Primate's Palace

The Primate's Palace (Slovak: Primaciálny palác; Hungarian: Prímási palota) is a neo-Classical palace in Bratislava's Old Town. It was built from 1778 to 1781 for Archbishop József Batthyány, after the design of architect Melchior Hefele.

The palace and its most famous chamber, the Hall of Mirrors, have played host to many significant events. Perhaps the most famous of them is the signing of the fourth Peace of Pressburg by Johann I Josef, Prince of Liechtenstein, Ignácz Gyulay and Charles Maurice de Talleyrand in 1805 after the Battle of Austerlitz, which effectively ended the War of the Third Coalition. The opening sessions of the Hungarian Diet, which convened in the University Library, took place here as well. István Széchenyi offered his yearly income to establish here the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Here Ferdinand V of Hungary promoted the first responsible Hungarian government (elsõ felelõs magyar kormány) and signed the April laws, where Lajos Batthyány, Lajos Kossuth, Bertalan Szemere, Ferenc Deák, Pál Esterházy, István Széchenyi, Lázár Mészáros, József Eötvös and Gábor Klauzál Hungarian ministers were also present.


The city purchased the palace in 1903. During reconstruction in 1903, a series of six previously unknown tapestries were found behind a wall, depicting the legend of Hero and Leander and their tragic love. The tapestries were woven in the 1630s at the royal weaving workshop at Mortlake, near London.

According to old Hungarian newspapers, literary lectures and author evenings were arranged in its Hall of Mirrors between the two world wars. Zseni Várnai, Aladár Schöpflin, Zsigmond Móricz, Thomas Mann also took part in these events.

The scholar Paracelsus used to live here briefly and there is a memorial plate commemorating his visit.

Building Activity

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