Blutenburg Castle is an old ducal country seat in the west of Munich. The castle was built between two arms of the River Würm for Duke Albert III, Duke of Bavaria in 1438–39 as a hunting-lodge, replacing an older castle burned down in war. The origin of this castle is a moated castle of the 13th century. The core of this castle was a residential tower, the remains of which were uncovered in 1981. The fortress was first mentioned in writing only in 1432.
Albert's son, Duke Sigismund of Bavaria, ordered extensions of the castle beginning in 1488; he died here in 1501. The main building became derelict during the Thirty Years War, but was rebuilt in 1680–81. The castle is still surrounded by a ring wall with three towers and a gate tower. The defensive character of the castle, however, was with the reconstruction in 17th Century significantly reduced. The plant was already at that time no longer defensible.
Sigismund of Bavaria also ordered the construction of the palace chapel, a splendid masterpiece of late Gothic style which still has preserved its stained-glass windows, along with the altars with three paintings created in 1491 by Jan Polack. The cycle of the statues of the apostles on the side walls was built around 1490/95.
Since 1983 the International Youth Library (Internationale Jugendbibliothek) has been housed in Blutenburg Castle. The Blutenburg concerts are well known.References:
The Beckov castle stands on a steep 50 m tall rock in the village Beckov. The dominance of the rock and impression of invincibility it gaves, challenged our ancestors to make use of these assets. The result is a remarkable harmony between the natural setting and architecture.
The castle first mentioned in 1200 was originally owned by the King and later, at the end of the 13th century it fell in hands of Matúš Èák. Its owners alternated - at the end of the 14th century the family of Stibor of Stiborice bought it.
The next owners, the Bánffys who adapted the Gothic castle to the Renaissance residence, improved its fortifications preventing the Turks from conquering it at the end of the 16th century. When Bánffys died out, the castle was owned by several noble families. It fell in decay after fire in 1729.
The history of the castle is the subject of different legends. One of them narrates the origin of the name of castle derived from that of jester Becko for whom the Duke Stibor had the castle built.
Another legend has it that the lord of the castle had his servant thrown down from the rock because he protected his child from the lords favourite dog. Before his death, the servant pronounced a curse saying that they would meet in a year and days time, and indeed precisely after that time the lord was bitten by a snake and fell down to the same abyss.
The well-conserved ruins of the castle, now the National Cultural Monument, are frequently visited by tourists, above all in July when the castle festival takes place. The former Ambro curia situated below the castle now shelters the exhibition of the local history.