From a strategic point of view the mighty Dömitz fortress could hardly have been built in a better location: It protected the south-western border of Mecklenburg and the Elbe crossings. Furthermore, duties could be levied on the Elbe.
The pentagon-shaped Renaissance fortress was erected between 1559 und 1565 under Duke Johann Albrecht I. The architect was Francesco a Bornau, an Italian. From the 18th century on, the fortress served as a prison. The most famous prisoner was the Mecklenburg author Fritz Reuter, who had to spend some years here in the 19th century.
The Dömitz Fortress survived the centuries without appreciable destruction. In the year 1975 it was declared a protected monument.
Today many parts of the fortress are accessible to visitors. From the ramparts you can overlook the entire complex. In the casemates you can imagine how the prisoners in the fortress felt. The exhibitions in the gun powder magazine and in the commander’s house tell about the history of the fortress and the town of Dömitz.References:
The Château Comtal (Count’s Castle) is a medieval castle within the Cité of Carcassonne, the largest city in Europe with its city walls still intact. The Château Comtal has a strong claim to be called a 'Cathar Castle'. When the Catholic Crusader army arrived in 1209 they first attacked Raymond-Roger Trencavel's castrum at Bèziers and then moved on to his main stronghold at Carcassonne.
The castle with rectangular shape is separated from the city by a deep ditch and defended by two barbicans. There are six towers curtain walls.
The castle was restored in 1853 by the architect Eugène Viollet-le-Duc. It was added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997.