2011. szeptember 26., hétfő

Miskolc - Diósgyőr Castle

Diosgyor castle started life most likely as an earthwork castle in the 12th century and which was later destroyed during the Mongol invasion of 1241–1242. The current castle, which stands today, is a result of an order by King Bela IV who, after the Mongols withdrew from the country, ordered that every hill top had to have a castle constructed upon it. Diosgyor was oval in shape with a rounded donjon, encompassed by a polygonal outer wall.
The castles hey day was during the rule of Louis I, who modernised and refurbished the castle. These modernisations included an inner castle which was built around a rectangular courtyard and had four towers, one on each angle. The first floor contained the storerooms, whilst the second floor contained the rooms and the Knights' Hall. As well as the fore mentioned, the castle was surrounded by a four meter deep moat. The modernisation programme was finally finished during the rule of Mary, who was Louis’s daughter.
In 1364 the nearby town of Miskolc came under the control of the Diósgyõr estate. Whilst in 1381, the Peace Treaty of Turin was signed at Diosgyor castle. The treaty compelled the Italian town of Venice to raise the flag of the Anjou dynasty in St. Mark's square every Sunday.
Diósgyõr castle started to loose its status when the personal union between Hungary and Poland ended (Louis had shared the two countries between his two daughters Mary and Jadwiga.) Over the perusing centuries the castle became a holiday home for the ruling monarchy.
During the time of the Ottoman occupation of the southern territories of Hungary, Diosgyor castle was further fortified against the advancing armies. The present ruling family turned it into a large fortress, and had an Italian-style rondelle constructed in the north-western tower with enforced bastions replacing the smaller turrets. These were the final alterations to take place at the castle as from 1564 the owners changed frequently, and the castle slowly deteriorated.
In 1596 the Ottoman army defeated the Christian army at Mezõkeresztes with Diósgyõr falling into the hands of the advancing army. For the next 90 years, Diósgyõr was under the control of the Ottoman Empire until 1687 when it was freed from Turkish rule.
In 1953 restoration of Diosgyor castle was started with only the areas being restored were those threatened with collapse. In the north-eastern tower there is an exhibition of the history of the castle, a weapons exhibition and the waxworks showing the singing of the Torino Peace Treaty. The south-western tower is in ruins.
Sadly, today instead of the rolling hills and countryside of it former past, Diosgyor castle is surrounded by concrete buildings and the trappings of a modern city.
source: Guide to Castles of Europe

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