Burghausen Castle

Burghausen Castle in Burghausen, Upper Bavaria, is the longest castle complex in the world (1051 m), confirmed by the Guinness World Record company.[1]

Burghausen - Hauptburg (1)
Palas of the Castle of Burghausen
Burghausen old town
City and castle of Burghausen seen from the Austrian side of the River Salzach


The castle hill was settled as early as the Bronze Age. The castle (which was founded before 1025) was transferred to the Wittelsbachs after the death of the last count of Burghausen, Gebhard II, in 1168. In 1180 they were appointed dukes of Bavaria and the castle was extended under Duke Otto I of Wittelsbach.

With the first partition of Bavaria in 1255, Burghausen Castle became the second residence of the dukes of Lower Bavaria, the main residence being Landshut. The work on the main castle commenced in 1255 under Duke Henry XIII (1253–1290). In 1331 Burghausen and its castle passed to Otto IV, Duke of Lower Bavaria.

Under the dukes of Bavaria-Landshut (1392-1503), the fortifications were extended around the entire castle hill. Starting with Margarete of Austria, the deported wife of the despotic Duke Henry XVI (1393–1450), the castle became the residence of the Duke's consorts and widows, and also a stronghold for the ducal treasures. In 1447 Louis VII, Duke of Bavaria died in the castle as Henry's prisoner. Under Duke Georg of Bavaria (1479–1503) the work was completed and Burghausen Castle became the strongest fortress of the region.

After the reunification of Bavaria in 1505 with the Landshut War of Succession the castle had military importance, and due to the threat of the Ottoman Empire it was subsequently modernised. During the Thirty Years War Gustav Horn was kept imprisoned in the castle from 1634 to 1641. After the Treaty of Teschen in 1779 Burghausen Castle became a border castle. During the Napoleonic Wars the castle suffered some destruction. The 'Liebenwein tower' was occupied by the painter Maximilian Liebenwein from 1899 until his death. He decorated the interior in the Art Nouveau style.[2]


The gothic castle comprises the main castle with the inner courtyard and five outer courtyards.

The outermost point of the main castle is the Palas with the ducal private rooms. Today it houses the castle museum, including late Gothic paintings of the Bavarian State Picture Collection. On the town side of the main castle next to the donjon are the gothic inner Chapel of St. Elizabeth (1255) and the Dürnitz (knights' hall) with its two vaulted halls. Opposite the Dürnitz are the wings of the Duchess' residence.

The first outer courtyard protected the main castle and also included the stables, the brewery and the bakery. The second courtyard houses the large Arsenal building (1420) and the gunsmith's tower. This yard is protected by the dominant Saint George's Gate (1494). The Grain Tower and the Grain Measure Tower were used for stabling and to store animal food; they belong to the third courtyard. The main sight of the fourth courtyard is the late Gothic outer Chapel of St. Hedwig (1479–1489). The court officials and craftsmen worked and lived in the fifth courtyard, which was once protected by a strong fortification. In 1800 this fortification was destroyed by the French under Michel Ney.

The Pulverturm ("Powder Tower", constructed before 1533) protected the castle in the western valley next to the Wöhrsee lake, an old backwater of the river. A battlement connects this tower with the main castle.

Images of the castle

Burg zu burghausen
Panoramic view of the castle (view from east)
Burghausen von Westen
Panoramic view of the castle (view from west)


  1. ^ "Longest castle". Guinness World Records. Retrieved 2016-03-21.
  2. ^ Maximilian Liebenwein - Ein Jugendstilmaler zwischen München und Wien, in: Webpräsenz des Stadtmuseums Burghausen

External links

Coordinates: 48°09′22″N 12°49′44″E / 48.15611°N 12.82889°E

Amalia of Saxony, Duchess of Bavaria

Amalia of Saxony (4 April 1436 – 19 November 1501) was a princess of Saxony and by marriage Duchess of Bavaria-Landshut.


Bavaria-Landshut (German: Bayern-Landshut) was a duchy in the Holy Roman Empire from 1353 to 1503.

Bavarian State Painting Collections

The Bavarian State Painting Collections (German: Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen), based in Munich, oversees the collections of artworks held by the Free State of Bavaria. Works include paintings, sculpture, prints, photographs, video art and installation art. These pieces are on display in numerous galleries and museums throughout Bavaria.


Burghausen may refer to several places in Germany:

Burghausen, Altötting, a town in southeastern Bavaria

Burghausen Castle

Burghausen bei Münnerstadt, part of Münnerstadt in northern Bavaria

Burghausen bei Freising, part of Kirchdorf an der Amper in central Bavaria

Burghausen bei Schweinfurt, part of Wasserlosen in northern Bavaria

Burghausen (Leipzig), a suburb of Leipzig city in Saxony.

SV Wacker Burghausen, a German football team.

Burghausen, Altötting

Burghausen is the largest town in the Altötting district of Upper Bavaria in Germany. It is situated on the Salzach river, near the border with Austria. Burghausen Castle rests along a ridgeline, and is the longest castle in the world (1,043 m).


A dirnitz (German: Dürnitz or Türnitz, from the Slavic dorniza = "heated parlour") or Knights' Hall was the heatable area of a medieval castle. It was usually a single large room on the ground floor of the palas below the Great Hall. It was often expensively furnished and had a decorative vault. Occasionally it also described the cabinet (Kemenate) or an entire hall building. The term is German.

From the mid-15th century, the dirnitz, if used as a reception or gathering room or as a courtroom, was sometimes also called a courtroom (Hofstube).

Typical examples of a dirnitz may be seen at the Wartburg and Heinfels Castle. The dirnitz at Burghausen Castle is one of the rare examples where the heatable hall is on an upper storey.

Gustav Horn, Count of Pori

Count Gustav Horn af Björneborg (October 22, 1592 – May 10, 1657) was a Swedish nobleman, military officer and Governor-general.

He was appointed member of the Royal Council in 1625, Field Marshal in 1628, Governor General of Livonia in 1652 and Lord High Constable since 1653. In the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648), he was instrumental as a commander in securing victory at the Battle of Breitenfeld, in 1631. He was High Councillor of the realm in 1625, elevated to the rank of field marshal in 1628, and sometimes commander-in-chief of Swedish forces in Germany during Thirty Years' War. After the war, he served as Governor-General of Livonia 1652, President of War department and Lord High Constable in 1653. In 1651, Queen Christina created him Count of Björneborg (Horn af Björneborg).

Hedwig Jagiellon, Duchess of Bavaria

Hedwig Jagiellon (Polish: Jadwiga Jagiellonka, Lithuanian: Jadvyga Jogailaitė, German: Hedwig Jagiellonica) (21 September 1457 – 18 February 1502), baptized as "Hedwigis", was a Polish princess and member of the Jagiellonian dynasty, as well as Duchess of Bavaria by marriage.

Born in Kraków, she was the eldest daughter of King Casimir IV of Poland of Poland and Archduchess Elisabeth of Austria.

Henry XIII, Duke of Bavaria

Henry I of Lower Bavaria, member of the Wittelsbach dynasty (19 November 1235 – 3 February 1290 in Burghausen) was Duke of Lower Bavaria. As Duke of Bavaria, he is also called Henry XIII.

Henry XVI, Duke of Bavaria

Henry XVI of Bavaria (1386 – 30 July 1450, Landshut), (German: Heinrich der Reiche, Herzog von Bayern-Landshut), since 1393 Duke of Bavaria-Landshut. He was a son of duke Frederick and his wife Maddalena Visconti, a daughter of Bernabò Visconti.

House of Wittelsbach

The House of Wittelsbach (German pronunciation: [ˈvɪtəlsbax]) is a European royal family and a German dynasty from Bavaria.

Members of the family reigned as Dukes of Merania (1153–1180/82), Dukes, Electors and Kings of Bavaria (1180–1918), Counts Palatine of the Rhine (1214–1803 and 1816–1918), Margraves of Brandenburg (1323–1373), Counts of Holland, Hainaut and Zeeland (1345–1432), Elector-Archbishops of Cologne (1583–1761), Dukes of Jülich and Berg (1614–1794/1806), Kings of Sweden (1441–1448 and 1654–1720) and Dukes of Bremen-Verden (1654–1719).

The family also provided two Holy Roman Emperors (1328–1347/1742–1745), one King of the Romans (1400–1410), two Anti-Kings of Bohemia (1619–20/1742–43), one King of Hungary (1305–1309), one King of Denmark and Norway (1440–1447) and one King of Greece (1832–1862).

The family's head, since 1996, is Franz, Duke of Bavaria.

List of castles in Bavaria

Numerous castles are found in the German state of Bavaria. These buildings, some of which have a history of over 1,000 years, were the setting of historical events, domains of famous personalities and are still imposing buildings to this day.

This list encompasses castles described in German as Burg (castle), Festung (fort/fortress), Schloss (manor house) and Palais/Palast (palace). Many German castles after the middle ages were mainly built as royal or ducal palaces rather than as a fortified building.

Maximilian Liebenwein

Maximilian Albert Josef Liebenwein (11 April 1869 – 17 July 1926) was an Austrian-German painter, graphic artist and book illustrator, in the Impressionist and Art Nouveau styles. He spent significant time in Vienna, Munich and Burghausen, Altötting, and took an active part in the artistic community in all three places. He was an important member of the Vienna Secession, becoming its vice-president, and exhibiting with the group many times.


Rampelsberg is a mountain of Bavaria, Germany. The Rampelsberg is up to 555 m above sea level. NHN high elevation in the north of Rupertiwinkels in Upper Bavaria . It borders Palling, Taching, and Tittmoning . The Rampelsberg is heavily forested. Southeast of the Ramelsberg there is a gravel pit of Oppacher & Son fresh concrete GmbH & Co. KG.

Ridge castle

A ridge castle (from the German word Kammburg) is a medieval fortification built on a ridge or the crest of mountain or hill chain.Ridge castles were not a common type of fortification. While castles of this type were relatively well protected, they had the disadvantage that they could be attacked from two sides. The similar spur castle, located at the end of a ridge, is protected by drop offs on three sides.

For mutual protection, several such castles could be built within sight of one another.


Travertine ( TRA-və-tin, also TRA-vər-teen) is a form of limestone deposited by mineral springs, especially hot springs. Travertine often has a fibrous or concentric appearance and exists in white, tan, cream-colored, and even rusty varieties. It is formed by a process of rapid precipitation of calcium carbonate, often at the mouth of a hot spring or in a limestone cave. In the latter, it can form stalactites, stalagmites, and other speleothems. It is frequently used in Italy and elsewhere as a building material.

Travertine is a terrestrial sedimentary rock, formed by the precipitation of carbonate minerals from solution in ground and surface waters, and/or geothermally heated hot-springs. Similar (but softer and extremely porous) deposits formed from ambient-temperature water are known as tufa.

Upper Bavaria

Upper Bavaria (German: Oberbayern, Austro-Bavarian: Obabayern) is one of the seven administrative districts of Bavaria, Germany.


A Zwinger (German pronunciation: [ˈt͡svɪŋɐ]) is an open area between two defensive walls that is used for defensive purposes. Zwingers were built in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Period to improve the defence of castles and town walls. The term is German and usually left untranslated. However, it is sometimes rendered as "outer courtyard" presumably referring to the subsequent role of a Zwinger as a castle's defences became redundant and it was converted into a palace or schloss, however, this belies its original purpose as a form of killing ground for the defence. The word is linked with zwingen, "to force", perhaps because the Zwinger forced an enemy to negotiate it before assaulting the main defensive line. Essenwein states that the "main purpose of this feature was so that the besieging force could not reach the actual castle wall very easily with battering rams or belfries, but had to stop at the lower, outer wall; also that two ranks of archers, behind and above one another, could fire upon the approaching enemy"


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