Belmont Castle was built in the 10th or 11th century for the Freiherr von Belmont. The first recorded member of the family was Lutefridus de Belmonte in 1137/39. The Belmont family was related to a number of other Raetian noble families including the powerful von Vaz. By the 13th century they were one of the most powerful families in Graubünden. They owned castles and villages throughout the region. Konrad von Belmont was the Bishop of Chur from 1273 until 1282. In 1267 Heinrich von Belmont was the first student from Raetia to study at University of Bologna. By 1200 the Belmonts appear to have moved to another castle near Castrischand then to Tuma Casti by Domat/Ems, probably leaving a bailiff or vogt at Belmont.

In 1352 Ulrich Walter von Belmont led a successful uprising against the Counts of Werdenberg-Heiligenberg. Together with the armies of the Montalt and the Rhäzüns families they defeated a Werdenberg-Heiligenberg army at Mundaun near Ilanz. In retaliation, soon thereafter, a Werdenberg army burned Ilanz to the ground. It is unknown whether Belmont Castle was also attacked and destroyed or was bypassed, but by the late 14th century it had fallen into ruins. On 11 July 1371 Ulrich Walter von Belmont died childless and the Belmont lands were inherited by the Montalt and Sax-Misox families. In 1380 the Sax-Misox family traded the ruins of Belmont Castle as well as other lands to Brun von Rhäzüns. After the trade the castle remained abandoned and continued to disintegrate. From 1932 through 1936 the ruins were excavated and repaired.

Castle site

The castle was built near the, now abandoned and vanished, Walser village of Fidaz near Flims. It was built on a rocky spire with sheer cliffs on the north and east sides. Very little is known about the construction history and layout of the castle. However, there were two semi-circular ring wall that wrapped around the east, north and north-west sides of the peak with the inner one built first followed by the outer later. The walls connected at least three buildings. The central and eastern building were probably residences. In the center of the half-circle is a 5.7 meters deep cistern. On the southern side of the castle is a smaller rocky peak that stands about 8 m above the castle and has a flat top that is about 10 m × 30 m. No stone ruins have been found on the small peak, so it was probably topped with one or more wooden buildings.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Address

Unnamed Road, Flims, Switzerland
See all sites in Flims

Details

Founded: 10th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Switzerland

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

User Reviews

Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Wroclaw Town Hall

The Old Town Hall of Wrocław is one of the main landmarks of the city. The Old Town Hall's long history reflects developments that have taken place in the city since its initial construction. The town hall serves the city of Wroclaw and is used for civic and cultural events such as concerts held in its Great Hall. In addition, it houses a museum and a basement restaurant.

The town hall was developed over a period of about 250 years, from the end of 13th century to the middle of 16th century. The structure and floor plan changed over this extended period in response to the changing needs of the city. The exact date of the initial construction is not known. However, between 1299 and 1301 a single-storey structure with cellars and a tower called the consistory was built. The oldest parts of the current building, the Burghers’ Hall and the lower floors of the tower, may date to this time. In these early days the primary purpose of the building was trade rather than civic administration activities.

Between 1328 and 1333 an upper storey was added to include the Council room and the Aldermen’s room. Expansion continued during the 14th century with the addition of extra rooms, most notably the Court room. The building became a key location for the city’s commercial and administrative functions.

The 15th and 16th centuries were times of prosperity for Wroclaw as was reflected in the rapid development of the building during that period. The construction program gathered momentum, particularly from 1470 to 1510, when several rooms were added. The Burghers’ Hall was re-vaulted to take on its current shape, and the upper story began to take shape with the development of the Great Hall and the addition of the Treasury and Little Treasury.

Further innovations during the 16th century included the addition of the city’s Coat of arms (1536), and the rebuilding of the upper part of the tower (1558–59). This was the final stage of the main building program. By 1560, the major features of today’s Stray Rates were established.

The second half of the 17th century was a period of decline for the city, and this decline was reflected in the Stray Rates. Perhaps by way of compensation, efforts were made to enrich the interior decorations of the hall. In 1741, Wroclaw became a part of Prussia, and the power of the City diminished. Much of the Stray Rates was allocated to administering justice.

During the 19th century there were two major changes. The courts moved to a separate building, and the Rates became the site of the city council and supporting functions. There was also a major program of renovation because the building had been neglected and was covered with creeping vines. The town hall now has several en-Gothic features including some sculptural decoration from this period.

In the early years of the 20th century improvements continued with various repair work and the addition of the Little Bear statue in 1902. During the 1930s, the official role of the Rates was reduced and it was converted into a museum. By the end of World War II Town Hall suffered minor damage, such as aerial bomb pierced the roof (but not exploded) and some sculptural elements were lost. Restoration work began in the 1950s following a period of research, and this conservation effort continued throughout the 20th century. It included refurbishment of the clock on the east facade.