Spøttrup Castle

Spøttrup, Denmark

Spøttrup Castle is the best preserved medieval castles in Denmark. The first record of the castle dates from 1404 when it was moved to the possession of Viborg bishop. Bishops built the castle in the 1400s and it was restored in 1525. It consisted of square form castle and two surrounding moats with a drawbridge.

Skipper Clement, leader of the peasant rebellion, attacked to the castle during the so-called Count's Feud (civil war 1534-36). After Reformation the Spøttrup was reduced to the Crown until sold to Henrik Below in 1577. Since the 18th century Spøttrup moved to the hands of several families and it slowly decayed. The restoration started in the early 20th century and in 1941 the castle was opened to the public as a museum.

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Details

Founded: 15th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Denmark
Historical period: Kalmar Union (Denmark)

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Giuseppe Mennella (2 years ago)
Small castle, but suggestive for the construction and for the proximity to places of water.
Daniel Roskam (3 years ago)
Nice to see. Not too expensive. Cool activities.
Mathias S (3 years ago)
A beautiful historical place with an eventful history. The tickets for entry are a little bit expensive in my eyes, but maybe this is necessary to retain the castle. For kids it's definitely exciting and who ever is interested in history will also have good time.
Inna Joy (3 years ago)
Love it there. Beautiful scenary and nature. And lots of history within those walls
Anna Travesset (3 years ago)
Lovely old castle. Has a very cute apaotecary garden very nicely plotted, a jousting ring where championships have been held, the building itself is fun to discover. The kitchen has a drain and a well, so basically very convenient for the servants there. Lovely views, nice green space around to take a walk, and the reception building is modern and welcoming. Kids loved it to for them it was mostly about running around the place and finding small staircases and corridors, and outside finding a geocache that is stowed in the garden. Entrance ticket is only needed for going into the castle itself, entering the grounds and gardens is feee.
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Glimmingehus

Glimmingehus is the best preserved medieval stronghold in Scandinavia. It was built 1499-1506, during an era when Scania formed a vital part of Denmark, and contains many defensive arrangements of the era, such as parapets, false doors and dead-end corridors, 'murder-holes' for pouring boiling pitch over the attackers, moats, drawbridges and various other forms of death traps to surprise trespassers and protect the nobles against peasant uprisings. The lower part of the castle's stone walls are 2.4 meters (94 inches) thick and the upper part 1.8 meters (71 inches).

Construction was started in 1499 by the Danish knight Jens Holgersen Ulfstand and stone-cutter-mason and architect Adam van Düren, a North German master who also worked on Lund Cathedral. Construction was completed in 1506.

Ulfstand was a councillor, nobleman and admiral serving under John I of Denmark and many objects have been uncovered during archeological excavations that demonstrate the extravagant lifestyle of the knight's family at Glimmingehus up until Ulfstand's death in 1523. Some of the most expensive objects for sale in Europe during this period, such as Venetian glass, painted glass from the Rhine district and Spanish ceramics have been found here. Evidence of the family's wealth can also be seen inside the stone fortress, where everyday comforts for the knight's family included hot air channels in the walls and bench seats in the window recesses. Although considered comfortable for its period, it has also been argued that Glimmingehus was an expression of "Knighthood nostalgia" and not considered opulent or progressive enough even to the knight's contemporaries and especially not to later generations of the Scanian nobility. Glimmingehus is thought to have served as a residential castle for only a few generations before being transformed into a storage facility for grain.

An order from Charles XI to the administrators of the Swedish dominion of Scania in 1676 to demolish the castle, in order to ensure that it would not fall into the hands of the Danish king during the Scanian War, could not be executed. A first attempt, in which 20 Scanian farmers were ordered to assist, proved unsuccessful. An additional force of 130 men were sent to Glimmingehus to execute the order in a second attempt. However, before they could carry out the order, a Danish-Dutch naval division arrived in Ystad, and the Swedes had to abandon the demolition attempts. Throughout the 18th century the castle was used as deposit for agricultural produce and in 1924 it was donated to the Swedish state. Today it is administered by the Swedish National Heritage Board.

On site there is a museum, medieval kitchen, shop and restaurant and coffee house. During summer time there are several guided tours daily. In local folklore, the castle is described as haunted by multiple ghosts and the tradition of storytelling inspired by the castle is continued in the summer events at the castle called "Strange stories and terrifying tales".