Rodenstein Castle - parts of the curtain wall with the so-called mill tower
|Alternative name (s):||Rodinstein (around 1400)|
|Creation time :||around 1240|
|Castle type :||Höhenburg, hillside location|
|Standing position :||Free nobles|
The castle Rodensteinstraße is the ruin of a hillside castle in the Odenwald . It belongs to the municipality of Fränkisch-Crumbach in the Odenwaldkreis (South Hesse ) and can be reached from there and from the neighboring municipality of Reichelsheim .
The ruin is Gersprenz valley away from larger settlements about 3.5 km west-south-west of Fränkisch-Crumbach and 2.7 km north-west of Reichelsheim. The location as a hillside castle is more of an unfavorable terrain. In addition to the name, the location also indicates a castle that was pushed into the cleared forest. Typical of such clearing castles is the courtyard below the castle, where the few fields and meadows in the valley were available as usable space.in a side valley of the
The castle is a fortification of the Lords of Crumbach and Rodenstein , whose headquarters were in Franconian Crumbach. It was built around 1240 as a stronghold against Reichenberg Castle, with the Lords of Crumbach and Rodenstein enjoying the full support of the Counts of Katzenelnbogen . In 1346 Erkenger, Herr von Rodenstein, sold half of his share in the Rodenstein house to Count Wilhelm II von Katzenelnbogen . In 1433 Philipp I von Katzenelnbogen acquired further shares from Hermann and Konrad von Rodenstein. In 1436 Count Johann IV von Katzenelnbogen enfeoffed the noble Hans, Lord of Rodenstein and Lißberg , with half of the Rodenstein Castle.
In 1479, when the Katzenelnbogen family died out, their possessions fell under Heinrich III. to the Landgraviate of Hesse . The castle was not ruined by war . A sketch by Valentin Wagner shows it in 1634 as a castle-like complex with intact buildings. After Adam von Rodenstein died of the plague with his whole family in 1635, the castle was no longer inhabited. Since then, parts of the castle have started to be demolished and the building material reused. In 1640 and 1646, when the last Georg Friedrich from Rodenstein set out on a trip to France, it was still intact. A legal dispute developed between Georg Friedrich and his guardian, in the course of which the Rodensteiner even turned to Emperor Leopold . Attempts to restore it thereafter were unsuccessful. After the death of Georg Friedrich in 1671 and the extinction of the male line of Rodenstein, the castle was used as a quarry until the middle of the 19th century. In Fränkisch-Crumbach, the Adelshof of the Barons of Pretlack ( today's town hall ) was built from the stones .
Today the Rodenstein has belonged to the barons of Gemmingen-Hornberg (Rohrbach & Höhr-Grenzhausen) for several generations .
Condition and description 1634
Wagner's drawing from 1634 gives a good impression of a densely built-up late medieval Ganerbeburg . The draftsman's location is likely to have been on today's route to Laudenau . There is a display board with Wagner's view of the castle at what is now wooded. On the right in the picture you can see the well-preserved mill tower. It carries an upper floor made of half-timbered houses with a steeply hipped roof. The chimney on it indicates that the upper room could have served as the tower watcher's apartment.
The newer gate in the northwest of the castle, which replaced the mill tower as a gate system, can be seen to the left of the mill tower. The access ran over a covered wooden bridge in front of it. Behind the gate rises a massive residential building compared to the entire complex. It is the younger Palas from the 14th century ( The stone floor ), in the upstairs apartment of the lords was located. At the level of this floor there is a half-timbered bay on two struts. Numerous dormers , a chimney and a weather vane can be seen on the roof . A weakly indicated wavy line below the windows on the upper floor could indicate a round arch frieze . The eaves side of the building adjoining the residential building on the left can be identified as a kitchen building, which in turn is adjacent to the older hall on the left. Two bay windows protruding far into the kennel area could have been used as a toilet bay.
A smaller building, which can be seen in front of the large residential complex of the core castle and protrudes into the Zwinger, can not be identified . Part of the Zwingermauer can be seen on the left in the picture, on the far left the northeastern flanking tower of the Zwinger Fortifications. The castle is also surrounded by a palisade fence, possibly an indication of agriculture being practiced here. A certificate of division from 1624 also mentions vineyards at the castle. In front of the castle, a large roof of a farm building is still visible, possibly a barn.
Today's castle ruins
The castle is a typical hillside castle . The core facility was a rectangular building with rounded corners, with the south-west side facing the mountain slope being reinforced like a shield wall . The main building material was granite , and stone was made from Odenwald sandstone . In the northern corner of the main castle is the former first Palas . A second was added in the 14th century, so that a dense development of the inner castle was created. The complex did not have a keep .
The inner castle complex was surrounded by a curtain wall with several towers. A walled-up gate can be seen on the outside of the mill tower. Obviously, the entrance was later moved from the mountain side to the valley side, where today's gate with the access is located. In the 16th century, further parts of the curtain wall and a kennel in the south of the complex were added.
The function of the mill tower in the west of the castle is not entirely clear. Previously it was assumed that after the entrance was walled up, it housed a water mill . However, this is associated with considerable technical difficulties and was also expensive to maintain. It is more likely that a hand mill is in operation in the tower, as was also the case in other castles.
In the 20th century, the ruins were restored and restored to their present condition.
Below the castle is the Rodenstein estate , an older half-timbered building that was rebuilt after a fire in 1910. The stone with the year 1593 above the portal originally comes from the castle. There is a restaurant in the Hofgut.
Look into the neck ditch
The legend of the Rodensteiner , also known as the Schnellertsgeist, is associated with Rodenstein Castle and the noble family as well as the neighboring Schnellerts Castle . He was cursed to get out of his grave and warn people when war was about to break out. The poets Joseph Victor von Scheffel and Werner Bergengruen immortalized the ruin in literary works.
About 750 m southwest of Rodenstein Castle is the Wildweibchenstein , a rock formation that is also linked to several legends.
Eagle owls at the ruin
Eagle owls appeared on the ruins in the 17th century . Further details are not documented.
- Thomas Biller: Castles and palaces in the Odenwald. A guide to history and architecture. Schnell and Steiner, Regensburg 2005, p. 199.
- Thomas Steinmetz: Castles in the Odenwald. Verlag Ellen Schmid, Brensbach 1998, p. 70.
- Karl Ernst Demandt : Regesten der Grafen von Katzenelnbogen 1060 - 1486; 1. 1060 - 1418. Historical Commission for Nassau, Wiesbaden 1953 ( publications of the Historical Commission for Nassau 11.1 ), p. 307, no. 991.
- Karl E. Demandt: Regest of the Counts of Katzenelnbogen 1060 - 1486; 2. 1418 - 1482. Historical Commission for Nassau, Wiesbaden 1954 ( publications of the Historical Commission for Nassau 11.2 ), p. 1017, no. 3617.
- Karl E. Demandt: Regest of the Counts of Katzenelnbogen 1060 - 1486; 2. 1418 - 1482. Historical Commission for Nassau, Wiesbaden 1954 ( publications of the Historical Commission for Nassau 11.2 ), p. 1052, no. 3743.
- Winfried Wackerfuß: Valentin Wagner's views of Rodenstein Castle and Lichtenberg Castle in the Odenwald as sources of architectural history. In: Holger Th. Gräf and Helga Meise (eds.): Valentin Wagner. A draftsman in the Thirty Years War. Darmstadt 2003, pp. 84f.
- The description largely follows the information provided by Winfried Wackerfuß: Valentin Wagner's views of Rodenstein Castle and Lichtenberg Castle in the Odenwald as sources of architectural history. In: Holger Th. Gräf and Helga Meise (eds.): Valentin Wagner. A draftsman in the Thirty Years War. Darmstadt 2003, p. 86f.
- Axel W. Gleue: The mill tower of Rodenstein Castle and the legend of the water wheel. In: The Odenwald. Journal of the Breuberg-Bundes 61/4, 2014, pp. 136–143.
- For the Hofgut see State Office for the Preservation of Monuments Hesse (ed.): Former Hofgut Rodenstein In: DenkXweb, online edition of cultural monuments in Hessen .
- Moritz Balthasar Borkhausen; Johann Conrad Susemihl; Johann Theodor Susemihl; Eduard Susemihl: German ornithology or natural history of all birds in Germany. Volume VII, Darmstadt 1803.
- W. Schuster: Bird fauna of Greater Hesse and Nassau . Ornithological Research Center Mainz Basin, Mainz 1941.
- Thomas Biller: Castles and palaces in the Odenwald. A guide to history and architecture. Schnell and Steiner, Regensburg 2005, ISBN 3-7954-1711-2 , pp. 199-201.
- Peter Schneider: Cavities under the Rodenstein castle ruins. In: The Odenwald. Journal of the Breuberg Association . 52nd year (2005), No. 1, , pp. 17-33.
- Rudolf Knappe : Medieval castles in Hessen. 800 castles, castle ruins and fortifications. 3. Edition. Wartberg publishing house. Gudensberg-Gleichen 2000, ISBN 3-86134-228-6 , pp. 542f.
- Thomas Steinmetz: Castles in the Odenwald . Verlag Ellen Schmid, Brensbach 1998. ISBN 3-931529-02-9 , pp. 69-71.
- Hans Teubner and Sonja Bonin: Cultural monuments in Hesse. Odenwaldkreis. Published by the State Office for Monument Preservation Hessen , Vieweg, Braunschweig / Wiesbaden 1998 ( Monument Topography Federal Republic of Germany ), ISBN 3-528-06242-8 , pp. 341–343.
- Winfried Wackerfuß : Valentin Wagner's views of Rodenstein Castle and Lichtenberg Castle in the Odenwald as sources of architectural history. In: Holger Th. Gräf and Helga Meise (eds.): Valentin Wagner. A draftsman in the Thirty Years War. Exhibition catalog Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt 2003, ISBN 3-921254-92-2 , pp. 83–94.
- Winfried Wackerfuß: The drawings of the Dresden painter Valentin Wagner at the Rodenstein Castle in 1634. In: The Odenwald . Journal of the Breuberg-Bundes 63/3, 2016, pp. 110–121.
- Rolf Müller (Ed.): Palaces, castles, old walls. Published by the Hessendienst der Staatskanzlei, Wiesbaden 1990, ISBN 3-89214-017-0 , p. 117f.
- State Office for Monument Preservation Hesse (ed.): Ruine Rodenstein In: DenkXweb, online edition of cultural monuments in Hesse
- Rodenstein, municipality of Fränkisch-Crumbach. Historical local dictionary for Hessen. In: Landesgeschichtliches Informationssystem Hessen (LAGIS).
- Information on the Rodenstein ruins in the Odenwald Private website
- Entry to Rodenstein i. Odenwald in the scientific database " EBIDAT " of the European Castle Institute
- Reconstruction drawing by Wolfgang Braun