Sokoľ – castle

History

   The castle was built in the in second half of the 13th century, and its name, Falcon’s Castle, derives from the name of the village, in which the royal falconers lived, that is, a hunters raising and breeding birds for the rulers. Its location on the sidelines leads to the assumption that it served as a shelter for owners and local population, for example in the event of subsequent Mongol invasions. In 1387 it came into possession of the Bebek family, but as early as 1423 King Sigismund of Luxembourg changed Sokoľ into Hrušov. The castle disappeared in the first half of the 15th century, when the surrounding lands took over in 1429 the city of Košice, provided that the castle fortifications were demolished. The reason for these actions is unknown, but it is very likely that the plunderers settled in the castle at that time, which forced the need to destroy their nest.

Architecture

   The castle was surrounded by a 7-meter deep and 30-meter wide ditch and an earth rampart that surrounded a longitudinal hill 65 meters long and 25 meters wide. Only from the south side the castle was deprived of external fortifications, because there was sufficient defense provided by steep slopes. Two circuits of the defensive walls were built on the hill, separating two courtyards. The eastern part, which can be regarded as a outer baily, had an entrance gate, a quadrangular residential building and a quadrilateral tower measuring 6×8 meters, securing passage to the upper castle. The courtyard in the western part was guarded by a cylindrical tower, probably with the function of a bergfried. It also had two residential buildings located at the northern and southern curtains. The cylindrical tower had a diameter of 9-10.5 meters. In addition to being the final refuge, it also secured the greater part of the access road to the castle. About 10-12 meters below the castle there was a 27-meter-long cave, probably serving as a cellar.

Current state

   The castle has not survived to modern times. Its existence is mainly evidenced by earth ramparts and ditches. Admission to its area is free.

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