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  • Feste Dilsberg

    Dilsberg is located just east of Heidelberg on the Neckar River, directly across from Neckarsteinach.

    There are no good words to describe it that I know, so I will hand off to a better writer, Mark Twain, who described his visit there in his writing “A Tramp Abroad”.

    “For Dilsberg is a quaint place. It is most quaintly & picturesquely situated, too. Imagine the beautiful river before you; then a few rods of brilliant green sward on its opposite shore; then a sudden hill--no preparatory gently rising slopes, but a sort of instantaneous hill-- a hill two hundred & fifty or three hundred feet high, as round as a bowl, with the same taper upward that an inverted bowl has, & with about the same relation of height to diameter that distinguishes a bowl of good honest depth--a hill which is thickly clothed with green bushes--a comely, shapely hill, rising abruptly out of the dead level of the surrounding green plains, visible from a great distance down the bends of the river, & with just exactly room on the top of its head for its steepled & turreted & roof-clustered cap of architecture, which same is tightly jammed & compacted within the perfectly round hoop of the ancient village wall.

    “There is no house outside the all on the whole hill, or any vestige of a former house; all the houses are inside the wall, but there isn't room for another one. It is really a finished town, & has been finished a very long time. There is no space between the wall & the first circle of buildings; no, the village wall is itself the rear wall of the first circle of buildings, & the roofs jut a little over the wall & thus furnish it with eaves. The general level of the massed roofs is gracefully broken & relieved by the dominating towers of the ruined castle & the tall spires of a couple of churches; so, from a distance Dilsberg has rather more the look of a king's crown than a cap. That lofty green eminence & its quaint coronet form quite a striking picture, you may be sure, in the flush of the evening sun….

    . But the principal show, the chief pride of the children, was the ancient & empty well in the grass-grown court of the castle. Its massive stone curb stands up three or four feet above-ground, & is whole & uninjured. The children said that in the Middle Ages this well was four hundred feet deep, & furnished all the village with an abundant supply of water, in war & peace. They said that in the old day its bottom was below the level of the Neckar, hence the water-supply was inexhaustible….

    “But there were some who believed it had never been a well at all, & was never deeper than it is now--eighty feet; that at that depth a subterranean passage branched from it & descended gradually to a remote place in the valley, where it opened into somebody's cellar or other hidden recess, & that the secret of this locality is now lost. Those who hold this belief say that herein lies the explanation that Dilsberg, besieged by Tilly & many a soldier before him, was never taken: after the longest & closest sieges the besiegers were astonished to perceive that the besieged were as fat & hearty as ever, & were well furnished with munitions of war--therefore it must be that the Dilsbergers had been bringing these things in through the subterranean passage all the time.”

    [The entire text is available at http://www.mastertexts.com/Twain_Mar...pter00019.htm.

    JS
    Attached Files
    Barcsi János ispán vezérőrnagy
    Time Magazine's Person of the Year for 2003 & 2006


    "Never pet a burning dog."

    RECOMMENDED WEBSITES:
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    http://www.sca.org
    http://www.scv.org/
    http://www.scouting.org/

  • #2
    Re: Feste Dilsberg

    Originally posted by Janos
    Dilsberg is located just east of Heidelberg on the Neckar River, directly across from Neckarsteinach.

    There are no good words to describe it that I know, so I will hand off to a better writer, Mark Twain, who described his visit there in his writing “A Tramp Abroad”.

    “For Dilsberg is a quaint place. It is most quaintly & picturesquely situated, too. Imagine the beautiful river before you; then a few rods of brilliant green sward on its opposite shore; then a sudden hill--no preparatory gently rising slopes, but a sort of instantaneous hill-- a hill two hundred & fifty or three hundred feet high, as round as a bowl, with the same taper upward that an inverted bowl has, & with about the same relation of height to diameter that distinguishes a bowl of good honest depth--a hill which is thickly clothed with green bushes--a comely, shapely hill, rising abruptly out of the dead level of the surrounding green plains, visible from a great distance down the bends of the river, & with just exactly room on the top of its head for its steepled & turreted & roof-clustered cap of architecture, which same is tightly jammed & compacted within the perfectly round hoop of the ancient village wall.

    “There is no house outside the all on the whole hill, or any vestige of a former house; all the houses are inside the wall, but there isn't room for another one. It is really a finished town, & has been finished a very long time. There is no space between the wall & the first circle of buildings; no, the village wall is itself the rear wall of the first circle of buildings, & the roofs jut a little over the wall & thus furnish it with eaves. The general level of the massed roofs is gracefully broken & relieved by the dominating towers of the ruined castle & the tall spires of a couple of churches; so, from a distance Dilsberg has rather more the look of a king's crown than a cap. That lofty green eminence & its quaint coronet form quite a striking picture, you may be sure, in the flush of the evening sun….

    . But the principal show, the chief pride of the children, was the ancient & empty well in the grass-grown court of the castle. Its massive stone curb stands up three or four feet above-ground, & is whole & uninjured. The children said that in the Middle Ages this well was four hundred feet deep, & furnished all the village with an abundant supply of water, in war & peace. They said that in the old day its bottom was below the level of the Neckar, hence the water-supply was inexhaustible….

    “But there were some who believed it had never been a well at all, & was never deeper than it is now--eighty feet; that at that depth a subterranean passage branched from it & descended gradually to a remote place in the valley, where it opened into somebody's cellar or other hidden recess, & that the secret of this locality is now lost. Those who hold this belief say that herein lies the explanation that Dilsberg, besieged by Tilly & many a soldier before him, was never taken: after the longest & closest sieges the besiegers were astonished to perceive that the besieged were as fat & hearty as ever, & were well furnished with munitions of war--therefore it must be that the Dilsbergers had been bringing these things in through the subterranean passage all the time.”

    [The entire text is available at http://www.mastertexts.com/Twain_Mar...pter00019.htm.

    JS
    Now this is a Castle!!

    Subterranean passages are sneaky things and I often wonder why beseigers never made more concerted efforts to look for things like this. But then, if they'd found them, I guess history wouldn't be as interesting.

    Dr. S.
    Imagine a ball of iron, the size of the sun. And once a year a tiny sparrow brushes its surface with the tip of its wing. And when that ball of iron, the size of the sun, is worn away to nothing, your punishment will barely have begun.

    www.sinisterincorporated.co.uk

    www.tabletown.co.uk

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    • #3
      Re: Re: Feste Dilsberg

      Originally posted by Doctor Sinister
      Now this is a Castle!!
      No, O Great One!

      It's a fort (German: Feste or Veste) -- it was not the residence of a nobleman, there was merely a captain and the garrison.

      JS
      Barcsi János ispán vezérőrnagy
      Time Magazine's Person of the Year for 2003 & 2006


      "Never pet a burning dog."

      RECOMMENDED WEBSITES:
      http://www.mormon.org
      http://www.sca.org
      http://www.scv.org/
      http://www.scouting.org/

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