Rank #1: Destination: Houska Castle and the Pit to Hell
Houska Castle is generally known as the most haunted castle in all of Bohemia. A large gash in the limestone rock opened up a "bottomless pit" sometime in the 12th century. A holy chapel was built on the site to cover this "Pit to Hell" and later a castle was constructed to guard against whatever could come out of that hole. Houska Castle welcomes thousands of visitors every year to showcase this structure with a legendary and mysterious past full of paranormal activity.
Jan 29 2014
Rank #2: Episode #28: Klement Gottwald: Stalin's Protege in Power
We examine Czechoslovakia's first Communist President and consistently voted "Worst Czech Leader", Klement Gottwald. What many would call a "true believer" in the socialist construct, Gottwald helped the communist party gain a foot-hold in Czechoslovak politics following World War Two with a political coup backed by Moscow. During this time political rivals were ruined, dissidents were imprisoned in labor camps, and public and secret trials against individuals linked to underground movements were conducted. Gottwald took the actions similar to the pages from Stalin's "playbook". The communists were entrenched in power and the Iron Curtain fell in front of the Czech people. Our spotlight shines upon President Klement Gottwald.
May 18 2014
Rank #3: Episode #26: The Czech Spring Rite of Witch Burning
The Czechs and Moravians usher in the Spring on the last night of April by burning a "straw witch" at a celebration known as Carodejnice. Celebrated throughout many nations in Europe, the burning of the witches is a time to eat, drink, and be merry.....winter is over. We will look at the beginnings of this ancient festival and of the dark history of the "burning times" to provide the full story of this Walpurgis Night.
Apr 22 2014
Rank #4: Episode #25: Czech Easter, Passover, and Ancient Traditions
Springtime has come to the Czech Republic. It is a time of religious observance and ancient Czech traditions. It is not uncommon to see bands of young men stumbling through the town with homemade whips in their hands looking for a young lady to swack. It is also common to see Czechs file into churches and synagogues worshiping with their brothers and sisters in the faith. The Bohemican Podcast ushers in the re-birth of the spring season in all its glory.
Apr 03 2014
Rank #5: Episode #31: Battle of Chlum 1866: The Killing Fields of Koniggratz
The Bohemican Podcast takes to the field of battle for a 2014 re-enactment of the Battle of Chlum. This decisive battle of the Austro-Prussian War took place on July 3, 1866 in the Bohemian fields near Hradec Kralove (Koniggratz). This 19th century “killing field” would see over 40,000 killed, wounded, or captured by battle’s end.
Jul 21 2014
Rank #6: Episode #16: Czech Witches, Dungeons, Vampires, and the Occult
The Czech Republic is a land full of legend and lore. As the days grow short this Fall and the nights last longer, dark stories of witches and vampires seem to creep up among visitors and expats. Halloween is upon us here in Prague and we will examine this recently embraced holiday and the ghost stories that fit the season.
Oct 20 2013
Rank #7: Episode #19: The Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich and the Aftermath
Operation Anthropoid was organized to rid the Czech people of the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, Reinhard Heydrich in May of 1942. The assassination attempt was successful but proved costly. Hitler's retribution was swift and complete as his forces executed those that collaborated with the operation. The small Czech village of Lidice was razed to the ground on June 10, 1942 and soon after several other Czech townships met a similar fate. The assassination of Heydrich is our focus on this episode of the Bohemican Podcast.
Nov 30 2013
Rank #8: Episode #9: The Knights Templar in Prague
The Knights Templar have roots across Europe and here in Bohemia. Before their disbanding and punishment inflicted by the Holy Church, the Knights Templar had a foothold in Prague. On this episode, we will walk through Prague and point out what remains of this order and the legends that refuse to die out.
May 05 2013
Rank #9: Episode #21: Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV of Bohemia
Charles IV ushered in the golden age of Bohemia and left his mark on medieval Europe. He was named Holy Roman Emperor in April of 1355 and he dedicated his life to reform the city of Prague into a shining jewel of Central Europa. Charles IV gave the Bohemian people a sense of importance and worth that helped to solidify him as the most revered leader in Czech history.
Dec 09 2013
Rank #10: Destination: City of Strakonice: Bagpipes, Beer, and Fez Hats
Every two years, the city Strakonice plays host to the International Bagpipe Festival and the Bohemican Podcast gives you a front seat. We will also look into the other aspects of Strakonice that make this town unique. Grab a Dudak pivo, put on your fez hat, and get ready for some bagpipes.
Aug 31 2014
Rank #11: Episode #32: A Tour of Prague Zoo
Lions, tigers, and Medveds! Yep, in this episode the Bohemican Podcast takes you on a tour of the Prague Zoo. Not only will we show you the animals, but we will glance over the history of the park. The Prague Zoo was a sanctuary for at risk animals during bombing raids in World War Two and survived one of the worst floods in European history in 2002. Grabs the kids and let's head to the zoo!
Sep 17 2014
Rank #12: Episode #8: The Czech Viewpoint of Foreigners
The Czech people have been greatly influenced by their European neighbors through the centuries. Many speculate that these influences have colored and shaped their viewpoint on the world around them. Foreign political pressures have, at times, isolated the Czech people from foreign contact and cultural exchange. In the 21st Century, the Czech people continue to struggle with age-old rivalries and exposure to a variety of new challenges on the world stage.
Apr 15 2013
Rank #13: Episode #22: Czech Christmas Traditions
Czechs celebrate their Christmas time traditions with a passion. From St. Nicholas Day through Christmas Eve, Czechs practice age old activities such as waiting for Baby Jesus to deliver the Christmas tree and presents to the unique Christmas dinner of fried carp. Expats may find these traditions strange yet interesting and hard to ignore. Join us in a festive look at Christmas in the Czech Republic. Note: Christmas spoilers are mentioned so make sure the kids are not listening:-)
Dec 17 2013
Rank #14: Czechs and The Great War: Winds of War
On the first episode of our special Bohemican Podcast series called Czechs in the Great War, we will set the table with the numerous events and conditions that led to the outbreak of World War One. The Czech people are caught in the middle of the conflict and have to choose a side. Some stay loyal to the Austrian-Hungarian Empire while others fight alongside the Russians, the British, or in the French Foreign Legion. The winds of war approach and there is no turning back.
Nov 26 2013
Rank #15: Episode #23: Podcast Year in Review
The Bohemican Podcast and the History of Alchemy Podcast reached a milestone of one full year completed. Travis Dow and I want to thank our listeners and fellow podcasters for their feedback to our respective programs. On this edition of the Bohemican Podcast, we will both sum up our shows and memories from the past year and give some insight on what is to come in 2014. We are working on some great stories for the upcoming year. Thank you again for listening!
Mar 02 2014
Rank #16: Destination: Cesky Krumlov
In our first "Destination Special Edition" episode, we will take a tour of beautiful Cesky Krumlov in Southern Bohemia. This UNESCO World Heritage site is a favorite destination for foreign travelers and we will bring you first hand insight to the top spots in this historic town.
Jun 20 2013
Rank #17: Episode #7: Jewish Prague
The history of the Jewish people in Prague is one of triumph and heartbreak, setbacks and survival. Long an integral part of the citizenry of Prague, the Jewish community adapted to various regal mandates and survived horrible medieval pogroms. Rabbi Loew's 16th century leadership and faith inspired succeeding generations and a mythical man of clay was said to protect the innocent of Prague. Throughout the dark days of medieval justice and a 20th century holocaust, the Jews of Prague persevered. Join us for a look into the history of Jewish Prague.
Mar 21 2013
Rank #18: Episode #13: The Life and Death of Jan Hus
Jul 15 2013
Rank #19: Episode #14: Prague Spring and Jan Palach
The late 1960's were a time of social and political upheaval around the world and Prague was no exception. In 1968, the Czechoslovakian people were pushing for more openness with the West and the concept of "Socialism with a face" was in vogue. With the election of reformist Secretary Alexander Dubcek, Moscow had enough and ordered Warsaw Pact forces into Czechoslovakia. All reforms were suspended but the flame of freedom would not perish. The self-immolation of college student Jan Palach in January of 1969 and his death several days later would resonate across the globe.
Aug 04 2013
Rank #20: Episode #66: An Interview with Sam Beckwith of PraguePig.com
Join us for some tea and conversation with writer and satirist Sam Beckwith, the creator of PraguePig.com. His expat viewpoint provides a perfect mirror to all the Czech stories not reported in the mainstream media. Celebrities, traditions, and the obscure are standard fare on the PraguePig. Sounds a bit like our Bohemican podcast :-)
Sep 17 2017