Sevnica Castle it dominates the old town of Sevnica and offers views of the surrounding countryside.
The Archdiocese of Salzburg held local estates since 1043 and Sevnica Castle was mentioned for the first time in 1309. The origin of the building was not documented but it was most probably built during the bishopric of Konrad the First von Abensberg (1106–1147), who rebuilt and colonized this area devastated by Hungarian invasions in the 10th century and in the beginning of the 12th century. The only remaining part of the original building is a tower nowadays included in the left wing of the castle.
The so-called Lutheran Cellar was built in the mid-16th century at the southeast side of the Castle Hill. The interior of it embellish frescos dates from the second half of the 16th century.
Between 1595 and 1597, Innocenz Moscon rebuilt the castle in then contemporary Late-Renaissance style and gave it thus its present form. The castle remained the ownership of the Archdiocese of Salzburg until 1803. The storms and fire damaged the castle in 1778 and 1801.
In 1803 Count Johann Händl von Rebenburg became the proprietor of Sevnica Castle. He lowered the battlements, filled in the moats, planted the trees in the park around the castle and made a vineyard with terraces at the south side of the castle hill.
As many other castles in Slovenia, Sevnica Castle was nationalized after the World War II and the precious furniture, which remained untouched until then, vanished. Poor families without apartments of their own were accommodated in the castle and they contributed to the ruination of its property. The park was in a state of total neglect and nobody cared about the vineyard anymore, so even the wine cellar beside Lutheran Cellar was not needed and was removed. The castle has been restored since the 1960s.
Today, Sevnica Castle houses the School and Firefighting Museum, the Museum of Exiles, and an exhibition of decorative arts.References:
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.