Koerich Castle ruins is one of the castles in the so-called Valley of the Seven Castles. Standing on level ground in the valley of the stream of Goeblange, the castle's impressive keep and external walls blend harmoniously with the Baroque church and the old houses in the centre of the village.
The Grevenschlass, now known as Koerich Castle, was built by Wirich I, Lord of Koerich and Seneschal of Luxembourg at the end of the 12th and beginning of the 13th century in late Romanesque style. It was expanded in 1304 by Godefroid of Koerich who gave it a more Gothic appearance. The keep, now 11 m tall, was certainly much higher when it was built. With a base measuring 12 by 11.6 m and walls up to 3.5 m thick, it is one of the most impressive in the entire region. A spiral staircase inside one of the walls provided access to the different floors.
Surrounded by a moat, the castle originally had a fortified entrance with a portcullis. From 1380, Gilles of Autel and Koerich converted the stronghold into a more comfortable residence by building two 12-m towers at either end of the south wall. The south-western tower which still stands, houses a chapel on the ground floor. In 1580, the new owner Jacques de Raville made further changes, demolishing part of the property and adding two Renaissance wings. The stately fireplace on the first floor and large rectangular windows testify to the castle's palatial splendor at the time. The south wing was again altered in 1728, this time with Baroque additions.
After the death of the Ravilles in the second half of the 18th century, the castle started to fall into ruin owing to lack of maintenance. In 1950, Pierre Flammang, the last private owner, carried out some essential structural repairs before the castle finally came into the hands of the State. Although major repairs are still in progress, the site can be visited free of charge.References:
Augustusburg Palace represents one of the first examples of Rococo creations in Germany. For the Cologne elector and archbishop Clemens August of the House of Wittelsbach it was the favourite residence. In 1725 the Westphalian architect Johann Conrad Schlaun was commissioned by Clemens August to begin the construction of the palace on the ruins of a medieval moated castle.
In 1728, the Bavarian court architect François de Cuvilliés took over and made the palace into one of the most glorious residences of its time. Until its completion in 1768, numerous outstanding artists of European renown contributed to its beauty. A prime example of the calibre of artists employed here is Balthasar Neumann, who created the design for the magnificent staircase, an enchanting creation full of dynamism and elegance. The magical interplay of architecture, sculpture, painting and garden design made the Brühl Palaces a masterpiece of German Rococo.
UNESCO honoured history and present of the Rococo Palaces by inscribing Augustusburg Palace – together with Falkenlust Palace and their extensive gardens – on the World Heritage List in 1984. From 1949 onwards, Augustusburg Palace was used for representative purposes by the German Federal President and the Federal Government for many decades.
In 1728, Dominique Girard designed the palace gardens according to French models. Owing to constant renovation and care, it is today one of the most authentic examples of 18th century garden design in Europe. Next to the Baroque gardens, Peter Joseph Lenné redesigned the forested areas based on English landscaping models. Today it is a wonderful place to have a walk.