Hajnacka – castle

History

   The beginnings of wooden and earth fortifications on the castle hill date back to the first half of the 13th century. It probably served as a place of refuge during the Mongol invasion in the years 1241 – 1242, because in a document from 1245 King Bela IV praised the merits of the local population during the battles with the invaders. The stone castle was probably built soon after by the župan Mikov, ancestor of the mighty Balass family. The first written record of it comes from 1320, when King Charles I of Hungary confiscated it from Aleksander, son of Velk from the Hunt-Poznanski family. Soon after, he handed it over to Thomas Szécsény, whose descendants held the castle until 1424, when it became a salary  of Queen Barbara, and since 1438 it became the property of the noble Palóci family. At the end of the Middle Ages, Hajnacka fell into the hands of Melchior Balassa, who led the robbery lifestyle, but soon due to the rapid progress of the Turks, it was included in the line of anti-Ottoman fortifications. Already in 1545, the castle was captured by Turkish troops, but they left it after a short time. In 1565 it was again conquered by the Turkish army, which this time was stationed there until 1593. At the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries, it was recaptured and conquered again in 1645 by the George Rákóczi insurgents. After this event, the new owner of Hajnacka, Ladislav Feket, carried out the reconstruction. In 1703, when at the beginning of the uprising of Francis II Rákóczi, the castle was garrisoned by the army of Ladislav Osckay, a fire broke out in it. After a dozen or so years, the destroyed castle was abandoned and fell into total ruin.

Architecture

   The castle was located at the culmination of a rocky hill with very steep slopes. In its central part there were residential buildings, after which an oval wall remained at the northern edge. Below the southern and eastern sides, an outer ward was erected, reinforced with two lines of defensive walls and a horseshoe tower protruding entirely in front of the face of the wall in the southwest corner. At the courtyard of the outer ward there are also visible stairs cut into the rock and a cellar room embedded in the area. The entrance to the castle was in a bent wall on the south – west side and was flanked by the aforementioned horseshoe tower. From the seventeenth-century inventory, it is known that the castle had a residential building with six chambers, a kitchen, cellars, a granary and an ammunition store.
 

Current state

   The castle has been preserved in a debris state. Its humble relics are hardly visible and hard to reach. One can admire only the rock formations on which the stronghold was erected.

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bibliography:
Bóna M., Plaček M., Encyklopedie slovenských hradů, Praha 2007.
Wasielewski A., Zamki i zamczyska Słowacji, Białystok 2008.