Heeswijk Castle was originally built in the 11th century. The original motte was erected in 1080. During the subsequent centuries this motte was reduced and in its place a castle was built.

Heeswijk Castle has played a crucial role in the history of the Netherlands. Around the year 1600 Prince Maurits twice failed to take the castle. Eventually, his half-brother Frederick Henry did, however, succeeded in capturing the castle in 1629, which in turn enabled him to lay siege to 's-Hertogenbosch. In 1672 the French king Louis XIV stayed at Heeswijk Castle during his campaign against the Dutch Republic. At the end of the 18th century General Pichegru, a French general under the command of Napoleon used the castle as his headquarters.

In 1835, André Baron van den Bogaerde van Terbrugge bought the Heeswijk Castle, which by then had fallen into disrepair, and immediately started reconstruction works on a large scale. The castle was enlarged with an armory. He also had the so-called 'Iron Tower' built in order to house his and his sons, Louis and Donat, growing collection of art objects and curiosa.

The current castle museum attempts to reflect the life and traditions of the middle of the 19th century. Following recent restoration guided tours of the castle are offered. The armory of the castle is used as a wedding location by the municipality Bernheze. Under the promenade cellar roofs (wedding) receptions can be held and the carriage house of the castle accommodates training facilities as well as congress and presentation rooms.

References:

Comments

Your name



Details

Founded: 1080
Category: Castles and fortifications in Netherlands

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Maged Elsamny (4 months ago)
Love it! A bit small which contradicts its exterior but full of marvels.
Francesca Toso (5 months ago)
Amazing castle, easy to reach both by bike and by car, nice to have a pic-nic in the park and stroll around
Aistė Žukaitė (5 months ago)
Very nice small castlr Worth a visit. And amazing restaurant next to it. Easy to visit with a baby. Also nice to walk around with a dog. If you will come with a dog you will not be able to visit inside of the castle.
Joost Heymeijer (5 months ago)
What a stunning place. So well maintained and beautifully restored. Great storytelling and 1000 years history. Nice little Cafe too! Do go.
Natália Leal (13 months ago)
Well-preserved castle/palace and garden. Do use the free audio tour (ask at the shop for a tablet or download it online) and allow 1-2 hours for it. Parking was easy but it's a few hundred meters away. Entrance free with the Dutch Museum Card.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba

The Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba, also known as the Great Mosque of Córdoba and the Mezquita is regarded as one of the most accomplished monuments of Moorish architecture.

According to a traditional account, a small Visigoth church, the Catholic Basilica of Saint Vincent of Lérins, originally stood on the site. In 784 Abd al-Rahman I ordered construction of the Great Mosque, which was considerably expanded by later Muslim rulers. The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd al-Rahman II ordered a new minaret, while in 961 Al-Hakam II enlarged the building and enriched the Mihrab. The last of such reforms was carried out by Almanzor in 987. It was connected to the Caliph"s palace by a raised walkway, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for previous Islamic rulers – as well as Christian Kings who built their palaces adjacent to churches. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 with the completion of the outer naves and courtyard.

In 1236, Córdoba was conquered by King Ferdinand III of Castile, and the centre of the mosque was converted into a Catholic cathedral. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features, such as King Henry II rebuilding the chapel in the 14th century. The minaret of the mosque was also converted to the bell tower of the cathedral. It was adorned with Santiago de Compostela"s captured cathedral bells. Following a windstorm in 1589, the former minaret was further reinforced by encasing it within a new structure.

The most significant alteration was the building of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the expansive structure. The insertion was constructed by permission of Charles V, king of Castile and Aragon. Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.

Architecture

The building"s floor plan is seen to be parallel to some of the earliest mosques built from the very beginning of Islam. It had a rectangular prayer hall with aisles arranged perpendicular to the qibla, the direction towards which Muslims pray. The prayer hall was large and flat, with timber ceilings held up by arches of horseshoe-like appearance.

In planning the mosque, the architects incorporated a number of Roman columns with choice capitals. Some of the columns were already in the Gothic structure; others were sent from various regions of Iberia as presents from the governors of provinces. Ivory, jasper, porphyry, gold, silver, copper, and brass were used in the decorations. Marvellous mosaics and azulejos were designed. Later, the immense temple embodied all the styles of Morisco architecture into one composition.

The building is most notable for its arcaded hypostyle hall, with 856 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, granite and porphyry. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple that had occupied the site previously, as well as other Roman buildings, such as the Mérida amphitheatre. The double arches were an innovation, permitting higher ceilings than would otherwise be possible with relatively low columns. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch.