Špilberk Castle is an integral feature of the city of Brno right in its heart. It stands on a steep rocky hill above the historic city center. It was built in the 13th century as a royal castle and the seat of margraves, but it did not really become that until a hundred years later. Sometime in 1279, the name of the hill was first mentioned, which was later transferred to the castle. In the 14th century there was a short, but very famous and cheerful period, when Špilberk played an important role as a residence, thanks to the government of the Moravian Luxembourg. After several decades, however, his fame is declining and his military significance is coming to the fore.
Information for visitors
Interesting facts Špilberk Castle
The end of the 15th century meant a great decline and decay for the castle. It was gradually stopped and none of its temporary owners cared about any maintenance. In 1560, it was bought and then sold to the city of Brno by Moravian estates, who were aware of its importance, but in only sixty years, Špilberk was confiscated by Emperor Ferdinand II. and returned to the land.
The Thirty Years' War brought the castle dilapidated again. It almost seemed that it would not be better when everything turned around during the invasion and occupation of Moravia by the Swedish army in the middle of the 17th century. The fortifications of the town and the castle were quickly repaired, and he was then able to triumphantly resist the siege of the multiple Swedish superiority for three months. That was when its strategic importance was confirmed. Over the next hundred years, Špilberk was rebuilt into the largest fortress in Moravia, and the local military commanders held the position of commanding generals in Moravia.
Later, Špilberk became more famous for its prison history. The prison had functioned here before, but at the end of the 18th century it was changed from a fortress prison to a civilian one for the most serious criminals and also to political prisoners. The castle soon received the unfortunate nickname "Dungeon of Nations". Over time, however, it was transformed again into a military barracks, which it remained practically until the middle of the last century. That is, with breaks during the two world wars, when he again served as a prison. From 1960, the castle became the seat of the Brno City Museum.
Today, the expositions of the historical and cultural heritage of the city of Brno as well as the famous casemates invite you to visit the castle. In the small courtyard, there is an interesting large carillon on the back wall, which plays one of 32 beautiful songs every hour during the day, which is worth waiting for. Directly in front of it is a medieval well, the depth of which reaches almost 112 m. It is thus one of the deepest castle wells in our country. The massive walls of the fortifications also deserve admiration, from which you can overlook the city and its surroundings like the back of your hand. Around the whole castle, on the slopes of the hill, you can then go for a walk on one of the many paths in a romantic landscape park with an area of 17 hectares. The castle often hosts various cultural events, theaters, concerts, celebrations and more.
Author: Martina Limbergová