Aleš a Irena Kubicovi
Kamenná Horka 15, Krásná Lípa

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Two villages on top

If one does not know, where to start, it’s best to look into it, what he has on hand. Closest surroundings, which, a sin, quite often we know far less than places hundreds of miles away, even thousands of kilometers. So let’s leave the guesthouse and explore Hely and Kamenná Horka, two villages on a hill.

It’s an early frosty morning in mid-October. The sun is still adorably rolling in the clouds somewhere over the horizon. It’s not that long, what dawned. We are in the pastures, only timidly overgrown with draws and solitary trees. Overripe rubies await, until someone shakes the cumin and collects an apron full of them. There was a time, when apple trees adorned the gardens of homes.
Year, here, on the highland meadows below the dignified Vlčí hora, used to be a village. PLACE. No, more precisely Hölle, i.e. Hell. Garbled to Helly, honored at Hely. And to make it even more complicated, locals preferred to use the name Nassendorf, because it was probably more pleasant to live in the Wet Village, than in hell itself.
Houses stood on this hillside and people lived and worked in them. In the half 17. century, farmers lived in nine homesteads, spinners, linen bleachers. Two hundred years later, the village was annexed to Krásné Buk – almost two hundred souls already lived here. When the thirties of the sick twentieth century were written, there were already twenty-four cottages. But then time broke at the waist and you, whose families have lived here for tens of generations, they had to leave. What was left was a raw and desolate void.
The sixties came and empty decaying houses, which none of the immigrants cared about, tractors and bulldozers were torn down. What remained was a cultural landscape, once and for all touched and shaped by man. But without people.
The sun stretched out and yawned brilliantly. Then it started, just like other days, when the clouds do not obstruct his view, millionaires to discover…
First, the undulating Czechoslovak landscape with curly forests…
…then hills and hills closer and closer…
…and finally a pair of linden trees, with which the creeping meadow peaks.
He has been standing here among the tribes since the beginning 19. century Klingenbeck Cross. A tall wooden cross of deep red color with a painted silhouette of Christ, With the title of Jesus and an angel with a chalice. It was built by noble hunter Johann Georg Klingenbeck from the Doubick hunting lodge, in whose district Hely fell. Why? The post-war development was not very favorable for this jewel of folk architecture, he experienced a kind of miracle here, when he just here, on Peschke field, the shot leg healed. (I steal the photo from the website of Mr. Vladimír Kraus in good faith and thank him for it.)
He supplemented the object of his gratitude to God with a table with an unusually exalted and rather swollen text. In Czech it would sound something like this: “O bitter death! O severe judge! Oh the torment of hell! O light of heaven! Oh eternity! Who overcomes himself and lives godly, he does not sin!”
But so what? This is no longer the austere cross, which stood here until the end of the zero years of the twenty-first century! Sometime around a year 2010 because the original form has been reconstructed, so today our souls warm again when looking at the breathtakingly painted tin silhouettes of the characters. And on top of that, a protective hexagon of pillars connected by a chain.
Masterpiece, and so, after years, the secrets of its interiors were revealed? However, it was also created by the Czechoslovak painter Michal Janovský! That was back in the day, when he worked in the factory and painting was an early evening hobby for him. Today, he is one of the most sought-after and most exhibited contemporary Czech artists, whose courses are lined up in long queues.
So goodbye to the cross, who stood on the route of the pious procession, which every sixth Thursday after Maundy Thursday, namely on the feast of the Ascension of the Lord, passed by, knelt at the cross, sang songs… It’s been a long time. So long ago…
It’s hard to leave here. Then another view of the valley. A picture of a foggy morning. Antoine Watteau? Born, it’s just the genius loci of the ancient Hells.
One house remained after all. The southernmost one, within sight of Kamenná Horka. One only. And in front of him a cross. An unusual and unique cross in this area, or god’s torment. They are columnar, and you won’t find such anywhere else in Krásnolipska.
The names of the four evangelists are carved above the four niches, but their images have been missing for a long time. Richter’s cross. According to, who had it erected. He was most likely a sworn gardener (today we would probably say forensic expert) Johann Christoph Richter, and he did it sometime in the nineties 18. century. Until recently, only the stone part died crookedly. Times are changing after all. The past is no longer indifferent to many of us.
A few more steps and we’ll be back at the starting point. The last look back at the former Hely. Bane, it won’t be the last. I can totally hear you, as you say – we have to look there. Look! And walk along the yellow marker on the hillside below the cross. You will pass meager remains of Hel buildings. If you have anything, smack. In memory of those, who lived their lives here.
It’s still early in the morning. But we have already moved to Kamenná Horka. The Krásnolip basin is full of fog, which the sun tries to burn through with its infinitely powerful halogen. Kamenohorské meadows burn with ice fire.
Then someone in space pulls open the curtain and the Sun Warrior enters the scene in full force. It’s quiet, even the birds were speechless, for the beauty cannot be carried away.
And the sun immediately adorably seeks out and golden caresses the largest stone mountain homestead, Kögler’s house. The end 18. century, a certain Josef Kögler and his family lived here – Attention, not the natural scientist and originator of the educational trail of the same name, which leads only a few tens of meters away, his namesake – so innkeeper, because the house used to be a pub for years.
No, that I’m not lying to you! Solstice Court would perhaps be called today, if she had been she would have survived the war.
Josef Kögler. Initials on the pillars around the gate complete with an optimistic anchor symbol = business success, love and hope. At some point, our dear innkeeper also took on factoring and sold yarn, to which activity he also initiated his son. But something else fascinates us, however it has not been here for over two hundred years. He had a beautiful and unusual cross erected in front of his house. Kögler’s cross.
They are the double torment of God, with a rich tangle of acanthus, rosette and volute, gilded and plated. It is that duality that is very unusual, any detail here has the same back and front, one for the enjoyment of passers-by, the other for the view from the house. Lamps hung from decorative side brackets. On the tin cartouche between Christ and the Virgin Mary there used to be a quote from Luke’s Gospel: Father! Forgive them, because they don’t know, what they do, therefore: Father! Forgive them, for they know not, what does. you say, as possible to this day.
For you to see, that I’m not making it up, here’s the view from the other side, from home. Maybe some of you will say now, that Křivánek is as smart as a radio. I’m not. I just know, where to look. I owe most of the facts in this first Scapular to Natália Belisová and her book Wandering around the spiritual estate of Krásnolipska. There is still somewhere here and there. Buy her. She is wonderful.
Let’s say goodbye to Kögler’s cross with the look of those, who walked here in procession and reverently knelt. It is beautiful and there are not many like it in the Czech Republic, if any at all.
Kamenná Horka was over 18. century twenty-three houses. One hundred years later, almost four hundred people lived here in fifty-one houses. Today? Twenty. And yet it is lively here during the season, because today Kamenná Horka is mainly the area of ​​cottagers. It is a bit of a living open-air museum of stilt houses. I will not offer you photos. I don’t want to disturb the privacy of the owners, maybe they wouldn’t like it. Go here and see for yourself. And stop at some of the viewpoints. For example, on this one, the three highest mountains of the Lusatian Mountains parade in front of you, from the left: Luž, Pěnkavčí vrch and Jedlová

From another you will have a Beautiful Linden, to which today Kamenná Horka belongs, like in the palm of your hand.
And don’t forget to stop at Luční bar! Self-service bar with forge and gallery, a place of peace and relaxation for every passer-by. Utopia, which works.
In the delta under the heel of the cross, the lamb of God is looking at us, and do nothing about it, that the spear of time deprived him of his eyes. He sees us anyway.
You won’t miss Schindler’s cross. It will stop you and make you think. And it’s not important at all, what you believe and what you are sure of. To, what we call today a little inappropriately “sacred monuments”, missing nowadays. We have lost our rituals, ceremony is not worn, there is no time to think and slow down. Someone has stolen an important part of our lives. The ancestors see this and give us a helping hand every now and then. So let’s accept it and just be ourselves for a moment and feel it, what is here and now. (Sorry for the unsolicited advice 🙂, but it was spoken from the bottom of the soul.)
Kamenná Horka and its meadows. One of the first bows of the Lusatian Mountains. remember, that there are nowhere else such wonderful meadows, like right here. And you know what? Let’s take off and follow in their footsteps for a while, who used to change the green to white, as they walked from canvas to canvas with water jugs begging the sun, to whiten, what should be whitewashed. I’ll disconnect here and get back to you in time with another Scapular. And thanks, for the walk together, she was amazing.

Published on: 11.1.2024  -  Filed under: Blog  -  Tagged: , ,