Lichtenstein Castle (German: Schloss Lichtenstein) is a Gothic Revival castle built in the 1840s. It is situated on a cliff located near Honau on the Swabian Alb, Baden-Württemberg, Germany.
Historically, there has been a castle on the site located at the Albtrauf, above the source of the river Echaz since around 1200. It was twice destroyed, once in the Reichskrieg’s War of 1311 and again by the city-state of Reutlingen in 1377. The castle was not reconstructed and subsequently fell to ruin. It is today known as Burg Alt-Lichtenstein (“Old Lichtenstein”). A new castle was built c. 1390, around 500 m away from the ruin, in the location where today’s structure stands. After 1567, it lost its role as a lordly seat and fell into disrepair.In 1802, the land came into the hands of King Frederick I of Württemberg, who dismantled the ruins of the castle and built a hunting lodge there. In 1837, the land was bought from King Wilhelm I of Württemberg by his cousin Duke Wilhelm of Urach, Count of Württemberg, who, inspired by Wilhelm Hauff’s novel Lichtenstein, added the current castle in 1840–42. The romantic Gothic Revival design of the castle was created by the architect Carl Alexander Heideloff. In 1842, the castle was inaugurated in the presence of the king.
Today, the castle is still owned by the Dukes of Urach, but it is open to visitors. The castle contains a large collection of historic weapons and armour.
The romantic design of the castle inspired several other buildings. The design of the castle at Lietzow was based on Lichtenstein. Likewise, the house known as “Leckzapfen” in Osthofen took its cue from Lichtenfels (see List of historic buildings in Osthofen . A Cape Town businessman, Reynier Fritz, who was well known in advertising circles, first saw the 19th-century Schloss Lichtenstein in the land of his ancestors, and decided to one day replicate it in Hout Bay. He was able to start building in 1986 and 12 years later it was completed. He eventually turned it into a guest house before he died there. Sometime after his death, his widow, Christine, sold it to an overseas buyer.
The castle was used as a location for a 2009 film of Dornröschen (Sleeping Beauty). Lichtenstein appeared several times on stamps. In the late 1940s, the French occupation authorities issued a series of stamps which included a 84 Reichspfennig stamp showing the castle. In 1982, the Deutsche Bundespost Berlin issued a 35 Pfennig stamp depicting the castle. The castle served as the primary inspiration for Cammy’s stage in Super Street Fighter II.
|Architectural style||Gothic revival|
|Town or city||Honau|
|Client||Duke Wilhelm of Urach|
|Owner||Dukes of Urach|
|Design and construction|
|Architect||Carl Alexander Heideloff|