September 29, 2012


Olavinlinna (Swedish: "Olofsborg") or St. Olaf's Castle is a 15th century castle located on a rocky island between the lakes Haapavesi and Pihlajavesi connected to the Bay of Lake Saimaa in northern Finland in Savonlinna Provincial Cham.
Attribution: MiracetiLicense
 Construction of the castle was begun in 1475 by the Danish Knight Erik Axelsson Tott, who had engaged in strengthening the Vyborg Castle. Erik Axelsson Tott decided that the powerful fortification should be build to protect the strategically important Savo region. The castle was supposed to repel Russian attacks from the east and to guarantee the control of the Savo region for the Swedish Crown. Initially, the castle was named  Nyslott (Swedish: New Castle), then it was named Olavinlinna, Castle of St. Olaf, in honor of the Catholic saint of the 11th century, especially in Scandinavia revered as the patron saint of the Knights.

September 27, 2012

Castel Nuovo

Castel Nuovo (Italian: "New Castle") is a medieval castle in the city of Naples, southern Italy. The castle is also known as Maschio Angioino, named to honor King Charles I of Anjou (Charles I of Naples), by order of which it was built.
Before the accession of Charles I of Anjou to the throne in 1266, the capital of the Kingdom of Naples was Palermo. But there was a royal residence in Naples called Castel Capuano. However, when the capital was moved to Naples, Charles of Anjou ordered the construction of a new castle, not far from the sea, built to house the court. The work, carried out by French architects Pierre de Chaulnes and Stone Angincour began in 1279 and was completed three years later in 1282. From the very beginning it was called "Castrum Novum" to distinguish it from the older castles dell'Ovo and Capuano.

September 23, 2012

Caernarfon Castle

Caernarfon Castle is one of the most impressive castles of King Edward I of England. The castle is located in the town of Caernarfon in Gwynedd, north-west Wales. It is surrounded by the waters of Menai Strait, which separates the island  Anglesey from North Wales.
This is a file from the Wikimedia Commons, Author: Herbert Ortner,  License
The first fortifications at Caernarfon were built by the Romans. Their military settlement (Castrum), which they called Segontsy, located on the outskirts of modern Carnarvon. Settlement was by the River Seiont, which flows into the Strait of Menai. The city's name is derived from the Carnarvon Roman settlement. Welsh town was known as «y gaer yn Arfon», which means "the stronghold in the land over against Môn"; Môn is the Welsh name of the island of Anglesey. Little is known about the fate of Segontium and its associated civilian settlement after the Romans departed from Britain in the early 5th century.

September 13, 2012

Hunyad Castle

The Hunyad Castle or Castelul Corvinilor is the family nest of the feudal house Hunyadi on a rock above the small river Zlaşti in southern Transylvania, in the modern Romanian city of Hunedoara.

Attribution: Koponya25, License
Name:   Hunyad Castle or  
              Castelul Corvinilor

Country:         Romania

City:                Hunedoara

Style:   Gothic-Renaissance castle

Renaissance Material: Brick 

Construction: 1307-1315

Condition: restored and opened to the public 

Hunyad Castle was built by King Charles I of Hungary, after his visit in Temesvár (Timişoara), Kingdom of Hungary (now Romania), over the site of an older Roman fortification in 1307. The King decided to set up residence there. The building, probably built by Italian builders, was finished in 1315 and in 1316 the King was already established in the new castle, where he lived almost eight years. The last document signed by him in Timisoara dated June 15, 1323. That fortress had an oval shape, and the only defensive tower was located in the north wing, while on the south side of her closed brick wall. 
Attribution: Dasone, License 
In 1409, the castle and the surrounding land were given to John Hunyadi's father, Voyk, by Sigismund, king of Hungary, as severance. As one of the most important properties of John Hunyadi, the castle was transformed during his reign. It became a sumptuous home, not only a strategically enforced point. John Hunyadi implemented two phases of restructuring and expansion of the castle and its surroundings. The first phase took place in 1441-1446.  And during that time it was built seven towers: four round and three triangular. The second stage took place in 1446-1453. During that time, the chapel was laid, as well as it was built the main hall and the south wing with outbuildings.
After John's death, the castle passed to his son Matthias (Matthias Corvinus). Under his order was built loggia in the north wing (also known as the "Loggia Matthias"), completed a chapel and continued work on decoration the castle. By that time castle has become a rare facility in Eastern Europe, combining the elements in its appearance late Gothic and early Renaissance.
Severe destruction of the castle Corwin were caused by a fire in 1854, which effectively destroyed the monument of architecture. Restoration work was carried out about a hundred years. The current castle is the result of a fanciful restoration campaign undertaken after a disastrous fire and many decades of total neglect. It is a large and imposing building with tall, peaked and diversely colored roofs, towers and myriad windows and balconies adorned with stone carvings. The castle fully corresponds to fabulous views of castles. The current look of the castle bears little resemblance to the one that was in the reign of John Hunyadi, however, despite all the changes and reconstruction remained intact the hall of honor "Neboisa", which means "Do not be afraid" in Serbian language. This room is kept the same shape as six centuries ago. 

In the castle yard, near the 15th-century chapel, there is a well 30 meters deep. According to the legend, this fountain was dug by twelve Turkish prisoners to whom liberty was promised if they reached water. After 15 years they succeeded and produced water, but their captors did not keep their promise. They say that after that inscription appeared on the well: "you have water, but not soul".
Hunedoara is a mandatory destination of those who travel Romania on the trail of Count Dracula. It is said that the legendary Vlad III of Wallachia (commonly known as Vlad the Impaler) lived here for a while, and as a prisoner. Because of these links, the Hunyad Castle is sometimes mentioned as a source of inspiration for Bram Stoker's Castle Dracula.
Interiors in its original form to this day have not been preserved, but the castle is a museum, which exhibits a great deal to tell us about medieval life. This are archaeological finds, ancient books, decorative arts and arms. In the halls regularly holds temporary exhibitions and concerts, including early music. In February 2007, Hunyad Castle played host to the British paranormal television program Most Haunted Live! for a three-night live investigation into the spirits reported to be haunting the castle. Results were inconclusive.

In the preparation of this article, were partially used materials of website:,  and

September 10, 2012

Castle of Coca

Castle of Coca or Castillo de Coca is considered to be one of the best castles in Spain. The castle is located in the city of Coca (Roman "Cauca"; birthplace of Roman Emperor Theodosius) in the province of Segovia, which lies in flat and wooded lands of the center of Spain, in the autonomous community of Castile and Leon. 
This is a file from the Wikimedia Commons, Author: Ignacio Cobos Rey, License
It is an excellent example of the Gothic and Mudéjar styles. It's made up of two square baileys separated by a passageway. Both show polygonal towers at the corners. The castle is surrounded by a fortress double wall of width of 2.5 meters with lots of corridors and doors, as well as a deep dry moat. It is considered to be the highest example of brick military architecture with Mudejar filigree work.

September 6, 2012

Muiden Castle

Muiden Castle, also known as Muiderslot, is one of the better known castles in the Netherlands. It is located at the mouth of the river Vecht, some 15 kilometers southeast of Amsterdam, in Muiden, where it flows into what used to be the Zuiderzee. It is a relatively small castle, measuring 32 by 35 metres with brick walls well over 1.5 metres thick. A large moat surrounded the castle.
Author    Edi Weissmann from Amsterdam, Netherlands, License
Name: Muiden Castle

Country: Netherlands
Province: North Holland
City: Muiden

Type: Water castle
Material: Brick 
Start of construction:1370

Condition:  opened to the public

The history of the Muiderslot begins in 1280, when Count Floris V of Holland built a stone castle on this site to control the estuary of the river Vecht into the former Zuidersea. The River Vecht was the trade route to Utrecht, one of the most important trade towns of that age. The castle was used to collect a tribute on the traders. In 1296 Floris was abducted by rebelling noblemen and was held prisoner in Muiden Castle. They fled under the threat of a siege in the direction of Utrecht, taking Floris with them. During their escape they murdered Floris with their swords. Taking into account the death of Count Floris, and the fact that in the castle was not his immediate successor (son of Count Floris was in England), the castle was besieged by Willem van Mechelen, bishop of Utrecht. After seizing the castle he destroyed it.

September 1, 2012


Carcassonne is a fortified French town in the Aude department, of which it is the prefecture, in the former province of Languedoc. It is divided into the fortified Cité de Carcassonne and the more expansive lower city, the ville basse. Carcassone was founded by the Visigoths in the fifth century, though the Romans had fortified the settlement earlier.
Author    Jondu11, License
First signs of settlement in this region have been dated to about 3500 BC, but the hill site of Carsac – a Celtic place-name that has been retained at other sites in the south – became an important trading place in the 6th century BC. The Volcae Tectosages fortified the oppidum.