Tanstein Castle

Dahn, Germany

Tanstein Castle is one of the three castles at Dahn; the others being Altdahn and Grafendahn. Although the three castles are sited next to one another on a hill ridge, they were not built at the same time.

Tanstein is the oldest of the three castles in the group. An 1127 document refers to an Anshelmus de Tannicka as the owner or governor; as a result the castle was probably built in the early 12th century. In 1189, in a deed by Emperor Frederick Barbarossa, a Henry von der Than is mentioned and the castle designated as an immediate imperial fief. In the period that followed, Ulrich of Dahn and Conrad of Dahn are named as imperial ministeriales. In 1328 the castle became a fief of the bishops of Speyer. Until 1464 there were frequent changes of ownership, which suggests that the fief was still not inheritable during this phase, but was always re-enfeoffed.

In 1512 Frederick of Dahn purchased the castle. Because he was an ally of the knight, Franz von Sickingen, he was involved in his battles against the imperial princes in southwest Germany. After Sickingen's defeat and death in 1523, Tanstein, too, fell into the hands of the victors. Its occupation by troops of the Archbishop of Trier lasted until 1544 and probably led to irreparable damage to the structure of the castle, because it was finally abandoned in 1585. In 1689, at the start of the War of the Palatine Succession, the French completely destroyed the ruins.

Tanstein Castle is located on the two westernmost rock outcrops of the Dahn castle cluster. Both were originally linked by a bridge. On the rocks today are modern parapet walls that have been rather arbitrarily added and do not give any real idea of the old castle buildings. On the western rock outcrop there were apparently domestic-like buildings, that were built against the rocks. This is evinced by putlock holes and other marks on the rocks as well as a large cistern, in which water from the roofs was gathered and stored.

The lower ward on the southern rock outcrop still shows traces of the original walls dating to the 15th century. These include the ruins of a smithy and a smelting furnace.



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K40, Dahn, Germany
See all sites in Dahn


Founded: 12th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Germany
Historical period: Hohenstaufen Dynasty (Germany)


4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

John Muhlhauser (3 years ago)
Beautiful place for a hike. Highly recommend going
Detlef Bruszies (3 years ago)
Eine ehemalige Vorburg der Burg Altdahn und damit Teil der Dahner Burgengruppe, welche in direkter Nachbarschaft auf einem Bergrücken liegen. Vom nahegelegenen Wanderparkplatz über einen recht kurzen, aber steilen Asphaltweg schnell erreichbar. Die ideale Höhenburg also für wanderfaule Touristen. Der Eintritt zur Burgengruppe ist frei. Es sind zwar einige knappe Hinweisschilder vorhanden, welche aber wenige bis keine Informationen über die Geschichte diese Ortes vermitteln. Der wissensdurstige Besucher kann sich allerdings vor Ort in einem kleinen Café mit recht preiswertem Infomaterial versorgen. Wie fast alle Burgruinen im Wasgau ist auch Tanstein für Menschen mit einer Gehbehinderung nur schwer zu erleben, da auch hier viele recht steile und teilweise ausgetretene Treppen zu bewältigen sind. Vom höchsten Punkt von Tanstein bietet sich ein schöner Rundumblick in die bewaldeten Hügel des Wasgau und auf die in direkter Nachbarschaft gelegenen Burgen Grafendahn und Altdahn.
Eric STRAETEN (3 years ago)
Visite à recommander, endroit superbe.
Bielefeld Panorama (3 years ago)
Gut erhaltene .lang gezogene Burganlage
Christof Nieder (3 years ago)
Imposante Burgenanlage mit unbeschreiblicher Aussicht. Es gibt viel zu entdecken. Ein lohnenswerter Besuch.
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