential industrial company in the Czech Republic. As of 2017, the company had 32 thousand of employees worldwide, out of which 23 thousand worked in Mladá Boleslav.[10]

SightsEdit

 
Old city hall in the historic centre

The historic city centre is well preserved and is protected by law as urban monument zone.

  • Templ Municipal History Museum – a holographic exhibition in gothic town-palace
  • Škoda Museum – car museum
  • Brethren renaissance cathedral – public open gallery
  • Regional Museum – historical, cultural and social history collections
  • Jewish cemetery

SportEdit

The local football team FK Mladá Boleslav has played in the Czech First League since 2004. They were runners-up in 2005–06, have been Czech Cup winners twice (2011 and 2016) and have qualified for the European cups for multiple times.

The local ice hockey team BK Mladá Boleslav was relegated in 2012 from the Czech Extraliga, but quickly returned in 2014.

The city also has one of the Czech Republic's top floorball teams, national champions in the 2017–18 season.

Notable peopleEdit

Twin towns – sister citiesEdit

Mladá Boleslav is twinned with:[11]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Population of Municipalities – 1 January 2021". Czech Statistical Office. 2021-04-30.
  2. ^ a b "Dějiny města automobilů" (in Czech). Statutární město Mladá Boleslav. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  3. ^ a b c "Historie města" (in Czech). Statutární město Mladá Boleslav. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  4. ^ a b "Hrad v Mladé Boleslavi" (in Czech). Hrady.cz. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  5. ^ a b "Židovský hřbitov v Mladé Boleslavi" (in Czech). Město Jičín. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  6. ^ Spector, Shmuel; Wigoder, Geoffrey (2001). "The Encyclopedia of Jewish Life Before and During the Holocaust: K-Sered". NYU Press. p. 832. ISBN 9780814793770.
  7. ^ "Historický lexikon obcí České republiky 1869–2011 – Okres Mladá Boleslav" (in Czech). Czech Statistical Office. 2015-12-21. pp. 11–12.
  8. ^ "Zaniklé mladoboleslavské továrny" (in Czech). Statutární město Mladá Boleslav. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  9. ^ "Sto let mladoboleslavské akumulátorky" (in Czech). ELEKTRO Magazine. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  10. ^ "Škoda Auto hlásí: Rekord. Rekord. A zase rekord" (in Czech). Boleslavský deník. 2018-03-23. Retrieved 2021-01-04.
  11. ^ "Partnerská města: Mladá Boleslav" (in Czech). Statutární město Mladá Boleslav. Retrieved 2019-08-21.

External linksEdit