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MARIBOR CASTLE

Without the preserved stories and their storytellers, every building becomes a mere pile of bricks and stones. It is the stories of the people from the past who lived, loved, cried, were born, and died in the buildings, that breathe life into the spaces, and the storytellers will ensure that they are not forgotten.
Today's Maribor Castle is made up of two parts. The first is the administrative court of the sovereign Prince, built between 1478 and 1481, and the second is the northeastern part of the town fortification system (the castle bastion and the lodge). With the ownership of the Counts of Khisl, the final transformation of the court into a residential castle began in 1620, where, among other things, a Knights' Hall was erected and the Loreto chapel was built. After 1727, the castle passed into the ownership of the Counts of Brandis, who added a new staircase, built the upper part of the bastion, and completed the Knights' Hall. In 1871, the castle was cut in half with the layout of the present-day Castle Street. In 1933, the castle was bought by the municipality of the time, and the Maribor Regional Museum moved in in 1938.
ENTRANCE

LORETO CHAPEL

The chapel was built in 1655 and modelled after the Santa Casa Chapel in Loreto near Ancona. In the presbytery, a statue of the Black Virgin and Child is preserved in a niche.

THE CASTLE CELLAR

The castle cellar is part of the basement of the administrative court, which was built in 1478. It is decorated with frescoes painted in 1940 by Matej Sternen for the restaurant located there, at that time, called the Castle Cellar. Before that, the room was decorated with frescoes by Viktor Cotič. After the Second World War, this room was also used for museum purposes. Since 2006, it has been used for the exhibition Beginnings, and since 2010 for the exhibition First Touch.

CASTLE STAIRCASE

The castle staircase was built between 1747 and 1749 on the site of an earlier entrance with a stair tower. It is famous for its stone balustrade decorated with statues of 16 boys. The statues symbolize various sciences, arts, economic activities, and more. They are accompanied by metaphors of the seasons and the goddesses Ceres and Diana.

ARCHAEOLOGY


THE DEEP CELLAR

After 1620, the Counts of Khisli broke through the main building with a porch, which gave new access to the eastern courtyard. At the same time, the previously unified cellar was separated and its northern part, today called the deep cellar, was newly vaulted.

NORTH CELLAR

In 1591, the cellar was built, and two floors above it - the first containing a kitchen and a storeroom, the second two rooms. Since 2010, the basement has been used for the exhibition Ars Pharmaceutica - the Art of Pharmacy.

CASTLE BASTION

The castle bastion was built between 1555 and 1562 by the plans of Domenico dell'Alio. In 1750, it was bought by the Counts of Brandis, the first floor was added, and incorporated into the castle. In 2004, the embankment was removed from its northeastern corner. Since 2007, the ground floor has been used for the exhibition Between the Glamour and Misery of the Middle Ages. Since 2014, the first floor has been used as a viewing depot for the painting collection, and since 2015 as a viewing depot for the sculpture collection.

GET TO KNOW

MARIBOR CASTLE

Without the preserved stories and their storytellers, every building becomes a mere pile of bricks and stones. It is the stories of the people from the past who lived, loved, cried, were born, and died in the buildings, that breathe life into the spaces, and the storytellers will ensure that they are not forgotten.
Today's Maribor Castle is made up of two parts. The first is the administrative court of the sovereign Prince, built between 1478 and 1481, and the second is the northeastern part of the town fortification system (the castle bastion and the lodge). With the ownership of the Counts of Khisl, the final transformation of the court into a residential castle began in 1620, where, among other things, a Knights' Hall was erected and the Loreto chapel was built. After 1727, the castle passed into the ownership of the Counts of Brandis, who added a new staircase, built the upper part of the bastion, and completed the Knights' Hall. In 1871, the castle was cut in half with the layout of the present-day Castle Street. In 1933, the castle was bought by the municipality of the time, and the Maribor Regional Museum moved in in 1938.

1478

In 1478, on the order of Emperor Frederick III, an administrative court was built at the north-eastern corner of the city walls. It was intended to provide the city with a stronger fortification and better services during the turbulent times of the Hungarian and Ottoman threats. The basement and ground floor of the manor were vaulted, while the top floor had a flat ceiling. The original height of the building is indicated by a painted wreath of intersecting arches, still visible in the attic.

1555

1562

The bastion, one of four defensive buildings in Maribor designed by Domenico dell'Allia, was built at the north-east corner of the walls. The defensive strength of the bastion was increased by the embankment in its north-eastern part, which was removed in 2007. Five of the six former firing lines are preserved on the ground floor, with iron rings underneath for lashing the cannons. Judging by the depictions, the upper platform was also used to mount cannons. In 1750, the bastion was bought by Count Brandis and converted into a residential storey.

1620

1640

The Khisli Barons (Counts from 1623 onwards, owners of the castle until 1686) began to convert the castle into a residence when they became hereditary owners in 1620. They broke through the main building with a levelled porch, added four corner towers, of which only the south-eastern one survives, and after 1640 added sloping arcaded corridors on the south and west sides. A tower with a stair turret was also added on the west side.

 

1655

Jurij Jernej Khisl built the Loreto Chapel, which was consecrated by Bishop Vaccano in 1661. A statue of the Black Virgin and Child is preserved in a niche in the wall, and on the walls are tall wooden candlesticks with the 17th-century coat of arms of the Counts of Khisl. The oratory, built after 1727, was intended for the castle family. The surviving votive images prove that the chapel could have been visited by the townspeople.

 

HISTORY OF THE CASTLE

1668

1682

A castle lodge was built on top of the city walls. Count Hans Jakob Khisl had a ceiling built over the eastern wing, which was supported by arcades. The eastern wing consisted of the stables in the south (before 1590), the milk store and warehouse in the north and the meat store above (1590-1591).

 

1680

1763

The ceiling of the Knights' Hall was decorated with plasterwork by Alessandro Sereni and his assistants around 1680, and the painter Laurenzo Lauriga painted allegories of the four seasons, the Roman gods Jupiter and Mars, scenes of Odysseus's return to Ithaca, and two war scenes of battles with the Turks. In 1763, the Graz painter Joseph Michael Gebler painted the central ceiling scene of the battle with the Turks. The hall has hosted famous personalities, among them Pope Pius VI (1781) and Franz Liszt (1846).

 

1747

1749

On the site of the old stair turret, the Counts Brandis (owners of the castle 1727-1876) built a new building as a ceremonial access to the Knights' Hall. The exterior is vibrantly varied and decorated with stuccoed Rococo ornamentation, and is also adorned with the alliance coats of arms of the Brandis and Trauttmannsdorf families. The interior has a stone balustrade decorated with stone statues (boys symbolising the various sciences, economic activities and the arts, the goddesses Ceres and Diana, niches with allegories of the ages) and iron lamps in the shape of a tulip and a sunflower have been preserved.

 

1933

1938

In 1933, the Municipality of Maribor bought the castle from Vilko and Berta Berdajs (the owners of the castle 1921-1933), and in 1938 the Maribor Regional Museum moved in. The castle was converted for museum use and a ground-floor corridor was added to the inner courtyard of the castle.

 

PICTURE GALLERY

PICTURE GALLERY