Fredriksvern or Stavern has probably been a harbor since ancient times. The name is found in written sources the 11th century and in the 12th century it is referred to as a good fishing harbor. The military activities in Stavern began with building of Staverns Fortress, part of a major construction of Norwegian Fortresses which took place from 1675 to 1679 under Christian IV. Citadellet Fort was built in the 1680s by count Fredrik Gyldenløve and had an important role during the last Nordic war from 1709 to 1720.
During the winter of 1748-1749 Fredrik V ordered construction of a shipyard and a drydock in Norway and in 1750 the first Norwegian naval command base was constructed. The king did so as a defensive measure in the event of a war with Sweden. A naval station in Norway could support land strength in the event of a Swedish invasion by cutting off naval transport of Swedish troops and supplies, reducing the risk of such an invasion. Fredriksværns Værft (the shipyard) was finished in 1750 and a number of vessels were built there, including a frigate in 1775. Fredriksvern Church was finished in 1756 as the garrison church in a style with influences from both Renaissance and Baroque.
The main base for the Common Fleet was at Copenhagen, but when Norway and Denmark split in 1814 Fredriksvern became the main base for the Royal Norwegian Navy. The Common fleet had been decimated by the British robbery in 1807 and the Norwegians got the lesser share of what was left when the union was ended. It soon became apparent that major expansion of the navy had to take place. Fredriksvern had one strategic flaw, it was difficult to defend from a land based attack. In addition its capacity was too small for the new expanded navy. Already in 1815 it was decided to look for a new location for the main naval base. But Norway was extremely poor and both the fleet expansion and the building of the new base was delayed. During the 1830s a new main naval base was constructed at Horten, but Fredriksvern continued to be an important naval base and remained active as an air force academy until 2002.References:
Czocha Castle is located on the Lake Leśnia, what is now the Polish part of Upper Lusatia. Czocha castle was built on gneiss rock, and its oldest part is the keep, to which housing structures were later added.
Czocha Castle began as a stronghold, on the Czech-Lusatian border. Its construction was ordered by Wenceslaus I of Bohemia, in the middle of the 13th century (1241–1247). In 1253 castle was handed over to Konrad von Wallhausen, Bishop of Meissen. In 1319 the complex became part of the dukedom of Henry I of Jawor, and after his death, it was taken over by another Silesian prince, Bolko II the Small, and his wife Agnieszka. Origin of the stone castle dates back to 1329.
In the mid-14th century, Czocha Castle was annexed by Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia. Then, between 1389 and 1453, it belonged to the noble families of von Dohn and von Kluks. Reinforced, the complex was besieged by the Hussites in the early 15th century, who captured it in 1427, and remained in the castle for unknown time (see Hussite Wars). In 1453, the castle was purchased by the family of von Nostitz, who owned it for 250 years, making several changes through remodelling projects in 1525 and 1611. Czocha's walls were strengthened and reinforced, which thwarted a Swedish siege of the complex during the Thirty Years War. In 1703, the castle was purchased by Jan Hartwig von Uechtritz, influential courtier of Augustus II the Strong. On August 17, 1793, the whole complex burned in a fire.
In 1909, Czocha was bought by a cigar manufacturer from Dresden, Ernst Gutschow, who ordered major remodelling, carried out by Berlin architect Bodo Ebhardt, based on a 1703 painting of the castle. Gutschow, who was close to the Russian Imperial Court and hosted several White emigres in Czocha, lived in the castle until March 1945. Upon leaving, he packed up the most valuable possessions and moved them out.
After World War II, the castle was ransacked several times, both by soldiers of the Red Army, and Polish thieves, who came to the so-called Recovered Territories from central and eastern part of the country. Pieces of furniture and other goods were stolen, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the castle was home to refugees from Greece. In 1952, Czocha was taken over by the Polish Army. Used as a military vacation resort, it was erased from official maps. The castle has been open to the public since September 1996 as a hotel and conference centre. The complex was featured in several movies and television series. Recently, the castle has been used as the setting of the College of Wizardry, a live action role-playing game (LARP) that takes place in their own universe and can be compared to Harry Potter.