Waardenburg Castle dates from the 13th century. Only half of the original building remains: the south wing was destroyed in the Eighty Years’ War and was never rebuilt. Legend has it that the infamous Doctor Faust lived in the castle. At the end of his pact with the devil he was said to have been thrown from the castle tower.
The precise construction date of medieval castles is seldom known yet in this case, Waardenburg is an exception. On 2nd August 1265, Count Otto II of Guelders pledged the manor of Waardenburg to the knight Rudolph de Cock. Knight Rudolph first built a wooden tower, which was soon replaced by a stone tower. His son and grandson turned the keep into a round castle with three connecting wings, a circular wall, towers, fortified bailey and a moat.
According to a legend in the Geldersche Volksalmanak (Gelderland’s Folk almanac) dating from 1842, the infamous Doctor Faust lived in Waardenburg Castle. Faust had made a pact with the devil and in exchange for his soul, he could have all of the knowledge from all of the world for seven years. After seven years of abusing this power, the devil came to take his soul. He dragged Faust by his hair out of the castle tower and the indelible blood stains can still be seen on the pavement to this day.Johann Georg Faust did actually exist and he was imprisoned in Batenburg Castle for several years.
In the Eighty Years’ War the castle’s occupant, Catharina van Gelder, sided with the Spaniards, which did not please William of Orange. He besieged the castle in 1574 destroying the south side of the castle and the fortified bailey which were never rebuilt. This explains why the castle is now shaped like a horseshoe. The rest of the castle was renovated in the 17th century and was home to various noble families. The building has recently been thoroughly restored and now houses an office. Access to the castle is limited.References:
Roman Walls of Lugo are an exceptional architectural, archaeological and constructive legacy of Roman engineering, dating from the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The Walls are built of internal and external stone facings of slate with some granite, with a core filling of a conglomerate of slate slabs and worked stone pieces from Roman buildings, interlocked with lime mortar.
Their total length of 2117 m in the shape of an oblong rectangle occupies an area of 1.68 ha. Their height varies between 8 and 10 m, with a width of 4.2 m, reaching 7 m in some specific points. The walls still contain 85 external towers, 10 gates (five of which are original and five that were opened in modern times), four staircases and two ramps providing access to the walkway along the top of the walls, one of which is internal and the other external. Each tower contained access stairs leading from the intervallum to the wall walk of town wall, of which a total of 21 have been discovered to date.
The defences of Lugo are the most complete and best preserved example of Roman military architecture in the Western Roman Empire.
Despite the renovation work carried out, the walls conserve their original layout and the construction features associated with their defensive purpose, with walls, battlements, towers, fortifications, both modern and original gates and stairways, and a moat.
Since they were built, the walls have defined the layout and growth of the city, which was declared a Historical-Artistic Ensemble in 1973, forming a part of it and becoming an emblematic structure that can be freely accessed to walk along. The local inhabitants and visitors alike have used them as an area for enjoyment and as a part of urban life for centuries.
The fortifications were added to UNESCO"s World Heritage List in late 2000 and are a popular tourist attraction.