Buchlovice Castle - Czech republic
Buchlovice Castle and Park is situated at south-east border of beautiful countryside of Chřiby Hills, not far from majestic Buchlov Castle. The building belongs to most important noble seats of Baroque style in the territory of the Czech Republic.
We can fully recommend you to visit this complex, thanks to quality-level of the architecture, rich collections, famous owners as well as an important place in the history of past years of Habsburg Monarchy, all these factors form a place, exceeding with its importance the region.
Buchlovice Castle is consisted of two independent buildings, with semicircle ground-plan, turned to each other with its courtyard facades. As these buildings are situated along gradual terrain, they got a name Upper and Lower Castle, whereas a main building is the lower situated one. Upper Castle is a farmer estate known as Flora. The lower building is equipped with representative two-storey hall with paintings and frescos, presenting nature elements, year seasons and mythology. In the Castle, you can find furniture of Baroque, Rococco and Neo-Classic style.
At the breake of 17th and 18th centuries, Buchlov Castle stopped to meet the requirements for comfortable lodging. From this reason, Jan Detřich of Petřvald decided to build for his wife Eleonora, coming from Italian Collona Parentage, in Buchlovice a new castle. This lady was accustomed for hot south weather and she did not wished to be in cold rooms of Buchlov Castle. Petřvald Parentage had the peacocks in their escutcheon. So, now, you can meet such proud and many-coloured birds in the park and castle surroundings. Buchlovice Castle is similar, with its architecture, to Italian villas of Baroque style.
At first, it was built so called Lower Castle. The whole complex was finished in 1738. Domenico Martinelli and Balthasar Fontana were main architects of this object. B. Fontana is also an author of stucco decoration of the castle. The members of Petřvald Family used the castle as their summer seat. After 1800, when the Parentage died out, Buchlovice were handed over to Berchtold Family, concretely to Leopold I. This man was known as enlightener, he introduced there military hospital. He lived in Buchlov Castle, and was expressively engaged in actions specialized to health protection of local inhabitants.
He became a propagator of a method - breathing from mouth to mouth. However, this activity was fatal for him later, as during 1809, when he did a function of military hospitals´ inspector of Hradiště Region, he caught a typhoid during one visit and died later, as a consequence of such disease. Frederick Vsemir, a naturalist, Leopold´s step-brother, was also an important personality. In 1820, published, together with Jan Svatopluk Presl, a book, known as „Botany“ – very important work of Bohemian literature. On break of 19th and 20th centuries, originally economical use of Upper Castle was completely changed.
Its reconstruction was effected by architect D. Fey He let to built new stables, and from these old ones, he created comfortable flats. In Lower Castle, the bedrooms were enlarged in bathrooms, and even library and dining rooms undergone reconstruction works. In a niche, a chapel with rare late Gothic paintings of Saints is to be found. The importance of the castle was increased in 1900, withing stay of Leopold Berchtold. This elegant and charmant proprietor was active in diplomatic services of Austro-Hungarian Empire. He stayed at Embassies in London, Paris and St. Petersbourg. Thanks to his ability, Berchtold was, since 1912, nominated as last but one Minister of Foreign Affairs of Austria. The year 1908 became important for Buchlovice Castle. Here, a meeting of Russian and Austro-Hungarian Ministers of Foreign Affairs was effected. As a result, influence spheres of Balcan countries, followed by annexation of Bosnia-Herzegowina territory by Austrian army, was made. As generally known, these events brought later to the 1st World War. Berchtold Parentage was as the owner of Buchlovice Castle till 1945, when a state handed over their possession.
A garden and a park are situated around the castle. These environs were created paralelly since the beginning of 18th century, Castle garden and a park belong to one of most important monuments of so called „historical green“, which forms indivisible part of representative architecture of aristocracy seat. The entry to the garden is possible along powerful stone staircase and well arranged paths, passing fountains with statues. French garden is regularly changing into English park, full of scarse coniferies and leafy woods, surrounded with numerous statues. Except castle and park, the visitors can admire unique collection of fuchsia plants, gravestones of Zástřizly Family of 16th and 17th centuries. They can also follow various exhibitions, wine gallery as well as different cultural events. Small visitors appreciate, for sure, rescue station and small ZOO-garden, with many home and exotic animals. Buchlovice offer also interesting sightseeings in the environs, such as, for instance: Buchlov Castle, unique Baroque cemetery in the community of Střílky, famous shrine Velehrad or many monuments of Great Moravia in Staré Město, not far from Uherské Hradiště.
Text: Denisa Arvajová
Translation: ing. Jan Jonáš
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