Lunenburg Castle was first mentioned in 1339 and it was probably owned by the Van Zijl family. The tower house itself was first mentioned in 1400. In 1402 it was given as a fief to Ghijsbrecht van Lockhorst.
In 1680 Lunenburg Castle was enlarged with residential wings and stables which were built against the medieval tower house. In 1860 the owner at that time, a member of the Van Swinderen family, rebuilt the castle. The 17th century additions were torn down and that almost the entire moat was filled in. The medieval tower house was then incorporated in a new large mansion which rendered the tower almost invisible. After this the castle was rented out and sold several times.
Between 1925 and 1931 the castle was owned by Mr. Ernest Reinier van Eibergen Santhagens who provided the castle with modern comfort.
On 13 May 1940 Lunenburg Castle was searched by German troops for hidden arms and ammunition, causing much damage in the process. In 1944 the Germans had parked military vehicles under the large trees on the grounds of Lunenburg Castle. This led to a useless bombardement of the castle by Allied forces, because the vehicles had already been removed, which left the castle as an uninhabitable ruin.
Between 1968 and 1970 Lunenburg Castle was rebuilt after its appearance before 1800. This led to the situation we see today. At present the castle is owned by the Fentener van Vlissingen family. The present tower is 15,5 meters high, is almost square with 8,4 by 9,3 meters and has a wall thickness of 1,2 meters.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.