the Bone Church

Sedlac Ossuary is a small church in Kutna Hora, Czech Republic. It is popularly known as the Bone Church because the bones of forty thousand people have been arranged in decorative displays.

Directions to Sedlec Ossuary

It is located about 1 km from the railway station. When you come out of the station turn right and walk until you reach the main road. Walk along the road until you reach the cathedral sized Church of the Assumption of Our Lady and Saint John the Baptist on the left hand side. Crossing the road and walking along Zammecka Street will bring you to a tourist information center and toilets, located on the left hand side. Continue another 160 meters you will arrive at the Sedlec Ossuary, more commonly known as the Bone Church.

The bones are arranged in various designs, the shape of letters; a goblet; curtains ; a coat of arms and four large bell shaped mounds.

Bone Church
Bell Shaped Mounds

Most date from the 14th and early 15th century. Many were killed by the Black Death (1346 - 1353) and during the Hussite wars (1419 - 34)

History of the Sedlac Ossaury

The church was originally part of a Cistern monastrey founded in 1142. According to legend a monk sent to Jerusalem in 1278 bought back soil from the area where Jesus was cruxified (Golgotha). Golgotha soil mixed with church cemetary soil transformed the cemetary into very desirble place to be buried. Towards the end of the 15th century its area was reduced. Exhumed bones were placed in an ossaury. The bones were originally arranged into pyramids by a partially-blind monk. He supposedly regained his sight on completion of the task. The current decorative arrangements date from the 16th century.