Malbork

 

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Malbork was founded as a settlement around a castle the erection of which started in 1274, when the Order of Teutonic Knights came to this land. In the course of about 30 years a small castle was built and it was named Marienburg, which means Mary's City.


In 1309 the Great Master of the Order, Siegfried von Feuchtwagen moved his residence from Venice to Malbork and thanks to this the castle and the city became the capital of the Teutonic state. Due to new needs the castle was extended. Thanks to its redevelopment which lasted for almost 40 years the initial castle was transformed into the part which is now called the High Castle. It was surrounded with moats and walls and was used as a residence of the Great Masters and the highest-ranked Teutonic officials. The Malbork Castle is regarded as the biggest Gothic stronghold in Europe. It was added to the world's cultural heritage list maintained by UNESCO in 1997. The castle is surrounded by belts of defensive walls with gates and towers. Malbork Castle is only 50 kilometers from Gdansk.



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