Świny – castle

History

   Originally at the top of the hill was a castellan hillfort, which lost in the 13th century importance, at the moment of construction of Bolków town and castle. It was one of the strongholds protecting Silesia from the Bohemia side. Probably in the years 1245-1272 in the former castellany, settled a mighty Świnki family. At their initiative, around the middle of the fourteenth century, a great keep was built. In the following centuries other representatives of the family were extended it. In the fifteenth century Gunczel, and in the sixteenth century Burgmann and Jan. The last major reconstruction took place in the twenties of the 17th century on the initiative of Jan Zygmunt. The castle became a strong, late renaissance residence. As one of the few in Silesia was never captured by the Hussites or by the Swedes. Shortly afterwards, however, its importance declined, it passed into the side line of the family and completely fell into disrepair. In 1769 the buildings were abandoned, and the hurricane of 1868 and the fire of 1876 completed the ruin. The first security work was carried out in the 1930s.

Architecture

   The stronghold consisted of the upper and lower castle. In the upper castle there was a stone, residential and defense tower surrounded by an oval-shaped wall. It had a basement and four floors, built on a rectangular plan with dimensions of 12×18 meters. The thickness of the walls reached 2.5 meters. The original entrance led to it through a portal located on the second floor and equipped with a portcullis. The original windows were ogival in stone bindings and semicircular, embrasured. Their diversity indicates the residential and representative function of the building and its partition into rooms by timber screens. In addition, on the north wall there were latrines, hung on the level of the second and third floors.
  
In the fifteenth century, a residential house was added to the tower and a gate with a portcullis of which the stone guides have been preserved. A box machicolation was built above it. Later, a staircase was added between the residential tower and the gate. In the lower castle from the 16th century there was a large, two-range house, flanked in the corners with two cylindrical low towers.

Current state

   The castle has survived in a fairly well preserved ruin. In the upper part of the castle there is a keep and a roofless western house. At the lower castle stands a ruined palace. Also survived fragments of the peripheral walls with low towers in the southern part of the castle. The castle is in private hands, but it is possible to explore it.

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bibliography:
Boguszewicz A., Corona Silesiae. Zamki Piastów fürstenberskich na południowym pograniczu księstwa jaworskiego, świdnickiego i ziębickiego do połowy XIV wieku, Wrocław 2010.

Chorowska M., Rezydencje średniowieczne na Śląsku, Wrocław 2003.
Leksykon zamków w Polsce, L.Kajzer, S.Kołodziejski, J.Salm, Warszawa 2003.