Moritzburg Castle - beautiful example of Saxon Baroque style
About 13 kilometres north-west of the Dresden is located Baroque castle Morizburg. It is one of the most picturesque castles in Saxony, Germany. The castle lies on a symmetrical artificial island and has four round towers that beautifully reflect in the blue water of the pond. It is named after Duke Moritz of Saxony, who had a hunting lodge built in the Renaissance style on a granite dome in 1542. The surrounding woodlands and lakes have been a favourite hunting area of the electors and kings of Saxony.
Between 1661 and 1671 the Baroque chapel was added to the castle. The chapel was consecrated in a Catholic rite in 1697 during the coronation of Augustus the Strong to the King of Poland.
Augustus the Strong in 1723 began the large renovation work from Renaissance to Baroque hunting and pleasure palace. During the reconstruction works the large pond surrounding the castle’s artificial island was built from what was originally four smaller ponds. One alley running directly east visually connects the castle with the other buildings in surroundings. The park and the gardens in the French style are added to the castle on the adjacent land to the north. The garden's layout follows that of other European royal courts of the time.
The best Saxon craftsmen and artists collaborated on the interiors of the seven halls and over 200 rooms of the castle.
After the death of Augustus the Strong, the conversion remained unfinished. The surroundings of the castle were further developed by Elector Frederick Augustus III of Saxony, a great-grandson of Augustus II the Strong, at the end of the 18th century.The last resident of the castle Morizburg was Prince Ernst Heinrich of Saxony. He was dispossessed in 1945 by the postwar Soviet administration.
Today Moritzburg is a renowned meeting place for tourists and lovers of Saxon Baroque. The interior of the castle is furnished with examples of opulent baroque decor from the time of Augustus the Strong. The walls are covered in 17th century gold-gilded leather. Many rooms' furnishings are dedicated to courtly hunting. Eleven rooms are decorated with painted leather wallpaper from the 17th century.
Moritzburg Castle offers the guided tours. The audio guide is available in German, English and Czech at the cash desk.
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