|The entrance to Burg Arras (All text and photos copyright to Eventful Woman)|
The tourist pamphlet said all the right things to get the attention of any Eventful Person: The eventful history of Arras Castle (Burg Arras) is closely linked with the eventful German history from the beginning Roman period up to the end of the Middle Ages.
|View of castle from car park|
(after the mist cleared in the afternoon)
The hill was fortified by the Romans around 350 AD and its name harks back to this time (Latin: arrha = fortified mountain).
The castle was built between 900 and 950 AD to protect the area from the invading Normans. Like so many others in the Mosel Valley, the castle was wrecked by the French (under the orders of Louis XIV (The Sun King) in the late 1600s.
|One of the many display items|
The memorial room to the former President of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), Heinrich Lübke, – a relative of today´s owners - is definitely worth a look. Some of the gifts he received while in office (1959 - 1969) are on display such as the exquisite Japanese and Korean screens and a wall-hanging/tapestry from Madam Pompadour´s property, which was presented by the President of the French Republic. For those who like political history, check out the photos on the walls of President Lübke with several of his contemporaries, such as President Lyndon Johnson and President Charles de Gaulle.
There's supposedly a splendid view from the top of the castle. I even walked up hill to see for myself but the morning mist had still not cleared.
|Detail in the Korean screen|
It seems that nearly everyone has been involved with Burg Arras at some point - the Celts, Romans, Normans, French, Prussians and Germans, including some famous names like Bruno II of Berg, who was the Archbishop of Cologne, and who consecrated the on-site chapel. The knights of Arras made the castle their home in the early Middle Ages. Emperor Maximilian I stopped for the night in March 1512. While Napoleon may not have been here (there's no record of it) he clearly knew of the castle, as there are two letters signed by him on display.
|Napoleon's letters (click on the photo to enlarge)|
|Window in the castle|
Speaking of scary, make sure you also take the old stairs down to the horror chamber dungeons beneath the castle.
Find out more:
- Burg Arras / Arras Castle
- Heinrich Lübke
- The town of Alf
- Walks and other activities along the Mosel (from Zell an der Mosel)
- Zell an der Mosel and the area (click on the Union Jack flag to get the page into English).
|Eventful Woman (in red) exploring Burg Arras' Keep|