Nordborg Castle was, according to Saxo, founded by Svend Grathe under the name Alsborg. Hence, this can be dated to around 1150. Alsborg was built whilst the Wends still dominated the Danish coast; its location a few kilometers inland meant that the castle could not be attacked without warning, and the local population had a better chance of taking refuge there. The first written evidence of Alsborg is from the end of the 12th century. From this it is known that Bishop Valdemar of Slesvig was held prisoner at Alsborg between 1192 and 1197. After Sønderborg Castle was built, Alsborg was renamed Nordborg.
Nordborg was part of the King's properties in the Middle Ages, and was on several occasions a source of income for the king's widow. In 1571 Frederik II’s brother Hans the Younger inherited his mother Dorothea's possessions of Als and Sundeved including Nordborg. Hans was an enterprising man, who in the next 50 years constantly expanded and improved his properties. There was a series of building projects in and around Nordborg Castle. Upon Hans the Younger's death in 1622 his possessions were divided into separate dukedoms, including Nordborg, which went to his son Hans Adolf. Hans Adolf died only two years later and so the dukedom then went to Hans the Younger's other son Frederik.
Nordborg was occupied several times during the Swedish wars, first by the Swedes, then by the Brandenburgian and Polish troops and finally by Swedish troops until peace came in 1660. In 1665 fire broke out in the castle, and it burnt down. Duke Johan Bugislaw went bankrupt and forfeited his estate, which reverted next to August of Plön. In 1678 rebuilding of the castle began, and at this time the ducal coat-of-arms was placed over the castle entrance.
In 1730 Nordborg was taken back into crown possession. Nordborg had an estate of around 400 hectares, but in the following decades the land was turned into farms and in 1766 the castle was sold to a private owner and some of the buildings were demolished and sold for building materials.
In 1909 the castle was purchased by Nordborg town. It was the pro-German Mayor Klinkers' dream to build a high school, which would be a counterweight for the Danish high schools north of the border. The castle was thereafter restored by the architect Eugen Fink, and in 1910 the castle was leased out to the German high school association inNorthern Schleswig. After the reunification in 1920 the castle was bought by the merchant Johan Hansen. He established Nordborg Slot Foundation, which since 1922 has run a Danish boarding school at the castle.References:
The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.
In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.
The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.
A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.