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The Good Soldier Švejk

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Map of Austria-Hungary in 1914 showing the military districts and Švejk's journey. The entire plot of the novel took place on the territory of the Dual Monarchy.

The Fateful Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk is a novel which contains a wealth of geographical references - either directly through the plot, in dialogues or in the authors own observations. Jaroslav Hašek was himself unusually well travelled and had a photographic memory of geographical (and other) details. It is evident that he put great emphasis on this: 8 of the 27 chapter headlines in The Good Soldier Švejk contain place names.

This web site will in due course contain a full overview of all the geographical references in the novel; from Prague in the introduction to Klimontów in the unfinished Book Four. Countries, cities, towns, villages, mountains, oceans, lakes, rivers, islands, buildings are included. Note that from 14 September 2013, institutions (including pubs) have been moved to the new 'Institutions' page. The list is sorted according to the order in which the names appear through the novel. The chapter headlines are from Zenny Sadlon's recent translation and will in most cases differ from Cecil Parrott's translation from 1973.

The quotes in Czech are copied from the on-line version of The Good Soldier Švejk: provided by Jaroslav Šerák and contain links to the relevant chapter. The toolbar has links for direct access to Wikipedia, Google maps, Google search, and the novel on-line.

The names are coloured according to their role in the novel, illustrated by these examples: Sanok a location where the plot takes place, Dubno mentioned in the narrative, Zagreb part of a dialogue, and Pakoměřice mentioned in an anecdote.

>> Places index of countries, cities, villages, mountains, rivers, bridges ... (591) Show all
>> I. In the rear
>> II. At the front
>> III. The famous thrashing
Index Back Forward I. In the rear Hovudpersonen

8. Švejk as a malingerer

Piešťanynn flag
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Hašek's post-card from Piešťany, 1902

Piešťany is mentioned by doctor Doctor Grünstein when he informs Švejk that healing his rheumatism here at the military hospital here (in Prague) would be much quicker than at Piešťany.


Piešťany is a spa in western Slovakia known for its treatment of rheumatism. Until 1920 it was part of Hungary, like the rest of Slovakia.

Jaroslav Hašek visited the place himself; on 28 September 1902 he sent a post-card from here to his cousin Marie. He visited together with Viktor Janota, Ján Čulen and Štefan Čulen.


In accordance with the place's geographical location infantrymen from Piešťany would usually be assigned to Infanterieregiment Nr. 72 (Pozsony) or Honvédinfanterieregiment Nr. 13 (Pozsony).

Quote(s) from the novel
[I.8] „A celé noci nemůže spát, není-liž pravda? Rheuma je velice nebezpečná, bolestná a těžká nemoc. My už tady máme s rheumatiky dobré zkušenosti. Naprostá dieta a jiný náš způsob léčení se velice dobře osvědčil. Budete zde dřív zdravější než v Píšťanech a mašírovat budete na posice, jen se za vámi zapráší.“

Sources: Radko Pytlík, Václav Menger, Jaroslav Šerák, LA PNP

Also written:Pišťany Hašek Pistyan de Pöstyén hu

Hradčanynn flag
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Hradčany in the background, seen from Staré město

Hradčany is where the plot in this and the next chapter takes place. Švejk is first placed in the sick-bay of Posádková věznice to get a cure for his rheumatism, thereafter locked up in the very prison, suspected of malingering. Švejk also appears in other places at Hardčany: k.u.k. Militärgericht Prag, Vězeňské kaple and probably Vojenská nemocnice Hradčany.


Hradčany is a cadastral district in Prague which includes the castle area. This is where the offices of the president, St. Vitus Cathedral and many other landmarks are located. Hradčany is situated on a hill west of the Vltava and borders Dejvice, Strahov and Malá Strana. In 1914 the district was equivalent to Praha IV.


According to the 1910 census Hradčany had 5,412 inhabitants of which 4,911 (90 per cent) reported Czech as their native language.

Source:Seznam míst v království Českém(1913)

Quote(s) from the novel
[I.8] Konečně poptávkou na policejním ředitelství zjištěno bylo, že to byl Švejk, a dále bylo už lehké pátrat. Baronka von Botzenheim vzala s sebou společnici a komorníka s košem a jeli na Hradčany.

Also written:Hradschin de

Siamnn flag
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Siam is mentioned indirectly through the term Siam elephant, used as a word of abuse against Švejk. See Vojenská nemocnice Hradčany.


Siam is the former name of Thailand or roughly the area that corresponds to the modern state. Siam was never colonised but lost some territory to European imperial powers in the 19th century. The capital was always Bangkok.

The term Siam elephant mostly refers to white (albino) animals that were regarded as holy. It was even on the flag of Siam until 1916. Thus Siam elephant is not an animal breed.

Quote(s) from the novel
[I.8] „Poslušně hlásím, že já vůbec nemyslím.“ „Himmeldonnerwetter,“ hulákal jeden z členů komise, břinkaje šavlí, „tak von vůbec nemyslí. Pročpak, vy jeden siamskej slone, nemyslíte?“


Index Back Forward I. In the rear Hovudpersonen

8. Švejk as a malingerer

© 2009 - 2022 Jomar Hønsi Last updated: 3.10.2022