William I built the Walferdange Castle as a stud farm for breeding horses between 1824 and 1828. His son, William II, converted it into a royal residence where he stayed when visiting Luxembourg. It was however his son Prince Henry and his wife Amalia who extended the castle and its gardens while they lived there from 1853. Prince Henry, who was governor of Luxembourg, was well liked, especially in Walferdange where he distributed gifts to the children each Christmas. After his death in 1879, the castle lay empty until Grand Duke Adolphe adopted it as his summer residence in 1905, completely refurbishing the castle and its park. During the 20th century, the castle was used successively as a hospital, a teacher training college, an army barracks for the American and then the Luxembourg army and a pedagocical institute before the University of Luxembourg opened its Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education there in 2003.

Today the castle is one of the campuses of the University of Luxembourg, housing the Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education.



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Founded: 1824
Category: Castles and fortifications in Luxembourg

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Gruyères Castle

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.