Topic: Horst Castle NE of Leuven Belgium
posted 06-01-2000 02:34 PM
I am interested in the history of this Castle. It is suppose to be part of my lineage. VAN ERMEN. When there were no more son's the castle changed hands. Anyone having any information can contact me at email@example.com
posted 06-07-2000 04:31 AM
I got the following info from a belgian walking excursion book but couldn't find any images.
"The origin and earliest history of Horst Castle isn't known. We only know that there was a 'castellum Rode' in 1100 AD. The name Horst appears in 1268. when Jan van Horst owned the castle. The layout suggests a medieval origin: just as other rural castles from the 13th/14th century, Castle Horst has an irregular polygon shape and was surrounded by a moat. The buildings are centered around a courtyard, which nowadays is open at the southside but used to be closed by a residential wing which was torn down in the 18th or beginning of the 19th century. From the medieval castle only the keep and the gate remained. Everything else was burned to the ground during a battle between Maximillian of Austria and the people of Leuven.
The layout of Castle Horst remains medieval but the buildings that can been admired today are build or rebuild in later times. The renovations, which started in the 16th century and were completed in the 17th century, gave the castle its final appearance.
Although Castle Horst was only inhabited until the 2nd half of the 17th century, the succesive owners maintained the domain, and certainly the walls and roofs, with great care which is remarkable.
After the fire of 1489 Castle Horst was rebuild in early-renaissance style and is thus one of the earliest examples of this architectural style in Flanders. Eye-catcher is the keep; heavy, square, 4 stories high and with a little lookout tower. The round tower which is incorporated halfway into the wall at the northwestern side of the complex, dates from the same period around 1500.
The 16th and 17th century renovations took away the military appearance of Castle Horst; it became a attractive manor with large windows that looked out over the ponds, the moat and the courtyard.
The chapel and its outbuildings are from the 17th century. The castlepond has a surface area of 5 ha.
The uninhabited castle has no furniture but contains spacy interiors and old chimneys and 3 beautifull 17th century plastered ceilings.
The coach house, a long building outside the old moat, is also worth visiting. It was build in 1675 and is now used as a guesthouse. Right next to it are a visitorcentre and a heritageshop.
The castle can be visited from april till october."
"A man's house is his castle"
Visit my website at http://www.castles.nl/
[This message has been edited by Marko (edited 10-30-2001).]
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