Tenczyn Castle Ruins

Rudno, Poland

Tenczyn Castle was built as a seat of the powerful Tęczyński family. The castle fell into ruin during the Deluge in mid-17th century, after being pillaged and burned by Swedish-Brandenburgian forces looking for the Polish Crown Jewels and rumored treasures of the Tęczyński family. Subsequently rebuilt, after a fire in the mid-18th century it again fell into disrepair and remains in that state to this day.

The first mention of the stronghold is dated in 1308. It is believed that the first wooden structure was erected around 1319 by Jan Nawój of Morawica, Castellan of Cracow. He also built the largest of the castle towers, called today the Nawojowa tower. The medieval castle included three additional round Gothic towers. Further expansion was carried out by Jan"s son Jędrzej, governor of Cracow and Sandomierz. He erected the north-east part of the structure, where he lived, dying there in 1368; he is also known as the first to take the name Tęczyński. Jędrzej"s son Jasko renewed and significantly expanded the castle, and founded a chapel. The first recorded mention relating directly to the castle dates from this period. The king Władysław Jagiełło imprisoned some important Teutonic prisoners, captured during the Battle of Grunwald, in the castle.

Within a short period of time the Tęczyński family rose to a great importance in Poland, holding 45 estates, of which 15 were near the castle. Around the middle of the 16th century, the castle was frequented by Mikołaj Rej, Jan Kochanowski, Piotr Kochanowski and other important figures of the Polish Renaissance. In 1570 Jan Tęczyński, Castellan of Wojnicz reconstructed the castle. It had three wings with a central courtyard open to the west and adorned with Renaissance attics, cornices and arcades. It was also surrounded by a curtain wall on the north, strengthened with a bastion entry (barbican). Two pentagonal bastions were erected on the south. After the reconstruction the castle took the shape of an irregular polygon, measuring over 140 meters from east to west, and 130 meters from north to south. Italian gardens and vineyards stretched out below the castle. The last big expenditure on the castle was a thorough reconstruction of the castle chapel, completed in the early 17th century by Agnieszka Firlejowa née Tęczyńska. In 1637 Jan Magnus Tęczyński, the last representative of the family, died in the castle.

In 1655, during the Deluge, the rumor was spread that Jerzy Sebastian Lubomirski, Grand Marshal of the Crown had hidden the Polish Crown Jewels in Tenczyn Castle. The Swedish-Brandenburgian forces led by Kurt Christoph von Königsmarck captured the castle against a defence led by captain Jan Dziula and slaughtered all of its defenders. When they did not find treasure they left the fortress and burned it in July 1656.

After the Deluge the castle was for the most part rebuilt and partially inhabited. At the beginning of the 18th century the Tenczyn estates passed to Adam Mikołaj Sieniawski, later to Prince August Aleksander Czartoryski who had married with Sieniawski"s only daughter Maria Zofia, eventually passing to his daughter Izabela Lubomirska. After the fire in 1768 the structure increasingly fell into disrepair. In 1783, the remains of Jan Magnus Tęczyński were moved from the castle chapel to a new tomb in St. Catherine"s Church in Tenczynek. In 1816, the castle became the property of the Potocki family and remained in their hands until the outbreak of World War II in 1939.

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Address

Rudno, Poland
See all sites in Rudno

Details

Founded: 14th century
Category: Miscellaneous historic sites in Poland

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Margarita Z (8 months ago)
Beautiful castle. As for ruins they preserve them perfectly. There are no rooms or exhibitions but it is beautiful in itself. It’s interesting when they hold some kind of tournament. Look for the program of events and come with the whole family. There are place to eat nearby. Cheap and awesome here.
Gianluca Fiore (9 months ago)
Not sure why people rave about these ruins. There is little to nothing to see, it is in pretty bad shape and most of what is viewable is reconstructed. Not worth the ticket price but ok if you are in the area and want to have a panoramic view of it.
Marcin Zawislak (9 months ago)
Finally opened for visitors. Beautiful ruins of castle surrounded by woods. Amazing views from the tower.
Manishi cally (11 months ago)
A beautifully preserved castle. If you are a fan of historical places,then this is a must go. Kids will also enjoy it there. There are restrooms and eateries as well. You can also feed the goats.
Matt P (11 months ago)
Zamek Tenczyn in Rudno is nothing short of an ethereal escape to the majestic past of Poland. Nestled amidst emerald greenery, this 14th-century castle ruin is a treasure trove for history buffs, photographers, and nature lovers alike. What truly sets the experience apart is the incredible guidance provided by the knowledgeable and charismatic guide, “Gołąbek.” His passion and deep understanding of the castle’s history are palpable, and he captivates visitors with riveting tales of knights, nobility, and ancient traditions. Gołąbek's lively narration breathes life into the stone walls and makes the ruins feel like a living, breathing entity. His presence undoubtedly elevates the visit to Zamek Tenczyn to an unforgettable experience.
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