/ / Stahleck castle: photos, description (Burg Stahleck)

Stahleck castle: photos, description (Burg Stahleck)

Stahleck castle is one of castles of the middle Rhine valley, located in the Federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate. Standing on the cliff the castle stands 160 metres above the town of Bacharach and is located 50 kilometers from Koblenz. The castle was completely destroyed and rebuilt in the early XX century in accordance with the plans of the XVII century.

The castle's name means "impregnable castle on a cliff". The castle was partially surrounded by a water-filled ditch that I met in Germany is quite rare. Stahleck for a long time served as the residence of pfaltzgraff Rhine and the archbishops of Cologne.

The Bacharach belonged to the archbishops of Cologne even with 1000 years, then the first fortified settlements on the site of the castle Stahleck. The castle was built in 1135. The first owner of the castle was Goswin von Stahleck, son, which thanks to the successful marriage with the daughter of the German king became in 1140 the count Palatine of the Rhine. Since the city of Bacharach and stahleck castle became an important strategic and commercial centre of the Rhineland. The castle served also as a customs post.

In 1156 pfaltzgraft Hock by order of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa passed to his half-brother Conrad of the Swabian. The lack of successors in the male line caused a conflict between the official owner of the castle - Archbishop of Cologne and pfalzgrafen Rynskie, changed the order of succession in their favor. In 1222 held a dynastic marriage, uniting the two lines of succession, and the conflict was finally settled.

In the first half of the XIII century, the count Palatine of the Rhine Louis I moved his residence in Heidelberg. However, even ceasing to be the administrative centre of the Palatinate, stahleck castle has not lost its positions. In XIV-XV centuries, the castle has repeatedly held gala dinners and receptions, especially the marriage of Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV. But by the end of the XV century stahleck castle was left without an official owner and fell into disrepair.

Despite the development of artillery and the addition to the castle, gun battery, stahleck castle was badly damaged during the Thirty years war. After the war, in 1666, the castle was restored, but soon began a war of the Palatinate succession, and the castle was finally destroyed. The castle was in ruins a little less than 200 years, until they were acquired in 1826, the future king of Prussia Frederick Wilhelm IV.

The crown Prince had intended to give the castle to his wife, née Princess Wittelsbachs, and hence caused the ruins. In connection with the development of the style of historical romanticism, which belonged to the castle Stahleck, it has become very popular among tourists, especially artists.

Another reconstruction of the castle began in 1909, but was interrupted by the First world war. In 1925 it was decided to convert the castle Stahleck youth hostel. The building was built in such a way that they resembled old half-timbered houses. New buildings are made with the exact proportions inherent in the original castle of the times of 1646. During the Second world war, the castle housed a military hospital and later a military camp. But from 1947 to the present stahleck castle functions as a popular youth hostel.

To visit is open only to the courtyard of the castle Stahleck, which is an observation deck with views of the Rhine and the Loreley rock.

Since 2002, all the castles of the upper Middle Rhine valley was included in the list of monuments of cultural heritage of UNESCO.