Birseck Castle is also called Vordere Burg Birseck and is one of four castles on a slope called Birseck that confines the plain of the Birs river. Burg Reichenstein sits on a higher slope to the north.

The origins of the castle probably date back to the age of Counts of Frohburg in the 12th century. Bishop Lüthold of Basel bought the castle hill from the Niedermünster monastery in 1239 and built the present castle in 1243/44.

In the 15th and 17th centuries Birseck was expanded. It served during the Counter-Reformation as a residence for Bishop Christoph Blarer (around 1600). In the middle of the 18th century, a stone bridge replaced the drawbridge.

In the 18th century, the castle was poorly maintained. In 1763 , Karl von Andlau moved his county seat from the castle down to the village. During the French Revolution in 1793, some parts of the English garden, the Ermitage and the building of the castle were set on fire or destroyed by drunken peasants. In 1808, Conrad von Andlau and Canon Heinrich von Ligerz acquired the ruins. The tower and the chapel were restored to their original state in the neo-Gothic style.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1243-1244
Category: Castles and fortifications in Switzerland

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Siddharth Mohan (10 months ago)
Built around 1200, this charming 800 year old castle had it's own piece of action when it was almost destroyed by Villagers in 1793 and used as a quarry. In 1808, the castle was renovated and remodeled as a beautiful romantic English Garden. The ruins are accessible and maintained by Foundation Ermitage Arlesheim.
Christiaan Kelder (2 years ago)
Me and my family loved our visit there yesterday. It is a very beautifull place!
Siddharth Mohan (2 years ago)
Built around 1200, this charming 800 year old castle had it's own piece of action when it was almost destroyed by Villagers in 1793 and used as a quarry. In 1808, the castle was renovated and remodeled as a beautiful romantic English Garden. The ruins are accessible and maintained by Foundation Ermitage Arlesheim.
Michał Modliński (4 years ago)
Great castle. Nice views.
Matthew McCarthy (5 years ago)
Very charming area with plenty of nature. Unfortunately, the castle is only open from May-October.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Augustusburg Palace

Augustusburg Palace represents one of the first examples of Rococo creations in Germany. For the Cologne elector and archbishop Clemens August of the House of Wittelsbach it was the favourite residence. In 1725 the Westphalian architect Johann Conrad Schlaun was commissioned by Clemens August to begin the construction of the palace on the ruins of a medieval moated castle.

In 1728, the Bavarian court architect François de Cuvilliés took over and made the palace into one of the most glorious residences of its time. Until its completion in 1768, numerous outstanding artists of European renown contributed to its beauty. A prime example of the calibre of artists employed here is Balthasar Neumann, who created the design for the magnificent staircase, an enchanting creation full of dynamism and elegance. The magical interplay of architecture, sculpture, painting and garden design made the Brühl Palaces a masterpiece of German Rococo.

UNESCO honoured history and present of the Rococo Palaces by inscribing Augustusburg Palace – together with Falkenlust Palace and their extensive gardens – on the World Heritage List in 1984. From 1949 onwards, Augustusburg Palace was used for representative purposes by the German Federal President and the Federal Government for many decades.

In 1728, Dominique Girard designed the palace gardens according to French models. Owing to constant renovation and care, it is today one of the most authentic examples of 18th century garden design in Europe. Next to the Baroque gardens, Peter Joseph Lenné redesigned the forested areas based on English landscaping models. Today it is a wonderful place to have a walk.