The Arcades with chapels
The main entrance brings the pilgrim into the arcade courtyard. The signature of F. A. Scheffler (1701-1760) can be found on the fresco of the Annunciation on the vault of the 1st bay of the arcade by the entrance. After 1750 he executed the painting of the entire ground-floor of the courtyard (with the invocations from the Litany of Loreto), including the frescoes on the cupolas of three corner chapels. As they walk along the arcade, the visitors pass the spaces of the Old Treasury, no longer accessible to the public (previously, the Loreto treasure was deposited there).
CHAPEL OF ST ANNE. The second oldest of the corner chapels was constructed in 1687 from the funds of a public collection. The principal altarfrom the end of the 17th century is decorated with a relief of St Anne, the Virgin Mary and Christ Child (a gift from Katharina Polyxena von Lobkowitz). The side altar of St Laurence was raised in 1709 at the expense of Eva Isabelle Förphanová.
CHAPEL OF ST FRANCIS SERAPHINUS. It was built in 1717 at the expense of Princess Eleonore Caroline von Lobkowitz, according to a design by K. Dientzenhofer (1655-1722). The High Baroque carved principal altar, from the sculptural workshop of M. W. Jäckel (1655-1738) has in its centre the superb painting of the Stigmata of St Francis by Petr Brandl (1668-1735).
CHAPEL OF THE HOLY FAMILY (also known as the Chapel of St Joseph). It was founded in 1691 with a financial contribution from Countess Ludmila Eva Frances Kolowrat, née Hýzerlová of Chodů. (The principal altar with the painting of the Family of Christ bears her coat-of-arms.) The side altar of the Capuchin saint, Felix of Cantalicia, is Rococo, provided with high-quality sculptural decoration, clearly made by Richard Prachner (1705-1782).
CHAPEL OF THE HOLY ROOD. It was built in 1691 at the expense of Countess Ludmila Eva Frances Kolowrat. The principal altar from 1692, with the painting of Purgatory, was supplemented in the 1730s by the sculpture of the Crucified Christ. The side altar of the Capuchin martyr St Fidelis of Sigmaringen dates from 1735, like the sculpture of St Dismas. The statue of the Flagellation of Christ is from the 17th century.
CHAPEL OF ST ANTONY OF PADUA. It arose almost at the same time as the chapel opposite (no. 4); the interior decoration of both is stylistically similar: the principal altar (also from Jäckel’s workshop) bears in the centre a painting of St Antony by S. Zeiler from 1713.
THE CHAPEL OF OUR LADY OF SORROWS. The oldest corner chapel of the arcade was built in 1686 at the expense of the Lesser Town councillor F. Windisch for the Gothic Pieta sculpture, donated to the Loreto a year earlier by the burgher V. Rincolini. (According to legend, the sculpture miraculously escaped being burned by the Calvinists.) The Pieta from the beginning of the 15th century is placed on the principal altar that dates from the time of the construction of the chapel. The side altar from the 1730s is consecrated to the alleged martyr, St Wilgefortis (Kümmernis, Starosta in Czech), whose cult was particularly vital in the northern countries.
FOUNTAIN WITH SCULPTURAL GROUP OF THE RESURRECTION. Both fountains arose between 1738-40 in the workshop of J. M. Brüderle (documented 1725-1740); after his death, R. Prachner took over the commission. Today a copy. FOUNTAIN WITH SCULPTURAL GROUP OF THE ASSUMPTION. Today a copy (the originals are deposited in the stone collection of the National Museum, Prague).