#113 Vajdahunyad [Corvinesti]
1320 plus 1409-1453
This is not an official Lego site.
very impressive castle of Hunedoara, Romania, was first
built by the Anjou family in 1320 atop much older Roman
fortifications on the bank of the River Zlasti. In 1409
Emperor Sigismund of Luxemburg gave the castle to the
Vlachi Duke Sorb [Serb] of the Corvin family as reward
for military services. Sorb passed the castle on the his
son Vajk Corvin. Vajk's son Iancu Corvin [1387-1456][aka
Johannes Corvin de Hunyad; Iancu de Hunedoara]
extensively remodeled the castle, adding 4 circular and 3
rectangular protective towers between 1441-6. From 1446
to 1453 Iancu also added the Chapel and the Knight's Hall,
its roof and graceful ribbed vaults supported by five
marble columns. As Regent of Hungary, Iancu de Hunedoara
fought aggressively against the Ottoman Turks, alongside
his ally Vlad Dracul, who ascended to the throne of
Wallachia in 1456. Constantinople fell to the Turks in
1455 after a long seige.
1456, upon the death of King Iancu, the throne of Hungary
and Romania was contested by various parties, especially
Iancu's eldest son, Laszlo Corvin; the Habsburg King of
Bohemia Ladislaus Posthumus; and a group of barons. With
the beheading of Laszlo and the death (by poisoning?) of
Ladislaus a couple months later, in 1458 the 15 year old
Matei [Matthias] Corvin [1443-1490] became king of
Transilvania and Hungary. Matei surprised the barons by
ruled ably, becoming a very popular king, and
additionally transformed his castle into a noble
residence, adding the beautiful Matei Wing with its
renaissance loggia. He continued his father's strife with
the Turks. Vlad Dracul had been successful against the
Turks along the Danube River, but the Ottoman Empire
replied with a massive invasion of southern Romania (Wallachia).
Vlad fled across the Transilvanian Alps and sought refuge
at Vajdahunyad, where he was thought to be an enemy and
imprisoned for 7 years. While it may be apocryphal, Vlad
is reputed to have impaled mice and spoken with bats
during his detention. The Prince was eventually
recognized as a staunch ally and released. Vlad married
King Matei's cousin's sister, and with the support of the
Hungarian army, successfully drove the Turks out of
Wallachia, albeit temporarily.
remained in the Corvin family until 1508. There were
reportedly 22 subsequent owners until the castle became
the property of the Habsburgs again in 1725. One owner,
Gabriel Bethlen, Prince of Transilvania, in 1618
constructed the Bethlen Wing. Kata Bethlen, wife of the
Hungarian Governor of Transilvania, was the last owner.
Several fires damaged Vajdahunyad, the last in 1854.
Major restorations occurred from 1868-1874 and again from
1956-1968. The castle was turned into a museum in 1974.
Further restoration work began in 1997, but was
reportedly delayed when "unseeable inhabitants
roaming the castle" drove the workers away.
Hunedoara, on the north slope of the Poiana Rusca portion
of the Transilvanian Alps, is the most important steel
and iron center of Romania.
near the main
postern bridge on the
backside of the castle [see
photo 2 above]
in front of the Matei Wing
in the small courtyard
behind the Matei Wing
Hall, built by Iancu
of the Lego Model
Begun November 12, 2006
outline from the northwest
on November 12
outline from the SSE
November 22 the castle can
be detected along the river bank
beginnings of the dunjon and
its causeway start to take shape...
of the Lego Model
Built November 2006 - January 2007
View with postern bridge
View with archers
|The front of Vajdahunyad Castle||The bridge across the river Zlasti||Thie hoardings atop the entrance tower||Farmers off to work from the postern gate|
|Courtyard looking north||Courtyard with chapel and loggia||Courtyard looking south||Concert on a battlemented terrace!|
My working plans are fairly incomplete, but frankly I doubt anyone will need these plans.
Other Vajdahunyad [Corvinesti] Castle pages:
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