Fort Nečven is a medieval Croatian fortress from the 14th century, and one of the most important fortified buildings in Croatia in terms of size and degree of preservation.
The fort and its associated yard cover a square kilometer. It used to be surrounded by high walls made of small, poorly assembled stones combined with lime. The northeast courtyard wall was separated by a deep moat and perhaps a moving (lifting) bridge from the remains of the fortress. The walls were over a meter thick. The steep southern walls reached a height of up to 15 metres and consisted of five floors. The northern side, where the five-storey ancient square tower stands, is now filled with rubble.
On the other side of Krka, opposite from Nečven, are remnants of another old Croatian city, Trošenj (Čučevo). Those cities were previously connected by a bridge (which was destroyed in 1647 during the war between Don Stjepan Sorić and Krajišnici) that connected central Dalmatia with Bukovica and Ravni Kotari. The bridge was supervised and travellers who passed the border between Šubić's and Nelipić's properties were charged a toll.
The First Lords of Nečven-Nelipić were at the height of their power after the collapse of Mladen Šubić II (1322 AD) when they were named as the major force in the Southern Croatian region by Prince Nelipac.
The Turks ruled Nečven from 1522 to 1678 or 1686, apart from a period between 1648 and 1670 during which it was given to Venetian vassals Šibenik and Trogir, and burned down at the orders of Leonardo Foscolo, using the established constructions they found and the mighty wooden bridge over the river Krka. In their time there lived: the Dizdars, the Aghas, the Begs and the Kadijas), which showed a great deal how important the fort and the city was because it was in effect the seat for administrative and judicial power in that area for that time.
By the end of the 18th century, the fortress lost its strategic importance, and it was abandoned and the surrounding villages depopulated.References:
The Château d'Olhain is probably the most famous castle of the Artois region. It is located in the middle of a lake which reflects its picturesque towers and curtain walls. It was also a major stronghold for the Artois in medieval times and testimony to the power of the Olhain family, first mentioned from the 12th century.
The existence of the castle was known early in the 13th century, but the present construction is largely the work of Jean de Nielles, who married Marie d’Olhain at the end of the 15th century.
The marriage of Alix Nielles to Jean de Berghes, Grand Veneur de France (master of hounds) to the King, meant the castle passed to this family, who kept it for more than 450 years. Once confiscated by Charles Quint, it suffered during the wars that ravaged the Artois. Besieged in 1641 by the French, it was partly demolished by the Spaniards in 1654, and finally blown-up and taken by the Dutch in 1710. Restored in 1830, it was abandoned after 1870, and sold by the last Prince of Berghes in 1900. There is also evidence that one of the castles occupants was related to Charles de Batz-Castelmore d'Artagnan, the person Alexandre Dumas based his Three Musketeers charictor d'Artagnan on.
During the World War I and World War II, the castle was requisitioned first by French troops, then Canadian and British soldiers. The current owner has restored the castle to its former glory.