Siersberg Castle

Siersburg Castle

Siersberg Castle, locally known as Burg Siersberg or Siersburg, lies on a hill above the town of Siersburg, in the Saarland region in Germany.

Although Siersberg Castle was first mentioned in 1178, it was probably already built in the 11th century. It was built atop an almost 300 meter high mountain overlooking the valleys of the rivers Saar and Nied. It was meant to control traffic on those rivers, as well as on the trade routes that ran beside or crossed them.

Before 1150 it was property of the Counts of Saarbrücken, then it came into the possession of the Duke of Lorraine. In 1175 it was conquered by the Archbishop of Trier; Arnold I of Vaucourt. The archbishop then forced the duke to take it from him as a fief. Following dukes tried to get rid of the feudal sovereignty of the archbishop but only succeeded in doing so after 1354.

The Dukes of Lorraine in their turn had been giving Siersberg Castle as a fief to a noble family who started to call themselves Lords of Siersberg. During the 16th century the castle area was increasingly parcelled out and each new part was given as a fief to other noble families. They all started living on their part in separate houses and acted as castellans for their parts.

During the Thirty Years' War, in 1634, the castle was taken by French troops because the Duke of Lorraine had sided with the German Emperor. In the next decades it was taken and retaken several times by both parties which of course caused damage to the castle. In 1670 the French again occupied Lorraine. When they retreated again in 1677 they partly blew up the, by then already dilapidated, castle. After that Sierberg increasingly lost its military importance and its decay progressed.

In the first part of the 18th century some repairs were apparently carried out, as the castle garrison managed to repel an attack from imperial troops during the War of the Austrian Succession in the 1740's. A lightning strike in the keep caused the castle to fall into disrepair again later that century. In 1793 most of Siersberg Castle was destroyed in the course of the French Revolution.

A signal station for an optical telegraph line was built on the ruined castle in 1813 on the orders of Napoleon Bonaparte. As a result of the Congress of Vienna the area and castle were assigned to the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815 after which the telegraph line ceased to operate. After that the castle ruins were used as a quarry by the locals.

During the 20th century the castle ruins were consolidated several times.

Siersberg Castle can freely be visited. Visits of the interior of the keep are only possible by appointment. A nice castle ruin.


Gallery

Siersberg Castle

Siersburg Castle

Siersberg Castle, locally known as Burg Siersberg or Siersburg, lies on a hill above the town of Siersburg, in the Saarland region in Germany.

Although Siersberg Castle was first mentioned in 1178, it was probably already built in the 11th century. It was built atop an almost 300 meter high mountain overlooking the valleys of the rivers Saar and Nied. It was meant to control traffic on those rivers, as well as on the trade routes that ran beside or crossed them.

Before 1150 it was property of the Counts of Saarbrücken, then it came into the possession of the Duke of Lorraine. In 1175 it was conquered by the Archbishop of Trier; Arnold I of Vaucourt. The archbishop then forced the duke to take it from him as a fief. Following dukes tried to get rid of the feudal sovereignty of the archbishop but only succeeded in doing so after 1354.

The Dukes of Lorraine in their turn had been giving Siersberg Castle as a fief to a noble family who started to call themselves Lords of Siersberg. During the 16th century the castle area was increasingly parcelled out and each new part was given as a fief to other noble families. They all started living on their part in separate houses and acted as castellans for their parts.

During the Thirty Years' War, in 1634, the castle was taken by French troops because the Duke of Lorraine had sided with the German Emperor. In the next decades it was taken and retaken several times by both parties which of course caused damage to the castle. In 1670 the French again occupied Lorraine. When they retreated again in 1677 they partly blew up the, by then already dilapidated, castle. After that Sierberg increasingly lost its military importance and its decay progressed.

In the first part of the 18th century some repairs were apparently carried out, as the castle garrison managed to repel an attack from imperial troops during the War of the Austrian Succession in the 1740's. A lightning strike in the keep caused the castle to fall into disrepair again later that century. In 1793 most of Siersberg Castle was destroyed in the course of the French Revolution.

A signal station for an optical telegraph line was built on the ruined castle in 1813 on the orders of Napoleon Bonaparte. As a result of the Congress of Vienna the area and castle were assigned to the Kingdom of Prussia in 1815 after which the telegraph line ceased to operate. After that the castle ruins were used as a quarry by the locals.

During the 20th century the castle ruins were consolidated several times.

Siersberg Castle can freely be visited. Visits of the interior of the keep are only possible by appointment. A nice castle ruin.


Gallery