Arolsen residential palace

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Arolsen residential palace
Arolsen residential palace

Arolsen residential palace

Creation time : 1710-1728
Conservation status: Completely
Standing position : Princes
Place: Bad Arolsen
Geographical location 51 ° 22 ′ 51 ″  N , 9 ° 1 ′ 19 ″  E Coordinates: 51 ° 22 ′ 51 ″  N , 9 ° 1 ′ 19 ″  E
Height: 293  m above sea level NHN
Arolsen residential palace (Hesse)
Arolsen residential palace

The Residenzschloss Arolsen is a baroque castle in Bad Arolsen in the Waldeck-Frankenberg district in northern Hesse ( Germany ). The castle was built as a three-wing complex, which is followed by an English garden . The central landscape architectural design element is an extensive roundel . The castle was the residence of the Princes of Waldeck from the house Waldeck , of their descendants will still inhabited.


Previous construction

In 1131 the parish village of Arolsen (or at that time still "Aroldessen") is mentioned for the first time on the occasion of the foundation of the Augustinian convent Aroldessen . As with many castles, the previous building of today's residential palace was a monastery . From 1526 to 1530 it was owned by Count Philip III. von Waldeck- Eisenberg repealed and secularized and then converted into a castle by him. This castle and the remains of the monastery were finally demolished in 1710.

Construction and history of the new castle

Guard houses of the yard
Eastern side wing

Built on the same site architect Julius Ludwig Rothweil d. Ä. The new palace based on the Versailles model from 1710 to 1728 for Count Friedrich Anton Ulrich von Waldeck and Pyrmont . In 1711 the count was raised to the hereditary prince status. Inspired by this elevation, the main work on the building complex in Arolsen was carried out in the years 1713 to 1722. In 1719 the exterior construction with the two gables on the courtyard side and then in 1720 that of the garden side was completed. On September 13, 1720, Friedrich Anton Ulrich and his wife, Louise von Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld, moved into the castle. It was not until 1725 that the inner and outer courtyard wings with enclosures and guard houses were built.

After the completion of the main building in 1728, the establishment, equipment and furnishing took several decades until the castle was finally handed over to its use. In 1728, Karl of Waldeck and Pyrmont became the ruling prince; he had the two apartments redesigned by the prince and princess. Since then, the Arolsen Mint has been housed in the west wing . In 1740 the rooms in the inner west wing were furnished in baroque style, but after 1746 the princess's audience room was furnished in a more contemporary rococo style . In 1751 the music room was redesigned and finally the two wings in the attic were expanded in 1745 (??). From 1749 to 1758 the royal stables and 1755 to 1761 the government house of Friedrich Franz Rothweil the Elder. J. built. From 1763 to 1778 the nearby " New Castle " was completed as a widow's seat (Wittumspalais). From 1809 to 1811, the state master builder Theodor Escher set up the “Great Hall”.

Emma von Waldeck and Pyrmont , who later became Queen of the Netherlands, was born on August 2, 1858 in Arolsen Castle and married King Wilhelm III on January 7, 1879 in the castle chapel . the Netherlands.


The “Fürstlich Waldecksche Hofbibliothek”, established in 1840, now contains literature on almost all fields of knowledge relevant in the 18th century. The focus of the collection is on general, geography , history , literature and militaria . The basis of the library were the 400 works, manuscripts and prints that were transferred to the Waldeck House in 1576 when the Augustinian canons of Volkhardinghausen near Arolsen were abolished. The library currently has 35,000 volumes spread across five rooms. In addition, there are 300 maps , 500 engravings and several thousand individual engravings in the library.

Financial and constitutional consequences

The construction of the palace made excessive demands on the state finances of the small principality. After the founding of the German Confederation , Waldeck was so indebted that it could not raise the contribution payments to the federal government. The state parliament therefore forced the accession agreement with Prussia in 1867 , with which Waldeck lost a considerable part of its independence.

The last ruling prince, Friedrich zu Waldeck and Pyrmont , was deposed on November 13, 1918 by an ultimatum from the workers 'and soldiers' council who had traveled from Kassel. Negotiations about the division of property and the whereabouts of the princely family lasted until 1929. They ended with the establishment of the "Waldeckische Domanialverwaltung", a company owned by today's Waldeck-Frankenberg district, which took over most of the forest and the princely castles. In return, the princely family was granted a usufruct right to the Arolser Castle, the outbuildings and some agricultural areas and a forestry office was given. A non-profit family foundation was established with the foundation of the Princely House of Waldeck and Pyrmont to maintain and maintain the castle inventory, the library and the art collections.

Todays use

German definitive stamp from 2004 from the series of sights

In 2009 the renovation and restoration work that had been going on since 1987 was completed. Today the castle houses a museum of the Princely Foundation, which offers guided tours through the state rooms and salons, an exhibition on Waldeck military history, a municipal museum with changing exhibitions, a registry office, and it is still inhabited by the descendants of the princely family. In the summer months, the Arols Baroque Festival is staged in the castle and castle concerts are given in the Stone Hall. The Adolf Brehm library , which is important in the German-speaking world, is located in part of the west wing .


Artificial iron casting inside the castle

The baroque staircase, the garden hall and the white hall are the dominant representative rooms . Inside, the ceilings were stuccoed by Julius Ludwig Rothweils the Elder. Ä. Andrea Gallasini ornately furnished in baroque style. The ceiling paintings from 1721 to 1722 are by the Italian painter Carlo Lodovico Castelli . In 1721 the Kassel painter Magnus de Quitter made the over- portals for the Palatinate Room and the Crown Prince's Room . Sculptures by Christian Daniel Rauch , Ernst Rietschel and Alexander Trippel adorn the rooms. The living rooms are furnished with valuable Dutch tapestries, furniture and paintings from the 18th century . The only oil painting by Heinrich Aldegrever , pictures by Martin van Meytens , Ziessens and Heinrich and Friedrich August Tischbeins can be found in Arolsen Castle . The most important painting is the work Iphigenie recognizes Orestes by Wilhelm Tischbein . The White Hall with a gallery is located above the garden hall . In a side wing there is an extensive library with old, historically significant books, as well as a rich historical collection of graphics. An extensive collection of iron art castings is also exhibited in Arolsen Castle.



The castle pond

The French garden belonging to the castle no longer exists in its entirety. The small circular boxwood rondel at the main portal has been preserved in a purely stylistic manner in French garden architecture . In 1992 Jeff Koons showed his work "Puppy", a twelve-meter-high "dog" consisting of 17,000 flowers, in the boxwood rondel parallel to documenta IX . After the modernist changes, an English garden with a pond from the 18th century is attached to the residential palace. The garden architectural design elements include an old avenue by the castle pond, which is still almost completely preserved today.

Farm buildings

The castle includes a farm yard with an orangery, a garden center and a riding hall designed by Theodor Escher from 1819 to 1824 .


  • Eduard Brauns: Walks through Northern Hesse and Waldeck . A. Bernecker Verlag, Melsungen 1971.
  • Bernhard alphabet, Birgit Kümmel (Ed.): The renovation of the Arolsen residence. 1986-2009 . Theiss, Stuttgart 2009. ISBN 978-3-8062-2327-9 .
  • Dieter Großmann: Arolsen Castle. 11th edition. Deutscher Kunstverlag, Munich / Berlin 1991. ( Large monuments , issue 147)
  • Gerhard Menk : Arolsen: Residence formation and palace construction under small-state conditions. In: Bernd Heidenreich, Klaus Böhme (Ed.): Hessen. History and politics. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 2000, ISBN 3-17-016323-X , pp. 225-233 ( writings on the political regional studies of Hesse 5).
  • Rolf Müller (Ed.): Palaces, castles, old walls. Published by the Hessendienst der Staatskanzlei, Wiesbaden 1990, ISBN 3-89214-017-0 , p. 17.
  • Franz Weinitz: The princely residence palace at Arolsen. History, architecture and art history. Leipzig 1907

Web links

Commons : Arolsen Castle  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Homepage Waldeckischen Domanialverwaltung ( Memento from October 12, 2015 in the Internet Archive )