Although the first written mention of the Zniev or Turiec Castle (castrum Turuc) is from 1243, archaeological excavations prove the existence of a fortified settlement as early as the 11th – 12th century. According to a document issued in 1253 by King Bela IV the castle was refortified by Ondrej Forgáč, who apart from other loyal deeds managed to save king´s life after the defeat of the royal army by the Tartars near the river Slaná, when he gave a very fast horse to the king to escape.
That is why the legend says the Zniev castle gave refuge to Bela IV from the Tartars. Forgáč had the castle reconstructed and had a new habitable tower called 'Forgač´s tower' built in 1241-1242 in the distance of 250 metres from the castle. In January 1243 the King and the royal family paid visit to the castle. The castle was a seat of the Turiec region form the middle of the 13th century till approx. 1339 when the Turiec County became separated from the Zvolen County and the task of its administrative centre was passed to the Sklabiňa Castle because of its better strategic position. In 1312-1321 the Zniev castle was owned by the powerful noble Matúš Čák of Trenčín.
The castle, however, gradually lost its importance, changed its name from Turiec to Zniev and became the property of the Premonstratesians. In the following period it constantly passed through various owners until it was in 1532 forcefully seized by the royal army after it had fallen, thanks to a betrayal, into the possession of the Kostka family fighting on the side of Ján Zápoľský. At the beginning of the 18th century an archive was kept there.References:
The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is situated in a strategic area on a rocky spur overlooking the Upper Rhine Plain, it was used by successive powers from the Middle Ages until the Thirty Years' War when it was abandoned. From 1900 to 1908 it was rebuilt at the behest of the German kaiser Wilhelm II. Today it is a major tourist site, attracting more than 500,000 visitors a year.
The first records of a castle built by the Hohenstaufens date back to 1147. The fortress changed its name to Koenigsburg (royal castle) around 1157. The castle was handed over to the Tiersteins by the Habsburgs following its destruction in 1462. They rebuilt and enlarged it, installing a defensive system designed to withstand artillery fire.
The fortification work accomplished over the 15th century did not suffice to keep the Swedish artillery at bay during the Thirty Years War, and the defences were overrun.