Trikāta – Order Castle Trikaten


   The exact date of the creation of the castle is unknown, later sources only give a not very sure year 1284. In historical documents the castle appeared only in 1429, although its architectural form allows us to assume that the stone fortifications in place of earlier wood and earth ramparts could have been created in the mid-fourteenth century, and even at the end of the thirteenth century. The castle was one of several strongholds constituting the economic base of the commandry of Wenden. Due to not too much importance, it did not appear too often in the sources. Like most of the Livonian castles, Trikaten was destroyed by the army of Ivan the Terrible in the second half of the 16th century. After a short reign of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, it was occupied by the Swedes and finally destroyed during the war with Russia at the beginning of the 18th century.


   The layout of the castle was determined by the shape of the hill, the high and steep slopes of which provided excellent protection. Only from the north, the area of the castle was connected with the adjacent higher point and had to be cut off by a ditch, in front of which a vast outer bailey was located. Additional external protection was provided by the nearby river from the east, west and south.
   The defense of the upper castle was initially based only on stone defensive walls, led on three sides along the edge of the slopes, and in the north, right in front of the ditch. Inside the perimeter, buildings were placed at the curtains of the walls, especially on the north-west and south-east sides. Some of the buildings could have been wooden or half-timbered on a stone foundation. At the end of the Middle Ages, the main element of the castle’s defense was a tower located in the north-eastern corner of the upper ward, right next to the gate leading to the outer bailey.

Current state

   Only a few and a dozen meters long fragments of defensive walls and a part of the base of the tower have survived to the present. Currently, the castle area has a park and a small stage where cultural events are organized.

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Borowski T., Miasta, zamki i klasztory. Inflanty, Warszawa 2010.
Tuulse A., Die Burgen in Estland und Lettland, Dorpat 1942.