The Royal Castle in Warsaw

Royal Castle in Warsaw

Royal Castle in Warsaw ©archer10 (Dennis)/Flick

The Royal Castle in Warsaw was the official residence of the Polish monarchs and today serves as a museum and is subordinated to the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

It is located in the Castle Square, at the entrance to the Old Town of Warsaw. The personal offices of the king and the administrative offices of the Royal Court of Poland were located there from the 16th century until the division of Poland.

During its long history the Royal Castle was repeatedly devastated and plundered by Swedish, German and Russian armies.

Some important dates from the history of the Royal Castle

The Constitution of May 3, 1791, which was the first modern codified national constitution of Europe and the second national constitution in the world, was drafted here by the lower chamber of the Polish Parliament.

Castle Square in Warsaw

Castle Square in Warsaw ©Guillaume Speurt/Flick

In the 19th century, after sauteing the Rebellion in November, it was used as an administrative center by the Tsar of Russia.

Between 1926 and the Second World War the Royal Castle in Warsaw was the seat of the Polish president, Ignacy Moscicki. After its devastation by the Nazis during the Warsaw Uprising, the Castle was rebuilt.

In 1980, the Royal Castle was registered in the UNESCO World Heritage List together with the Old Town. Today is a national historic monument, and is listed as a national museum.

The architecture of the Royal Castle of Warsaw

Currently, the  Royal Castle in Warsaw has an imposing brick façade, with a length of 90 m and a view over the Castle Square. At each end of the facade is a square tower with a bulbous dome. The tower of Sigismund is located in the center of the main facade, flanked on both sides by the castle. According to some theories this 60 m high immense tower is inspired by the tower in Smolensk, Russia.

Royal Castle in Warsaw

Royal Castle in Warsaw ©archer10 (Dennis)/Flick

The interior of the Royal Castle in Warsaw consists of different rooms, all carefully restored and containing as many original exhibits as it was possible to recover from the destruction of Second World War.

The Lanckoroński Collection of the Royal Castle in Warsaw consists of 37 paintings donated by Countess Karolina Lanckorońska which include, among others, two original paintings by Rembrandt, The Father of the Jewish Bride and the Jewish Bride.

The Jagiellonian Rooms gives home to a number of portraits of the Jagiellon dynasty, a royal dynasty originating from Lithuania (14th and 16th centuries). In the Royal Apartments lived King Stanisław August Poniatowski (17.01. 1732 – 2/12/1798, the last King and Grand Duke of the Polish-Lithuanian community). The Rooms of the Parliament is the place where the Polish democracy was formed beginning with the 16th century.

Chamber of the Polish Senate

Chamber of the Polish Senate ©-bLy-/Flick

 

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