This street arose along the route which once connected Vyšehrad with the Old Town market and with Prague Castle. The route went through a scarcely populated area known as Mezihrady (Between the Castles), and mostly through a terrain safely distant from the reach of the frequent floods of the Vltava River.
In contrast to the usual straight lines of the street design in the New Town, this street retained the meandering course and width of the original route. The first name of the street was Kovářská (the street of smiths) and later Flašnéřská (the street of tinsmiths), after the predominant profession of its residents.
The current name Spálená (the burnt street), was given after the great fire of 1506 which turned to ashes more than twenty buildings, in spite of the fact that, as a witness had it, even the Jews extinguished the fire, praised by the burghers, and the executioner exercised one of his arts i.e., he exorcised the fire(a quotation from a mediaeval chronicle).
The image of the street was greatly influenced by Baroque, which left its imprint on both new structures and on the remodelled facades of most buildings in the street. Another historically important period was the second half, especially the end, of the 19th century when a great number of the valuable old structures began to be replaced by buildings which were architecturally unremarkable. One of the few positive exceptions to this rule was e.g. the Czech Insurance Company building by O. Polívka.
Finally, the last important change in the image of the street occurred in the 1970s with the construction of a metro station and the erection of the department store Máj in the years 1973-1975 (now Tesco), both in the eastern section of the street, following the demolition of a row of old structures.
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