Castle, Stara Kamienica
Narodowy Instytut Dziedzictwa pl

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Ruins of a Silesian magnate’s castle originally erected during the middle and late Renaissance period which, back in its time, had repeatedly proven its worth both as a fortified structure and as an impressive, comfortable residence. Ever since its foundation, the castle had remained linked to the renowned noble family of von Schaffgotsch.

History

The history of the castle begins in the second half of the 16th century, as evidenced by the date 1562, which had been prominently displayed on the castle gate portal that had still been extant back in the 19th century. The man who ordered the construction of the castle was most likely the imperial counsellor Caspar II von Schaffgotsh, one of the five sons of Caspar I, who died in 1534. The fortified residence was constructed on the basis of a much earlier and less impressive building, incorporating the remnants of its walls as well as reclaimed architectural detailing. In 1634, the castle was taken away from the von Schaffgotsch family and has changed on many occasions ever since. For a few dozen years, it remained in the hands of the von Zierotin noble family from Moravia, although it was later reclaimed by the von Schaffgotsch family. In the end, the castle was lost to the blaze in 1758 and was never reconstructed. Most of the surviving castle walls have been torn down by the mid-19th century.

Description

A moated castle located approximately 200 metres to the south-west of the local church, on a small hill in the centre of the village. The building was made of split stone with some brick additions. Designed on a rectangular floor plan (approx. 30 x 40 metres), it consisted of three wings which surrounded a square courtyard from the east, south and west, with the northern side of the said courtyard being closed off by a curtain wall. A tower designed on a square floor plan projected slightly ahead of the surface of the western wall, positioned on the axis of the narrower side of the structure. In compositional terms, the tower was counterpoised on the eastern side by the three-span stone bridge leading up to the entrance gate. The span of the bridge directly adjacent to the gate itself replaced the former drawbridge. A cloister is known to have originally ran alongside the southern and eastern wings, overlooking the courtyard. The castle had about 30 different rooms serving both residential and utility purposes, taking up three storeys in total; among these were the grand, representational halls or chambers in the southern wing. Today, all that remains of the former castle are its basements, with their vaulted ceilings of the barrel type, as well as the tower rising up to the level of the third storey, covered by the remnants of sgraffito decorations. Visitors may also spot small sections of the former peripheral walls as well as the moat and the bridge.

Traces of manor farm buildings and a Baroque gate with a figure of Hercules, dating back to 1705, are located in the vicinity of the castle.

The site is open to the public.

compiled by Piotr Roczek, Regional Branch of the National Heritage Board of Poland in Wrocław, 30-10-2014.

Bibliography

  • Słownik Geografii Turystycznej Sudetów. Vol. 4 Kotlina Jeleniogórska, M. Staffa (ed.), Wrocław 1999, pp. 455-456.
  • Zamki i dwory obronne w Sudetach, Vol. II Księstwo jaworskie, Wrocław 2009, pp. 211-217.
  • Kapałczyński W., Napierała P., Zamki, pałace i dwory Kotliny Jeleniogórskiej, Jelenia Góra-Wrocław 2005, pp. 131-132.
  • Łuczyński R., Zamki, dwory i pałace w Sudetach, Legnica 2008, pp. 358-362.

General information

  • Type: castle
  • Chronology: 2 połowę XVI w.
  • Form of protection: register of monuments
  • Address: Stara Kamienica
  • Location: Voivodeship dolnośląskie, district jeleniogórski, commune Stara Kamienica
  • Source: National Heritage Board of Poland

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