Hohennagold Castle is a ruined castle overlooking the Black Forest town of Nagold. The ruins represent a relatively well-preserved 12th-century castle. The keep behind the curtain walls, a tower in the north-western corner of the complex as well as the outer ward with half-round and angular towers, are still visible. Around the castle there appears to have been a moat.
An early medieval fortification was possibly erected at the location of the future castle around 750 by Count Ruodbrecht, one of Charlemagne"s uncles. The original castle was built around 1100 by the Counts of Nagold, who became the Counts palatine of Tübingen in 1145. The castle complex was extensively expanded between 1153 and 1162.
In the middle of the 13th century the castle passed into the possession of the Counts of Hohenberg. Thereafter, one branch of this family called itself Counts of Nagold and had the castle transformed into their residence in the 13th and 14th century. In 1364 the sold the castle to the Counts of Württemberg. The new owners added bastions and towers to the outer ward and had the castle occupied by their ministeriales. Towards the end of the Thirty Years" War, the castle was conquered by Bavarian troops in 1645 and severely damaged. In 1646 the remnants of the castle were pulled down.
In 1945 the northwest tower was destroyed by a low-level attack carried out by Allied planes. The castle remains were tentatively restored after World War II, trying to preserve the castle as a ruin.References:
Czocha Castle is located on the Lake Leśnia, what is now the Polish part of Upper Lusatia. Czocha castle was built on gneiss rock, and its oldest part is the keep, to which housing structures were later added.
Czocha Castle began as a stronghold, on the Czech-Lusatian border. Its construction was ordered by Wenceslaus I of Bohemia, in the middle of the 13th century (1241–1247). In 1253 castle was handed over to Konrad von Wallhausen, Bishop of Meissen. In 1319 the complex became part of the dukedom of Henry I of Jawor, and after his death, it was taken over by another Silesian prince, Bolko II the Small, and his wife Agnieszka. Origin of the stone castle dates back to 1329.
In the mid-14th century, Czocha Castle was annexed by Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia. Then, between 1389 and 1453, it belonged to the noble families of von Dohn and von Kluks. Reinforced, the complex was besieged by the Hussites in the early 15th century, who captured it in 1427, and remained in the castle for unknown time (see Hussite Wars). In 1453, the castle was purchased by the family of von Nostitz, who owned it for 250 years, making several changes through remodelling projects in 1525 and 1611. Czocha's walls were strengthened and reinforced, which thwarted a Swedish siege of the complex during the Thirty Years War. In 1703, the castle was purchased by Jan Hartwig von Uechtritz, influential courtier of Augustus II the Strong. On August 17, 1793, the whole complex burned in a fire.
In 1909, Czocha was bought by a cigar manufacturer from Dresden, Ernst Gutschow, who ordered major remodelling, carried out by Berlin architect Bodo Ebhardt, based on a 1703 painting of the castle. Gutschow, who was close to the Russian Imperial Court and hosted several White emigres in Czocha, lived in the castle until March 1945. Upon leaving, he packed up the most valuable possessions and moved them out.
After World War II, the castle was ransacked several times, both by soldiers of the Red Army, and Polish thieves, who came to the so-called Recovered Territories from central and eastern part of the country. Pieces of furniture and other goods were stolen, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the castle was home to refugees from Greece. In 1952, Czocha was taken over by the Polish Army. Used as a military vacation resort, it was erased from official maps. The castle has been open to the public since September 1996 as a hotel and conference centre. The complex was featured in several movies and television series. Recently, the castle has been used as the setting of the College of Wizardry, a live action role-playing game (LARP) that takes place in their own universe and can be compared to Harry Potter.