Pszczyna (zámek)

Article

May 28, 2022

Pszczyna Castle (Czech: Pština, German Pleß), also known as Polish Versailles, is located in Upper Silesia in the Silesian Voivodeship in Poland, in the town of Pszczyna. The castle was built in the 11th or 12th century on the trade route from Krakow to Silesia, Cieszyn and southern Europe. In the Middle Ages, the chateau was owned by the princes of Opole-Ratibor, in 1548–1765 it belonged to the Silesian Promnitz family, in 1765–1847 to the princes Anhal-Kóthen-Pless and from 1847 to the princes Hochberg von Pless of Książ. In the years 1870–1876, they rebuilt the chateau into its current architectural form in the Neo-Baroque style. The castle complex together with the English-style garden has an area of ​​156 hectares. In 1946, the Pszczyna Castle Museum was opened in the chateau. Unlike many other castles and chateaux in Silesia, which were destroyed in or immediately after World War II, Pszczyna Castle has preserved its original furnishings and furniture, which today are among the most valuable monuments of residential architecture in Poland.

History

The chronicler Henryk Schaeffer (lived in the first half of the 19th century) states in the chronicle of the Free State of Pszczyna that the castle was built in the 11th or 12th century. Piast princes to protect the trade route connecting Moravia with Kievan Rus. The castle also served as a hunting lodge and retained this function until the 20th century. The land of Pszczyna belonged to Lesser Poland, it became part of Silesia in 1178, when Prince Casimir II of Kraków. The righteous donated to Prince Mieszko I. Platonogius, Prince of Ratibor, and from 1202 he was part of the Principality of Opole-Ratibor. In 1327, Prince Leszek of Ratibor had to submit to the Czech King Jan of Luxembourg, and the country became part of Bohemia. In 1336, after Leszek's death, the principality passed to his brother-in-law, Prince Nicholas II. Opavský from the Přemyslid dynasty. The first written mention of a brick castle dates from the first half of the 15th century. and state that Helena Korybutówna (1424–1449), daughter of the Lithuanian prince Korybut Dymitra, who became the wife of the prince of Ratibor Jan II of Ratibor, lived here. Železný, who gave her the area where the towns of Pszczyna, Mikolów, Bieruń and Myslowice were located after the wedding. Helena built two Gothic-style brick buildings (today's east and west wings) on the site of a hunting lodge in Pszczyna, which she connected with two parallel walls, built two defensive towers on the south side, fortified the whole complex with defensive ramparts and a moat Apple juice. To this day, Gothic cellars and the rough walls of the Gothic bastion, which was used by later owners as a secret staircase, have been preserved under parts of the chateau. The exact date of completion of the construction is not known, but it must have happened before 1433, because that year the castle withstood the invasion of the Hussites. Until the end of the 14th century. the castle was owned by Piast princes from the Opole-Ratibor branch, since 1480 the castle belonged to the Czech Přemyslids of Opava, who were replaced by the princes of Těšín, and in 1517 the castle Pszczyna and Pszczyn lands were sold for financial reasons by Těšín prince Casimir II to the Hungarian nobleman Alexis Thurzo, who then sold the chateau to his brother Ján Thurzo. Pszczyna became the capital of the Free State, which included Pszyczyna, Mikolów, Bieruń and, until 1536, Myslowice and 77 other villages. almost two centuries (1548–1765), and which gradually modernized and rebuilt the castle in the Renaissance style. From 1765 to 1847 the castle belonged to the princes Anthalt-Köthen-Pless and from 1874 to the princes Hochberg von Pless of Książa, who in 1870�