Charles Bridge had no lighting at the beginning. In the 15th century, a cross was installed on the bridge, under which the so-called eternal light was placed, which can thus be considered the first public lighting on the bridge.
In the middle of the 17th century, statues of saints were placed on the bridge – the first of which was the statue of Jan Nepomucký. The eternal flame of oil lamps was kept near the statues to remind passers-by of them at all times, regardless of the time of day.
In the middle of the 19th century gas lighting was gradually introduced in Prague and in 1847 Charles Bridge was also illuminated with gas. At the end of the 1960s, gas was exchanged for electricity, but later the gas lighting returned. The main reason was that the light of gas lamps has a nicer light color and looks more warm.
There are 46 gas lamps on the bridge and the adjacent Křížovnické Square. They are lit automatically, but during Advent a lamplighter walks across the bridge and back to light the lanterns by hand, using a long pole.
Thanks to its gas lighting, Charles Bridge holds a cute record. It is the only bridge not only in the Czech Republic, but also in the whole world, which is lit by gas lamps.