Biestrzyków – tower house

History

   The residential defensive tower in Biestrzyków was probably founded in the 14th century. In sources, it is mentioned for the first time in 1411, as the property of the Wrocław chapter. Bought it than, along with the grange, orchards, gardens and other economic buildings for 40 fines, the archdeacon and the canon of Wrocław, Mateusz. In the 17th century, the tower and its surroundings were rebuilt, among others indefinite economic buildings were erected next to it. During the Second World War it was burnt, however thanks to the efforts of a private investor, it was renovated in the 90’s.

Architecture

   The tower was built of brick on a rectangular plan with dimensions 8.85 x 9.7 meters. Initially, it had only two floors (ground floor and first floor). The lowest was a vaulted cellar, accessible by a northern passage with a brick ramp, which suggests it was the storage of barrels with beer or wine. The ground floor was also vaulted, without ribs. It was distinguished by the presence of three ogival windows in the south wall and is most often described as a chapel room. However, it is more probable that the chancellery was located in the ground floor, as indicated by the niche for the books and the corner fireplace, as well as the lack of a foundation for the altar. On the first floor there was a main living chamber, originally covered with a timber ceiling, illuminated by three large windows with seats in recesses, warmed by a fireplace and decorated with polychromes. A narrow passage in the western curtain led to the timber defensive porch, located above the first floor. The entrances to the ground and to the first floor were placed in the northern wall and sheltered by a narrow brick extension with stairs, added in the 16th century. In the seventeenth century, the top floor was added.
   The whole was originally surrounded by a earth rampart and irrigated moat (at the widest point reaching 13 meters) and tower was located on a small artificial hill (today, in the highest place, the mound is 3 meters high to the level of the water in the moat). In the Middle Ages, the mound had a four-sided plan and dimensions at the base of about 30 x 40 meters.

Current state

   Renovated and renewed tower is in private hands. It is possible to view it from the outside. The owner is positively oriented to the visitors, lets into his area and take pictures.

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bibliography:
Chorowska M., Rezydencje średniowieczne na Śląsku, Wrocław 2003.
Leksykon zamków w Polsce, L.Kajzer, S.Kołodziejski, J.Salm, Warszawa 2003.
Nowakowski D., Śląskie obiekty typu motte, Wrocław 2017.