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The Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork[1] (Polish: zamek w Malborku; German: Ordensburg Marienburg), located in the Polish town of Malbork, is the largest castle in the world measured by land area.[2] It was originally built by the Teutonic Knights, a German Roman Catholic religious order of crusaders, in a form of an Ordensburg fortress. The Order named it Marienburg (Mary's Castle). The town which grew around it was also named Marienburg. In 1466, both castle and town became part of Royal Prussia, a province of Poland. It served as one of the several Polish royal residences, interrupted by several years of Swedish occupation, and fulfilling this function until Prussia claimed the castle as a result of the First Partition of Poland in 1772. Heavily damaged after World War II, the castle was renovated under the auspices of modern-day Poland in the second half of the 20th century and most recently in 2016. Nowadays, the castle hosts exhibitions and serves as a museum. The castle is a classic example of a medieval fortress and, on its completion in 1406, was the world's largest brick castle.[3] UNESCO designated the "Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork" and the Malbork Castle Museum a World Heritage Site in December 1997.[4] It is one of two World Heritage Sites in the region with origins in the Teutonic Order. The other is the "Medieval Town of Toruń", founded in 1231 as the site of the castle Thorn. Malbork Castle is also one of Poland's official national Historic Monuments (Pomnik historii), as designated on 16 September 1994. Its listing is maintained by the National Heritage Board of Poland.

Contents

1 History

1.1 Origins 1.2 Residence of the Polish kings 1.3 After the Partitions of Poland 1.4 After World War II

2 Burials in the mausoleum under the Chapel of St. Anne 3 Gallery 4 See also 5 References 6 Further reading 7 External links

History[edit] Origins[edit]

Brick Gothic details of the castle

The castle was built by the Teutonic Order after the conquest of Old Prussia. Its main purpose was to strengthen their own control of the area following the Order's 1274 suppression of the Great Prussian Uprising of the Baltic tribes. No contemporary documents survive relating to its construction, so instead the castle's phases have been worked out through the study of architecture and the Order's administrative records and later histories. The work lasted until around 1300, under the auspices of Commander Heinrich von Wilnowe.[5] The castle is located on the southeastern bank of the river Nogat. It was named Marienburg after Mary, patron saint of the religious Order. The Order had been created in Acre (present-day Israel). When this last stronghold of the Crusades fell to Muslim Arabs, the Order moved its headquarters to Venice before arriving in Prussia. Malbork became more important in the aftermath of the Teutonic Knights' conquest of Gdańsk (Danzig) and Pomerania in 1308. The Order's administrative centre was moved to Marienburg from Elbing (now Elbląg). The Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights, Siegfried von Feuchtwangen, who arrived in Marienburg from Venice, undertook the next phase of the fortress' construction.[5] In 1309, in the wake of the papal persecution of the Knights Templar and the Teutonic takeover of Danzig, Feuchtwangen relocated his headquarters to the Prussian part of the Order's monastic state. He chose the site of Marienburg conveniently located on the Nogat in the Vistula Delta. As with most cities of the time, the new centre was dependent on water for transportation.

Array of iron warriors in the courtyard

The castle was expanded several times to house the growing number of Knights. Soon, it became the largest fortified Gothic building in Europe,[6] on a nearly 21-hectare (52-acre) site. The castle has several subdivisions and numerous layers of defensive walls. It consists of three separate castles - the High, Middle and Lower Castles, separated by multiple dry moats and towers. The castle once housed approximately 3,000 "brothers in arms". The outermost castle walls enclose 21 ha (52 acres), four times the enclosed area of Windsor Castle. The developed part of the property designated as a World Heritage Site is 18.038 ha (44.57 acres).[7]

Vorburg with rampart added under Hochmeister Heinrich von Plauen, 15th century

The favourable position of the castle on the river Nogat allowed easy access by barges and trading ships arriving from the Vistula and the Baltic Sea. During their governance, the Teutonic Knights collected river tolls from passing ships, as did other castles along the rivers. They controlled a monopoly on the trade of amber. When the city became a member of the Hanseatic League, many Hanseatic meetings were held there. In the summer of 1410, the castle was besieged following the Order's defeat by the armies of Władysław II Jagiełło and Vytautas the Great (Witold) at the Battle of Grunwald. Heinrich von Plauen successfully led the defence in the Siege of Marienburg (1410), during which the city outside was razed. In 1456, during the Thirteen Years' War, the Order – facing opposition from its cities for raising taxes to pay ransoms for expenses associated with its wars against Kingdom of Poland – could no longer manage financially. Meanwhile, Polish General Stibor de Poniec of Ostoja raised funds from Danzig for a new campaign against them. Learning that the Order's Bohemian mercenaries had not been paid, Stibor convinced them to leave. He reimbursed them with money raised in Danzig.[8] Following the departure of the mercenaries, King Casimir IV Jagiellon entered the castle in triumph in 1457, and in May, granted Danzig several privileges in gratitude for the town's assistance and involvement in the Thirteen Years' War (1454–66) as well as for the funds collected for the mercenaries that left.[9]

Toilet tower (dansker)

The mayor of the town around the castle, Bartholomäus Blume, resisted the Polish forces for three more years, but the Poles captured and sentenced him to death in 1460.[10] A monument to Blume was erected in 1864.[11] Residence of the Polish kings[edit] In 1466 both castle and town became part of Royal Prussia, a province of Poland. It served as one of the several Polish royal residences, fulfilling this function until the Partitions of Poland in 1772. During this period the Tall Castle served as the castle's supply storehouse, while the Great Refectory was a place for balls, feasts, and other royal events. During the Thirty Years' War, in 1626 and 1629 Swedish forces occupied the castle. They invaded and occupied it again 1656 to 1660 during the Deluge. After the Partitions of Poland[edit]

Castle in 1890/1905, during the German Empire

After Prussia and the Russian Empire made the First Partition of Poland in 1772, the town became part of the Kingdom of Prussia province of West Prussia. At that time, the officials used the rather neglected castle as a poorhouse and barracks for the Prussian Army. In 1794 David Gilly, a Prussian architect and head of the Oberbaudepartement, made a structural survey of the castle, to decide about its future use or demolition. Gilly's son, Friedrich Gilly, produced several engravings of the castle and its architecture, which he exhibited in Berlin and had published by Friedrich Frick from 1799 to 1803. These engravings led the Prussian public to "rediscover" the castle and the history of the Teutonic Knights.[12] Johann Dominicus Fiorillo published another edition of the engravings on 12 February 1803, also wanting to encourage public interest. Max von Schenkendorf criticized the defacement of the castle. Throughout the Napoleonic period, the army used the castle as a hospital and arsenal. After the War of the Sixth Coalition, the castle became a symbol of Prussian history and national consciousness. Initiated by Theodor von Schön, Oberpräsident of West Prussia, in 1816, restoration of the castle was begun.[13] In 1910 the Naval Academy Mürwik in Flensburg was built. The Marienburg was a pattern for this new Red Castle.[14] The restoration of the Marienburg was undertaken in stages until World War II started.[15] With the rise of Adolf Hitler to power in the early 1930s, the Nazis used the castle as a destination for annual pilgrimages of both the Hitler Youth and the League of German Girls. The Teutonic Castle at Marienburg served as a blueprint for the Order Castles of the Third Reich built under Hitler's reign.[16] In 1945 during World War II combat in the area, more than half the castle was destroyed. After World War II[edit] At the conclusion of the war, the city of Marienburg (Malbork) and castle became again a part of Poland. The castle has been mostly reconstructed, with restoration ongoing since 1962 following a fire in 1959 which caused further damage. A significant recent restorative effort was of the main church in the castle (i.e., The Blessed Virgin Mary Church). After being restored just before World War II and then destroyed in battle, it was in a state of disrepair until a new restoration was completed in April 2016. Malbork Castle remains the largest brick building in Europe.

Panoramic image of Malbork Castle from the Northwestern bank of the river Nogat

Burials in the mausoleum under the Chapel of St. Anne[edit]

Dietrich von Altenburg Heinrich Dusemer Winrich von Kniprode Konrad von Jungingen Michael Küchmeister von Sternberg Konrad von Erlichshausen

Gallery[edit]

General view.

Exterior view of one of the entrances.

Gate over the main entrance.

Interior view of the tower over the main entrance.

Exterior view of the castle walls.

Main chapel.

Sculptures at the entrance of St Anne's chapel.

Windows in the cloisters.

Corridor of the cloisters.

Gravestones in St. Anne's Chapel

See also[edit]

Trakai Island Castle, similar architecture

References[edit]

Notes

^ "Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork - UNESCO World Heritage Centre". Whc.unesco.org. 7 December 1997. Retrieved 25 July 2012.  ^ Malbork Castle (with an area of 143,591 square meters), the largest castle in the world by KML Area Calculator. Touropia, the Travel List Website: "10 Largest Castles in the World." Accessed 6 April 2011. ^ Emery 2007, p. 139 ^ Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork, World Heritage Site. ID 847. Year 1997 UNESCO, Europe and North America ^ a b Emery 2007, p. 143 ^ Stephen Batchelor (21 July 2010). Medieval History For Dummies. John Wiley & Sons. p. 363. ISBN 978-0-470-74783-4. Retrieved 25 July 2012.  ^ "Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork", WHC-08/32.COM/8D, UNESCO, Paris, 22 May 2008. ^ http://www.poniec.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=26&Itemid=45, As per Antoni Eckstein, History of Poniec, published in "Roczniki Historyczne", v.II, p.92 of IH PAN (Institute of History, Polish Academy of Science), 1926 ^ Andrzej Nowak and Dariusz Osowski, Królewski herb Gdańska, Album Polski.pl ^ Matthias Weber (2003). Preußen in Ostmitteleuropa: Geschehensgeschichte und Verstehensgeschichte. Oldenbourg Verlag. p. 193. ISBN 978-3-486-56718-2. Retrieved 25 July 2012.  ^ von Rudolf Reide (1864). Altpreussische Monatsschrift. Thomas & Oppermann.  ^ Boockman 1992, p. 344 ^ C. Steinbrecht, Schloss Marienburg in Preussen, Berlin, 1894 ^ Flensburger Tageblatt 100 Jahre Marineschule : Das rote Schloss des deutschen Kaisers ^ Boockman 1992, pp. 36–40 ^ Shirer 1960, pp. 255–256

Bibliography

Boockmann, Hartmut (1992), "Deutsche Geschichte im Osten Europas", Ostpreußen und Westpreußen (in German), Berlin, ISBN 3-88680-212-4  Emery, Anthony (2007), "Malbork Castle – Poland" (PDF), The Castle Studies Group Journal, 21: 138–156  Shirer, William (1960), The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, Simon & Schuster, ASIN B000EA3XL4 

Further reading[edit]

Knox, Brian (1971), The Architecture of Poland, Barrie & Jenkins, ISBN 978-0-214-65211-0  Turnbull, Stephen (2003), Crusader Castles of the Teutonic Knights, Osprey, ISBN 978-1-84176-557-0 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Castle in Malbork.

Malbork Castle Museum "Malbork", Castles of Poland The Malbork Castle Virtual Tour History and photos of the Malbork castle (in Polish)

v t e

World Heritage Sites in Poland

Auschwitz-Birkenau German Nazi Concentration and Extermination Camp (1940–1945) Białowieża Forest / Belovezhskaya Pushcha (with Belarus) Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork Centennial Hall, Wrocław Churches of Peace in Jawor and Świdnica Cracow's Historic Centre Kalwaria Zebrzydowska: the Mannerist Architectural and Park Landscape Complex and Pilgrimage Park Medieval Town of Toruń Muskauer Park / Park Mużakowski (with Germany) Old City of Zamość Tarnowskie Góry Lead-Silver-Zinc Mine and its Underground Water Management System Historic Centre of Warsaw Wieliczka and Bochnia Royal Salt Mines Wooden churches of Southern Lesser Poland Wooden tserkvas of the Carpathian region in Poland and Ukraine

v t e

Royal palaces and residences of the Kingdom of Poland

Extant

Belweder Będzin Castle Bobolice Castle Chęciny Castle Copper-Roof Palace Green Gate Kazimierz Palace Lublin Castle Łazienki Palace Łęczyca Castle Malbork Castle Myślewicki Palace Niepołomice Castle Piotrków Trybunalski Castle Royal Castle, Poznań Royal Castle, Warsaw Sandomierz Castle Sanok Castle Tykocin Castle Ujazdów Castle Wawel Castle Wilanów Palace

Ruined

Chęciny Castle Nowy Sącz Castle Ogrodzieniec Castle

Demolished

Marywil Saxon Palace

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 316746626 GN

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