Aizpute castle was built in the 13th and 14th centuries by the Livonian Order. This was regular planned castella type Order’s Castle with corner tower and wooden buildings in the yard. In the 15th century outside at the ring-wall was built the eastern block. After the Livonian War (1558-1583) castle was not suitable for habitation and in written documents from 1555 it is mentioned as a grain storehouse. At the time from end of the 16th till beginning of the 17th century castle was renovated and there still remain the rich parget with the splendid decorative design in the graffiti artistry above the gates that was shaped in that time.
In fights of the Swedish-Polish War (1600-1629) the castle was ravaged again, but in 1665 there were done the renovation works and the garrisons and gun-crews of Jacob the Duke of Courland were deployed there. After the death of Duke Jacob in 1682 castle became the property of Michael Fredrick Nolde. After rebuilding the castle lost its medieval shape of fortress and inside the ring-wall the new living block was added. Gradually the castle lost its adhibition as a dwelling and was inhabited just partly. For that time the culture level in the yard has grown up for 1.5 metres. In the beginning of the 19th century the eastern block and the south-eastern tower got their present flat vaulting and new partition walls. For the beginning of the 20th century the castle of Aizpute was unsuitable for inhabiting and for present day it has partly gone to rack and ruins.
In the beginning of the 19th century, when some parts became unsuitable for inhabiting, the lord of the manor lived in the new manor-house that was built near at the pond in the 2nd half of the 18th century. Later at the pond were built the water mill and the spirit distillery, but at the new manor-house were built the household buildings. Aizpute Evangelic-Lutheran Church and the former castle13-manor complex of buildings creates the unified group of towns-planning architectural objects that also includes the pond and water mill with the dam on the Tebra River.References:
German crusaders known as the Livonian Brothers of the Sword began construction of the Cēsis castle (Wenden) near the hill fort in 1209. When the castle was enlarged and fortified, it served as the residence for the Order's Master from 1237 till 1561, with periodic interruptions. Its ruins are some of the most majestic castle ruins in the Baltic states. Once the most important castle of the Livonian Order, it was the official residence for the masters of the order.
In 1577, during the Livonian War, the garrison destroyed the castle to prevent it from falling into the control of Ivan the Terrible, who was decisively defeated in the Battle of Wenden (1578).
In 1598 it was incorporated into the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and Wenden Voivodship was created here. In 1620 Wenden was conquered by Sweden. It was rebuilt afterwards, but was destroyed again in 1703 during the Great Northern War by the Russian army and left in a ruined state. Already from the end of the 16th century, the premises of the Order's castle were adjusted to the requirements of the Cēsis Castle estate. When in 1777 the Cēsis Castle estate was obtained by Count Carl Sievers, he had his new residence house built on the site of the eastern block of the castle, joining its end wall with the fortification tower.
Since 1949, the Cēsis History Museum has been located in this New Castle of the Cēsis Castle estate. The front yard of the New Castle is enclosed by a granary and a stable-coach house, which now houses the Exhibition Hall of the Museum. Beside the granary there is the oldest brewery in Latvia, Cēsu alus darītava, which was built in 1878 during the later Count Sievers' time, but its origins date back to the period of the Livonian Order. Further on, the Cēsis Castle park is situated, which was laid out in 1812. The park has the romantic characteristic of that time, with its winding footpaths, exotic plants, and the waters of the pond reflecting the castle's ruins. Nowadays also one of the towers is open for tourists.