4 Castles and chateaux
5
Bezd!z
Reason to visit
The majestic ruin of this medieval castle
is one of the dominating features of the
Czech landscape. It has been a creative
inspiration for many artists, including
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who used motifs from the local legend
about hidden treasure in his opera
The Secret. The greatest Czech Romantic
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the castle famous in his epic poemMay,
a tale of tragic love. The nearby Mácha
Lake, named for the poet, is today
a centre for water sport and recreation.
Of historical interest
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could not have known that the sentry
castle he built in the second half of
the 13th century as a residence on his
occasional stays would soon after his
death become a prison for his 7-year-old
Be"ov
nad Teplou
Reason to visit
This chateau contains a unique
relic, which after the Crown Jewels
is the second most valuable treasure
belonging to the Czech Republic:
A splendidly decorated golden box,
commissioned in the 13th century by
the Belgian monastery of Benedictines
to hold the remains of St. John
the Baptist and St. Maurus.
It is among most beautiful examples
of the goldsmith’s art of the Middle
Ages and is the only one of its kind
in Central Europe.
Of historical interest
The last owners of the chateau,
the de Beauforts, were ordered
to leave the estate after 1945 because
of their collaboration with the Nazis
in occupied Czechoslovakia. They buried
son Wenceslas (Václav) and his widowed
queen for many long months.
In the 17th century the castle was turned
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its closure the castle deteriorated into
a picturesque ruin.
Because the castle has undergone
no major modifications, it retains
its authentic medieval atmosphere.
The most valuable building is the
chapel of the Royal Palace, a real jewel
of Gothic architecture. To admire
distant views of “Mácha’s region”
from an even greater height, climb
the massive 40-metre Great Tower,
which was the last refuge for local
inhabitants in the event of a siege
of the castle.
V–VIII Tuesday–Sunday,
IV and X weekends and public holidays.
Státní hrad Bezd!z
472 01 Doksy
the Reliquary of St. Maurus under
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they would one day return for it.
If a foreign merchant had not appeared
some years later and started to
negotiate with the Czechoslovak state
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valuable object, probably no one would
have learned of its existence. This
tangled case, which top Czechoslovak
criminologists worked to unravel,
was solved in 1985 and became the
inspiration for a detective novel.
The story of the Reliquary
of St. Maurus, including its painstaking
restoration by leading Czech
conservators, is told by an engaging
exhibition in the chateau.
V–IX Tuesday–Sunday,
IV and X weekends and public holidays.
Nám!stí 5. kv!tna 13
364 64 Be"ov nad Teplou
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