In the heart of Hunedoara, an area full of mystery and legends, there is a castle less visited by travelers but much more worth seeing, some say, than the others that everybody goes see. Close to the ruins of the ancient capital of Dacia Felix, Sarmizegetusa, close to one of the oldest Christian churches in Europe (Densus) , turned into a church from a Roman temple, close to the Monastery of Prislop, there lies the Castle of the Corvins, the citadel of forgotten legends. The settlement is mentioned in documents of its time as early as the XIVth century and it’s tied to the archdiaconate of Hunedoara. The property had been donated to the Voicu family (Iancu of Hunedoara was the son) by the King Sigismund of Luxemburg in 1409 but, in time, the , had several owners who changed its appearance to their liking.
The building was greatly modified as it served as a fortified strategical place as well as a feudal residence. The various owner of the castle added in time towers, halls and guest rooms to it.
In the courtyard, next to the chapel built by Iancu de Hunedoara, there is a 30 meter deep fountain. The legends tell that this fountain had been dug by three Turkish prisoners and they were promised freedom as soon as they would reach the water. But after fifteen years of toil, when they finished the fountain, the owners didn’t keep their word. They say that the inscription on the wall of the fountain means: ”You have water now, but you have no heart”. But in reality, the content of the inscription, deciphered by specialists, says: ”The one who dug this fountain is Hassan, one who lives as a slave to the ghiauri*, in the citadel next to the church.”
Several artistic movies, documentaries or commercials have been filmed here – the Romanian movies “Vlad Tepes”, “Mihai Viteazul”, “Alexandru Lapusneanu”, international movies: “David”, “The cursed kings”, “Lacqou le Croquat”, “Blood Rayne”, “Francois Villon” and they will continue with “The Biography of Martin Luther”, “Henry the VIIIth”, “The Black Arrow”.
Why makes it a unique castle?
It is because it is the most representative building for the military architecture of the 15th century, and it reunites the most developed elements of civil architecture, The Main Palace being of French inspiration, unique in the area dominated by the Hungarians at that time. You will find more details on the official page of The Museum of the Corvin Castle and on the Wikipedia page dedicated to it. Text and pictures courtesy of Discovering Romania.
*Ghiauri was the term used by the Turkish warriors to refer to the people of a different religion than theirs.