Konopiste Castle in the Czech Republic (Topic)

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Konopiste Castle in the Czech Republic

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Konosishte Castle is located near Benesov, just 50 kilometers from Prague.

The castle was built by Bishop Tobias of Benesov in the 13th century. Initially, the building was a Gothic palace, which was later reconstructed more than once. The castle was built as a powerful Gothic fortress, modeled on a French castle, and had round towers at the corners, allowing maximum protection during sieges. Initially seven towers were built: one – in the center of the north wall, four – in the corners, two – in the center of the short east and west walls. Earthen ramparts and a ditch were also dug for strengthening.

Until 1327, the castle was owned by the Benesovic family, later the castle passed into the possession of the Sternberk family, which also owned the Cesky Sternberk castle. In the 17th century, Konosiste Castle was rebuilt and acquired the late Gothic style and even later the Late Renaissance style.

During the Hussite Wars, Konopiste Castle was under a long siege that lasted about 17 months. In 1468, the castle was conquered by King Jiri of Podebrady.

During the Thirteen Years War, the castle was captured and plundered by the Swedish army, after which it fell into decay. Subsequently, the castle was purchased at auction by the Czech nobleman Jan Josef Vrtba. In the 18th century, Konosishte Castle was rebuilt in the Baroque style. During the reconstruction, the drawbridge was replaced with a stone one, a new entrance was cut in the eastern tower, and the height of the towers was reduced to the level of castle buildings. In addition, the southern wing was built.

At the end of the 19th century, the castle was acquired by Archduke Franz Ferdinand d ’ Este – heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. In 1889-1894, on his initiative, the castle was rebuilt again. The reconstruction work was carried out under the guidance of the Viennese architects Franz Schmorantz and Josef Mokker. Being a noble hunting lover, the duke installed a mechanical shooting range in the castle, created `` hunting corridors '' decorated with stuffed animals, and expanded his collection of armor and weapons. A picturesque English-style park with a rose garden, marble statues and   terraces.

In 1914, after the murder of the Duke, the castle, and the collections preserved in it were inherited by his children. Since 1921, the castle has been the property of Czechoslovakia. From 1943 to 1945, the general headquarters of the SS troops in Bohemia was located here.

At the end of World War II, part of the collections were removed from the castle, but in 1946 most were returned to Konopiste.

Nowadays, the castle is open to tourists. The castle walls contain a large collection of art, hunting trophies, armor, weapons, etc.    


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Topic: Konopiste Castle in the Czech Republic.Konopiste Castle in the Czech Republic

Author: Kelly Costine