The Visconti Castle of Binasco is famed for having been the prison of Beatrice di Tenda (Duchess of Milan and wife of Filippo Maria Visconti), who was arrested and there sentenced to death for adultery in 1418. Today it is the seat of the municipality of Binasco.
The castle originated from a stronghold built by the Visconti in the 14th century to take care of their land in the area. Probably between 1315 and 1319 the nearby church of Saint Stephan was founded and the castle built by Luchino Visconti, Lord of Milan. The first mention of a castle in Binasco dates back to 1329, when it was used by Azzone Visconti and his uncle Giovanni as a prison for their political opponents.
In the 17th century the castle underwent transformations and restorations. At the end of the 19th century it was sacked during the Napoleonic age and in 1869 hit by a ruinous fire. The current aspect is the result of subsequent restorations that gave back the sense of the ancient fortress. Two towers are still visible along the south front.References:
The Château du Haut-Koenigsbourg is situated in a strategic area on a rocky spur overlooking the Upper Rhine Plain, it was used by successive powers from the Middle Ages until the Thirty Years' War when it was abandoned. From 1900 to 1908 it was rebuilt at the behest of the German kaiser Wilhelm II. Today it is a major tourist site, attracting more than 500,000 visitors a year.
The first records of a castle built by the Hohenstaufens date back to 1147. The fortress changed its name to Koenigsburg (royal castle) around 1157. The castle was handed over to the Tiersteins by the Habsburgs following its destruction in 1462. They rebuilt and enlarged it, installing a defensive system designed to withstand artillery fire.
The fortification work accomplished over the 15th century did not suffice to keep the Swedish artillery at bay during the Thirty Years War, and the defences were overrun.