Radyně Castle, like the similarly conceived Kasperk, represents the height of the 14th-century trend towards the merging of castle buildings.
When the castle of Starý Plzenec fell into disrepair in the first half of the 13th century, it was necessary to build a new centre of royal power for the administration of the region of Plzeň. Construction apparently began in 1353, during the rule of Charles IV, and was completed in 1361. The original name of Karlskrone (Charles' Crown) did not become commonly used in the district, and the castle gradually took the name of the hill on which it was built - Radyně.
The burgraves who governed the region were based in Radyně, and by the end of the 15th century it had been acquired by the Šternberks (1496–1561), who settled at the more comfortable castle at Bechyně. Its counterpart at Radyně, which was accessible only with difficulty, started to fall into disrepair, and its fate was sealed in the first quarter of the 16th century when it was burned down. As early as 1558, record indicated that it was abandoned, and not even the affluent Černín of the Crudenice family, owners of the castle as well as the surrounding district in the 18th century, invested in repair work. The mysterious abandoned ruin had to wait until the coming of the Romantic movement in the 19th century for more interest to be shown in it. Minor repairs and alterations were however destroyed by fire in 1886.
In recent years, the castle has been progressively renovated, and a permanent exhibition devoted to its history can now be seen. The tower is open to visitors of the castle, and its observation point affords wonderful views.References:
The eight towns in south-eastern Sicily, including Ragusa, were all rebuilt after 1693 on or beside towns existing at the time of the earthquake which took place in that year. They represent a considerable collective undertaking, successfully carried out at a high level of architectural and artistic achievement. Keeping within the late Baroque style of the day, they also depict distinctive innovations in town planning and urban building. Together with seven other cities in the Val di Noto, it is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In 1693 Ragusa was devastated by a huge earthquake, which killed some 5,000 inhabitants. Following this catastrophe the city was largely rebuilt, and many Baroque buildings from this time remain in the city. Most of the population moved to a new settlement in the former district of Patro, calling this new municipality 'Ragusa Superiore' (Upper Ragusa) and the ancient city 'Ragusa Inferiore' (Lower Ragusa). The two cities remained separated until 1926, when they were fused together to become a provincial capital in 1927.