Castle WindauThe castle is considered the oldest in Ventspils Vindau fortress from the late Middle Ages in Latvia (the year 1290), preserved in a full volume. The mouth of the river Venta was first mentioned in historical sources in 1263, in connection with the conclusion of the agreement on the Division of the port of Courland and the Curonian lands among the master of the Livonian order and the Bishop of Kurzeme. This area became the property of the Livonian order. The Crusaders at the end of the 13th century (the period 1263 to 1290 BC) erected here in 1 km from the mouth of the Venta River, the stone castle Vindau (Windau). There are suggestions that this could happen in the middle of the century. The oldest part of the Livonian Order’s Castle, built on the site of the former settlement of Curonians, a donjon Tower, standing for the protection of fine seafood Harbour and navigation on the river Venta in the 13th century, the castle was originally surrounded by a moat, but its traces not survived to the present day.

In 1290, the master of the Hal′t approved the border of Kuldiga city and Ventspils komturij and then Castle Vindau was first mentioned in historical sources as a ready-made structure, in which lived in Ryn Livonian order. According to historians, the castle was built in three phases Vindau called three construction period. Initially up to 1290 g. 10h16h30 Square Tower were built, with a total area of approximately 1133 square metres and surrounding the fortress wall with a length of 32.5 x 33.5 m around the courtyard of about 160 m². m. the thickness of the walls was about two meters. For the inhabitants of the Castle Tower served as a last refuge in time of danger, so the entrance to the tower was at a safe height from the ground, where access was quickly dilemma referred to wooden stairs. On the second floor was a room where you can sit out in the event of a siege. To keep warm, the Knights stoked fire.

Over time, the Castle was the Centre of a Vindau Trestles. It is known about the komtur of 1291 21 or 1309 on 1560 ‘s, lived in the Ventspils Castle throughout the existence of the State of the Livonian order. The first komtur was brother Detlev or Detfler, mentioned in 1291, the audit Protocol, dated 1442 year, mentions that in the Castle lived five Knights, two priests, and they had weapons for 32 and 34 horses; the Castle also had 6 cannons and 20 samostrelov with 30 cops shoot (30 x 60 PCs.) and polubočka powder. In 1451, the castle had seven brothers Knight award certificates and operating staff.

In the 14th century were constructed all buildings of the Castle, forming a complex of buildings with a courtyard of the convent type. During the Polish-Swedish war (1655-1660), the castle was destroyed, and in the second half of the 17 century newly restored.

In 1832, the completed reconstruction of the Castle, and began a period of its use as the county jail, which lasted until 1959 year. After that, the castle was used as a military base of the border forces of the USSR. In 1997 year was updated facade of the Castle and its territory is arranged well. Externally, the castle was returned to its historic appearance-now it looks like in the 19 century.

Now the castle is the Museum of Ventspils, exposition of which the history of the Castle, town and port, developed with the use of computer technology, is considered the most modern in the Baltics. For example, in the cellar of ghosts of the castle can be seen as the past runs through the Black piglet Castle and “held in a prison, you can hear the voices of prisoners. In the courtyard, where various events are held frequently, you can shoot this bow.

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