Scharfenberg Castle (popularly also called Münz), is the ruin of a medieval rock castle above the small South Palatine town of Annweiler.
Scharfenberg and its sister castles, Trifels and Anebos are known as the Trifels Group and are the symbol of Annweiler, which sprawls beneath them in the valley meadows of the River Queich. In the immediate vicinity lie the sites of two other castles, the Fensterfels and the Has.
The landmark of the castle is a 20-metre-high bergfried, whose walls are made of rusticated ashlars from the Hohenstaufen era. In addition, parts of the well tower and enceinte may still be seen.
Scharfenberg Castle was built in the first half of the 12th century under the Hohenstaufen king, Conrad III, who died in 1152. It was initially probably used as a state gaol. After its subsequent owners, a ministeriales family, had been named Scharfenberg, it became the seat of the most important member of the family in the early 13th centyr, the Bishop of Speyer and Chancellor of the Holy Roman Empire, Conrad III of Scharfenberg. Since its destruction during the Peasants' War in 1525, the castle has lain in ruins.References:
i believe i am a direct decendent my birth name was stacy william scharfenberg my grand father gave me a wooden arrow with "5 minuten " on it i was later adopted by joe m mims jr any information availible please forward it to email@example.com
Derbent is the southernmost city in Russia, occupying the narrow gateway between the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains connecting the Eurasian steppes to the north and the Iranian Plateau to the south. Derbent claims to be the oldest city in Russia with historical documentation dating to the 8th century BCE. Due to its strategic location, over the course of history, the city changed ownership many times, particularly among the Persian, Arab, Mongol, Timurid, Shirvan and Iranian kingdoms.
Derbent has archaeological structures over 5,000 years old. As a result of this geographic peculiarity, the city developed between two walls, stretching from the mountains to the sea. These fortifications were continuously employed for a millennium and a half, longer than any other extant fortress in the world.
A traditionally and historically Iranian city, the first intensive settlement in the Derbent area dates from the 8th century BC. The site was intermittently controlled by the Persian monarchs, starting from the 6th century BC. Until the 4th century AD, it was part of Caucasian Albania which was a satrap of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. In the 5th century Derbent functioned as a border fortress and the seat of Sassanid Persians. Because of its strategic position on the northern branch of the Silk Route, the fortress was contested by the Khazars in the course of the Khazar-Arab Wars. In 654, Derbent was captured by the Arabs.
The Sassanid fortress does not exist any more, as the famous Derbent fortress as it stands today was built from the 12th century onward. Derbent became a strong military outpost and harbour of the Sassanid empire. During the 5th and 6th centuries, Derbent also became an important center for spreading the Christian faith in the Caucasus.
The site continued to be of great strategic importance until the 19th century. Today the fortifications consist of two parallel defence walls and Naryn-Kala Citadel. The walls are 3.6km long, stretching from the sea up to the mountains. They were built from stone and had 73 defence towers. 9 out of the 14 original gates remain.
In Naryn-Kala Citadel most of the old buildings, including a palace and a church, are now in ruins. It also holds baths and one of the oldest mosques in the former USSR.
In 2003, UNESCO included the old part of Derbent with traditional buildings in the World Heritage List.