Opole – Upper Castle

History

The Upper Castle in Opole was probably built in the 14th century by the prince Władysław Opolczyk. It may have stood in the place of the earlier wooden prince’s court. The first message about the existence of the castle comes from 1387. In addition to supervising the city and strengthening it from the east, it also served as a princely residence. As the city was divided between the sprawling dynasty of the Silesian Piasts, when the prince Bolesław IV resided in the castle in Ostrówek, Władysław II lived in the Upper stronghold on Górka. After the death of Władysław Opolczyk the castle was inherited by the widow of him, the princess Ofka, and after her, the brothers of Władysław: bishop Jan I Kropidło and Bolko IV. After the fire in 1615, the building was no longer renovated, the main castle tower was used as a granary. From the end of the seventeenth century, the Jesuits were here. Due to the poor condition, monks destroyed the ruin, leaving only one tower. After the dissolution of the order, the building was designated as a school.

Architecture

The Upper Castle was an object integrated with the defense system of the city, but at the same time constituting an independent defensive foundation. It was built in close proximity to the Gosławice Gate. It was a bit ahead of the city walls line and flanked the gate from the south. Thanks to this location, it significantly strengthened the defense of the section, particularly at risk in the event of a siege. The castle was probably a four-sided construction with a distinctive four-sided, large tower.

Current state

To our times survived the four-sided castle tower, superstructured and crowned with pseudo-gothic battlement in the 19th century. The tower has a walled, pointed portal, probably a remnant of the entrance gate. On the side of the tower there is a short section of the gothic defensive wall.

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bibliography:
Leksykon zamków w Polsce, L.Kajzer, S.Kołodziejski, J.Salm, Warszawa 2003.