John's Castle

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John's Castle ( 640x480 )
John’s Castle is a romantic copy of a ruin of an old castle. It stands at the edge of Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape and it is flown off from three sides by Dyji River. It is unique due to its largeness and practical usage. It is on UNESCO World Heritage Site list.

The castle was designed by Joseph Hardmuth and Alois I. Jozef of Liechtenstein began with its building in 1801. However, in the marsh land with high level of ground water it was necessary to beat oak piles into the ground and made an oak grate on them and just then it was possible to start building. The construction was finished in 1808 by Alois’s brother Jan I. Jozef of Liechtenstein as Alois had meanwhile died. John’s Castle was supposed to be much grander but in the period of Romanism, when it was being built, it was fashionable to build only so called artificial ruins. The original project was therefore reduced according to earl’s order.

The castle was originally a hunting lodge. The lordship gathered here before their hunt and celebrated after. John’s Castle was as well the home to earl’s gamekeeper. At the end of World War II the castle burnt. It was renovated in 1957 to 1964.

The John’s Castle building is made of four towers, each of them with different ground plan. The towers are connected only by enclosure walls from three sides. There is the castle itself on the last side. Knight’s lounge on the first floor was the place where celebrations were held. Smaller, lady’s lounges were located in towers. All three floors of the castle had originally their galleries, nowadays there is one only on the first floor. The tower on south side has the balcony on the second floor and a viewpoint on the third. The two towers on north and east side were used as stabling and kennels. The first floor lodges were assigned to men who got tired during the celebration.

John’s Castle is accessible to tourists, viewings are done for small admission. Nowadays it is a place where weddings are organized. Besides that John’s Castle is a venue for annual Country festival and the courtyard is where the historical celebrations and feasts take place.
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