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:
The Odeon of Herodes Atticus is a stone theatre structure located on the southwest slope of the Acropolis of Athens. It was built in 161 AD by the Athenian magnate Herodes Atticus in memory of his wife, Aspasia Annia Regilla. It was originally a steep-sloped theater with a three-story stone front wall and a wooden roof made of expensive cedar of Lebanon timber. It was used as a venue for music concerts with a capacity of 5,000. It lasted intact until it was destroyed and left in ruins by the Heruli in 267 AD.
The audience stands and the orchestra (stage) were restored using Pentelic marble in the 1950s. Since then it has been the main venue of the Athens Festival, which runs from May through October each year, featuring a variety of acclaimed Greek as well as International performances.