Bruchsal Castle is a German palace in the town of
Bruchsal, situated about 25 km south of Speyer between Heidelberg and
Karlsruhe, in Baden-Württemberg.
Schloss Bruchsal History
When Damian Hugo Schönborn was elected Prince–Bishop of Speyer in
1719, he initially intended to rebuild the destroyed bishop’s palace that was attached to the
north flank of Speyer Cathedral, but the project brought him into conflict with the Protestant
He then decided to construct a new Residenz on the northern edge of
Bruchsal, which had been part of the bishopric of Speyer since the 11th century.
As war could be expected at any time in the area, the Residenz complex
was to consist of individual buildings separated from one another and grouped around
courtyards, an arrangement that would help to control the spread of fire. Plans were procured
from Maximilian von Welsch.
In 1728 Johann Georg Stahl (1687–1755) was appointed architect for the
Speyer bishopric, and he continued to oversee building operations on the site until his
The central block of Schloss Bruchsal was designed in
1725 by a young architect, Anselm F. Ritter zu Groenesteyn. During the summer of 1726 Damian
Hugo decided that a mezzanine should be inserted between the ground and main floors.
This created insurmountable problems for Ritter zu Groenesteyn, who
was unable to make his circular staircase (for which the foundations were already in place)
accommodate the extra height, and he soon resigned from the project.
He was replaced by Balthasar Neumann, who was consulted on all major
design decisions. From 1728 he took over such utilitarian structures as the riding hall,
arsenal and water system, but his most important contributions were the court and garden
façades of the palace and its staircase with adjoining spaces and formal rooms.
Neumann articulated the middle sections of the palace façades with
pilasters and string courses that framed large windows and glazed doors, giving the impression
of a masonry frame containing large sheets of glass.
In 1743 he was succeeded by Franz Christoph von Hutten, who completed
the building and the décor of many of the interiors at Schloss Bruchsal. The vaults of the
Fürstensaal (prince’s hall) and marble hall, and the stair dome were frescoed by Johann Zick
and his son, Januarius Zick between 1751 and 1754.
Later in the century, the formal garden was remodelled according to
the English style. After the secularization of the bishopric in the early 19th century,
Schloss Bruchsal was used by government officials.
Restorations in the early 1900s and 1930s provided detailed
documentation of the existing complex; when the buildings were extensively destroyed in World
War II, these records were available for the rebuilding project, which began in the
Visit Bruchsal Castle
Please contact the Service Centre at:
Tel: +49(0) 72 22 / 93 49 88 1 or +49(0) 72 22 / 97 81
Fax: +49(0) 72 22 / 93 49 88 2
Official website: http://www.schloss-bruchsal.de
Bruchsal Castle Address: Schlossraum, 4, 76646 Bruchsal, Germany. Get help with directions
using the map provided bellow:
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