© Philipp Zieger

Stolpen Castle

Short facts

Castle complex with museum rooms and event venue

Stolpen Castle is a medieval castle complex built on basalt. It is home to the deepest natural basalt well in the world. In the past, the castle served as a prison for Countess Cosel, the most famous mistress of Augustus the Strong. An extensive tour of the castle grounds offers visitors an insight into the past. This includes gloomy dungeons, winding cellar corridors, a torture chamber, a hunger hole and striking towers. Visitors can also view castle-specific exhibitions in the museum rooms.

The old Veste Stolpen, with its silhouette visible from afar, also aroused the interest of the Romantics. While only a few aristocratic travellers visited Stolpen in the 18th century, many travel guides describing the romantic landscape around Dresden and Saxon Switzerland now recommended a detour to Stolpen.
One of the pioneers of Saxon Switzerland in terms of visual art was Adrian Zingg (1734-1816), a Swiss artist based in Dresden, who drew in Stolpen around 1785 and published prints with the most important view of the fortress. Caspar David Friedrich must have been familiar with these works. On 27 August 1820, Friedrich was in Stolpen and drew the freestanding, towering Coselturm in portrait format.
"The towers too long." Friedrich noted on his sketch of the Coselturm that day. A gaping wound next to the tower. Here he drew the part of the complex that had been destroyed by Napoleon and his troops just a few years earlier. You can clearly see the gap in the wall and the rubble that was blown out of it.
Friedrich made it his task at the time to document the traces of Napoleon's destruction and drew them wherever he could.
He probably showed the sketch he made in Stolpen to his friend Carl Gustav Carus (1789-1869). Because just eight days later, Carus was also in Stolpen. He drew the same motif from an identical angle at an only slightly closer location. His drawing, which is more of a landscape format and opens up the view slightly into the surrounding landscape, gives an idea of the Veste Stolpen, a free-standing landmark that dominated the neighbourhood at the time. However, the sketches by the two Romantics did not result in any major works of art.

Hiking suggestion in the footsteps of Caspar David Friedrich:Walk through Stolpen

More information:
  • Specially for children (visit to the castle ghost "Basaltus")
  • Tour lasts approx. 2 hours
  • Souvenir sales

Gästekarte Sächsische Schweiz
At Stolpen Castle, you will receive a discount of €1 on your admission price

on presentation of your guest card.

On the map

Stolpen Castle
Schloßstraße 10
01833 Stolpen

On the map:
Phone: +49 35973 23410
Fax: +49 35973 23419

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