The Bobolice Castle was built by King Casimir III the Great in the middle of the 14th century, probably in place of an earlier wooden structure. The castle was a part of the defence system of royal strongholds protecting the western border of Poland on the side of Silesia. In 1370, immediately after becoming King of Poland, Louis I the Great granted the castle to Wladyslaw Opolczyk, Duke of Opole, as a prize for his support of the king’s dynastic plans. Nine years later Opolczyk leased the castle to Andrzej Schoen, a Hungarian from Barbalas; the new owner manned it with Germans and Czechs, who robbed local inhabitants and conspired with the Teutonic Order. Dissatisfied with their behaviour, the Polish king W³adys³aw Jagie³³o invaded Bobolice in 1396 and took over the castle with adjacent estates. From that time on, the stronghold was owned by a number of families.
The beginning of the decline of the castle dates back to 1587, when it was heavily devastated during the invasion of Maximilian III, Archduke of Austria, a rival of Sigismund III Vasa to the Polish throne. The castle was reconstructed by the then owners, the Krezowie family, but in 1657, during the Deluge, it was plundered and totally ruined by Swedish troops. The condition of the stronghold was so bad that when King John III Sobieski arrived here in 1683, he had to spend the night in a tent.
In the 19th century a huge treasure was found in stronghold cellars. It is supposed that its part may be stored in the legendary tunnel between Bobolice and Mirów. In 1882, after parcelling out the land, the already deserted walls were acquired by the peasant family of Bary³ów. Now the castle belongs to the Lasecki family, who decided to rebuild it in 1999.
The castle is situated on a steep rocky hill (360 m above sea level). Up till now, only the upper part of the stronghold (the residential building with at least two storeys and remnants of the cylindrical wall tower) has survived. The castle was accessible through a drawbridge over the dry moat, and the entire construction was surrounded by walls with battlements, made of local white limestone. Currently reconstruction works are under way in order to restore the entrance gate and the circumferential wall around the castle grounds.References:
The Palazzo Colonna is a palatial block of buildings built in part over ruins of an old Roman Serapeum, and has belonged to the prestigious Colonna family for over twenty generations.
The first part of the palace dates from the 13th century, and tradition holds that the building hosted Dante in his visit to Rome. The first documentary mention notes that the property hosted Cardinal Giovanni and Giacomo Colonna in the 13th century. It was also home to Cardinal Oddone Colonna before he ascended to the papacy as Martin V (1417–1431).
With his passing, the palace was sacked during feuds, and the main property passed into the hands of the Della Rovere family. It returned to the Colonna family when Marcantonio I Colonna married Lucrezia Gara Franciotti Della Rovere, the niece of pope Julius II. The Colonna"s alliance to the Habsburg power, likely protected the palace from looting during the Sack of Rome (1527).
Starting with Filippo Colonna (1578–1639) many changes have refurbished and create a unitary complex around a central garden. Architects including Girolamo Rainaldi and Paolo Marucelli labored on specific projects. Only in the 17th and 18th centuries were the main facades completed. Much of this design was completed by Antonio del Grande (including the grand gallery), and Girolamo Fontana (decoration of gallery). In the 18th century, the long low facade designed by Nicola Michetti with later additions by Paolo Posi with taller corner blocks (facing Piazza Apostoli) was constructed recalls earlier structures resembling a fortification.
The main gallery (completed 1703) and the masterful Colonna art collection was acquired after 1650 by both the cardinal Girolamo I Colonna and his nephew the Connestabile Lorenzo Onofrio Colonna and includes works by Lorenzo Monaco, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Palma the Elder, Salviati, Bronzino, Tintoretto, Pietro da Cortona, Annibale Carracci (painting of The Beaneater), Guercino, Francesco Albani, Muziano and Guido Reni. Ceiling frescoes by Filippo Gherardi, Giovanni Coli, Sebastiano Ricci, and Giuseppe Bartolomeo Chiari celebrate the role of Marcantonio II Colonna in the battle of Lepanto (1571). The gallery is open to the public on Saturday mornings.
The older wing of the complex known as the Princess Isabelle"s apartments, but once housing Martin V"s library and palace, contains frescoes by Pinturicchio, Antonio Tempesta, Crescenzio Onofri, Giacinto Gimignani, and Carlo Cesi. It contains a collection of landscapes and genre scenes by painters like Gaspard Dughet, Caspar Van Wittel (Vanvitelli), and Jan Brueghel the Elder.
Along with the possessions of the Doria-Pamphilij and Pallavacini-Rospigliosi families, this is one of the largest private art collections in Rome.