The Plattenburg was first documented in 1319, making it the oldest surviving water castle in northern Germany. Due to its picturesque location in a region of forests and lakeland, the castle was the summer residence of the bishops of Havelberg in the Middle Ages.
In 1548 Plattenburg became the seventh Prignitz district. After the death of the last bishop of Havelberg, Busso II, the Elector of Brandenburg, Joachim II, who had recently converted to the Lutheran Church, had his son Frederick IV elected as Bishop of Havelberg in 1551.
In 1552, the preacher Joachim Ellefeld burned the Wilsnack's holy blood hosts and was incarcerated at the Plattenburg. Elector Joachim II pledged the castle to his chamberlain, Matthias of Saldern. In 1560 he was given the castle and estate (including Wilsnack) as a heritable and personal enfeoffment.
Around 1600 an expansion of the upper castle was carried out in the Late Renaissance style under Burchard von Saldern. In 1631, during the Thirty Years' War, the King of Sweden Gustavus Adolphus issued a writ of protection (Schutzbrief) for the lords of Plattenburg. Some time later taught Burchard von Saldern built a new castle chapel in the bakehouse and brewery. In 1675, Swedish troops laid siege to the castle.
In 1724 the construction of timber-framed wing was carried out. The architect was Johann Jakob Müller from Brunswick. In 1883 the brick tower burned down at temperatures of minus 15°C, but was rebuilt even higher by Siegfried von Saldern.
Between 1925 and 1945 Sieghard von Saldern took over lordship of Plattenburg. In 1940 French prisoners of war were billeted in the chapel wing, part of the castle serving as a military hospital.
After the estate was expropriated by the state from the von Salderns in 1945, refugee families lived in the castle until 1960. In 1969, the keep was converted into a holiday home for the East German Deutsche Reichsbahn, and it was used as such until 1991. That same year, an association was founded to promote and preserve the Plattenburg and restoration began which has continued to the present (2008). In 1995, a memorial stone was erected in front of the varlets' house by the Federation of Expellees to the victims of forced displacement after the Second World War.
Today the Plattenburg is home to museum rooms, the wedding room of the municipality of Plattenburg and has overnight accommodation for around 30 people. The Plattenburg is the last station on the Pilgrim Way from Berlin to Wilsnack to the Church of the Holy Sacrament in Bad Wilsnack.References:
The famous Italian Medici family have given two queens to France: Catherine, the spouse of Henry II, and Marie, widow of Henry IV, who built the current Luxembourg palace. Maria di Medici had never been happy at the Louvre, still semi-medieval, where the fickle king, did not hesitate to receive his mistresses. The death of Henry IV, assassinated in 1610, left the way open for Marie's project. When she became regent, she was able to give special attention to the construction of an imposing modern residence that would be reminiscent of the Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens in Florence, where she grew up. The development of the 25-hectare park, which was to serve as a jewel-case for the palace, began immediately.
The architect, Salomon de Brosse, began the work in 1615. Only 16 years later was the palace was completed. Palace of Luxembourg affords a transition between the Renaissance and the Classical period.
In 1750, the Director of the King's Buildings installed in the wing the first public art-gallery in France, in which French and foreign canvases of the royal collections are shown. The Count of Provence and future Louis XVIII, who was living in Petit Luxembourg, had this gallery closed in 1780: leaving to emigrate, he fled from the palace in June 1791.
During the French Revolution the palace was first abandoned and then moved as a national prison. After that it was the seat of the French Directory, and in 1799, the home of the Sénat conservateur and the first residence of Napoleon Bonaparte, as First Consul of the French Republic. The old apartments of Maria di Medici were altered. The floor, which the 80 senators only occupied in 1804, was built in the middle of the present Conference Hall.
Beginning in 1835 the architect Alphonse de Gisors added a new garden wing parallel to the old corps de logis, replicating the look of the original 17th-century facade so precisely that it is difficult to distinguish at first glance the old from the new. The new senate chamber was located in what would have been the courtyard area in-between.
The new wing included a library (bibliothèque) with a cycle of paintings (1845–1847) by Eugène Delacroix. In the 1850s, at the request of Emperor Napoleon III, Gisors created the highly decorated Salle des Conférences, which influenced the nature of subsequent official interiors of the Second Empire, including those of the Palais Garnier.
During the German occupation of Paris (1940–1944), Hermann Göring took over the palace as the headquarters of the Luftwaffe in France, taking for himself a sumptuous suite of rooms to accommodate his visits to the French capital. Since 1958 the Luxembourg palace has been the seat of the French Senate of the Fifth Republic.