Čachtice Castle  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Čachtice Castle is a castle ruin in Slovakia next to the village of Čachtice. It stands on a hill featuring rare plants, and has been declared a national nature reserve for this reason. The castle was a residence and later the prison of the world's most prolific female serial killer, the Countess Alžbeta (Elizabeth Báthory: 1560-1614).

Čachtice was built in the mid-13th century by Kazimir of the House of Hunt-Poznan as a sentry on the road to Moravia. Later, it belonged to Matúš Čák, of the Stibor zo Stiboríc family, and then to the famous Bloody Lady Elizabeth Báthory. Čachtice, it's surrounding lands and villages, was a wedding gift from the Nádasdy family upon Elizabeth's marriage to Ferencz Nádasdy in 1575. It is famous now because her sadism exceeded even the violence and cruelty normally permitted to powerful elites of the time. It is very likely she was insane, but the Countess Alžbeta's excesses were aided and abetted by her husband and others, and her murders ignored for years by her powerfully connected family.

Originally, Čachtice was a Romanesque castle with an interesting horse-shoe shaped residence tower. It was turned to a Gothic castle later and its size was increased in the 15th and 16th centuries. A Renaissance renovation followed in the 17th century. Finally, in 1708 the castle was captured and plundered by the rebels of Francis II Rákóczi. It has been in decay since.

Čachtice Castle in pop-culture

Along with Orava Castle, Čachtice Castle was used as the location for Count Orlok's castle in Nosferatu.

Čachtice was used as the castle ruins set featured in the opening sequence of the 1996 fantasy movie Dragonheart by Universal Pictures starring Dennis Quaid.

Live album Channeling Of Lady Elizabeth Bathory by multigenre jam band Štefánik, Perný & Kollár feat. Kofi was recorded in Višňové village, under Čachtice Castle in 2010.

Čachtice Castle was featured on the "Castle of the Blood Countess" episode of the ABC Family show The Scariest Places on Earth, as well as the August, 2008 episode "Tortured Souls" on the SyFy channels series Ghost Hunters International.

Juraj Jakubisko's 2008 film Bathory is set to Čachtice Castle, some scenes were filmed there.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Čachtice Castle" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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