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Schmidtburg in the Hahnenbachtal

Schmidtburg in the Hahnenbachtal

Creation time : 926
Castle type : Hilltop castle
Conservation status: ruin
Standing position : Ministeriale
Place: Schneppenbach
Geographical location 49 ° 50 '46 "  N , 7 ° 23' 27"  E Coordinates: 49 ° 50 '46 "  N , 7 ° 23' 27"  E
Height: 321  m above sea level NHN
Schmidtburg (Rhineland-Palatinate)

The Schmidtburg is the ruin of a hilltop castle on the parish of the local community Schneppenbach in the Bad Kreuznach district in Rhineland-Palatinate .

Geographical location

The ruins of the hilltop castle are located in a bend in the river at 321  m above sea level. NN above the Hahnenbach valley in the Hunsrück . On the opposite side of the valley, the Altburg , a Celtic castle complex, and the Herrenberg visitor mine, an abandoned slate mine, can be reached on foot.


The castle complex is divided into an upper and a lower castle and is one of the largest castles in the area. The upper castle is separated from the rest of the complex by a ditch. It consisted of several residential buildings and a keep , the remains of which were found during excavations. The upper castle was the seat of the Kurtrier bailiff of the office of the same name . The extensive area of ​​the lower castle was built on with numerous Burgmannen houses.


Schmidtburg is said to have been built as early as 926 by the three Franconian noblemen Franco, Hunpert and Norpolt to protect against Hungarian invasions; the first reliable documentary mention was made in 1084 in connection with the new owner Emicho. His son, Emicho II, inherited the Schmidtburg and later gave himself the nickname Comes silvestris , Wildgraf .

The castle is one of the ancestral castles of the Wildgraves. In 1258 and 1277 the property was divided and several lines were formed. Personal disputes between the Counts of the Schmidtburg and Kyrburg lines led to the Schmidtburg being entrusted to the Elector and Archbishop Balduin von Trier . After the Schmidtburg line died out, the latter moved in as a settled fiefdom. Until 1342 the wild counts tried unsuccessfully to regain control of the castle through various feuds. Thus the Schmidtburg for was kurtrierischen country castle and seat of an office.

In the 14th century there was a large number of knight families on the lower castle who lived as castle men in the castle. Most of these dwellings were abandoned during the 15th and 16th centuries. Only the Schenk von Schmidtburg family remained on the lower castle and expanded the northwest corner into a largely independent complex.

While the lower castle was already deteriorating in the 16th century, the remaining fortifications were finally destroyed by the French in 1688 during the War of the Palatinate Succession .

Only a house and a farm building remained for the bailiffs, who administered the Electoral Trier office from there until the end of the 18th century.

But Johannes Bückler , known as the Schinderhannes, also used the castle ruins as accommodation while fleeing from Kirner and Mainz gendarmes.

Picture gallery


  • Otto Conrad: The history of the Schmidtburg . Rheinberg 1963.
  • Achim H. Schmidt: Count's seat in Roman ruins? - Building history observations at the Schmidtburg ruins in the southern Hunsrück . In: Olaf Wagener (Ed.): Castles in the Hunsrück. A landscape of castles in the flow of times . Michael Imhof Verlag, Petersberg 2011, ISBN 978-3-86568-744-9 , pp. 62-78.
  • Alexander Thon , Stefan Ulrich u. Achim Wendt, "... where a mighty tower defiantly looks down". Castles in the Hunsrück and on the Nahe, Regensburg: Schnell & Steiner 2013, ISBN 978-3-7954-2493-0 , pp. 128-133.
  • Ulrich Wöllner: The Schmidtburg . Spay 1974.

Web links

Commons : Schmidtburg  - Collection of Images

Individual evidence