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Tematín castle is located about 15 Km southeast of Nové Mesto nad Váhom. It is one of the highest situated castles in Slovakia at and elevation of 564 meters above the sea level. It is a dominant of center Považie. It probably originated shortly after the tartar invasion around the middle of the 13th century. However the first written records date back to 1270.

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Together with Trenčín, Beckov and Čachtice castles they were providing defense for northwest border territories of Hungary. It was also defending lover ford through river Váh mentioned in documents in 1453. In 13th and 14th century it was the property of the king. The oldest buildings are in area of the upper castle that was made up of four-corner tower and fortified palace. In second half of the 14th century the castle lost its original strategic purpose and it went to private hands. In 1368, King Ludovít I has given the castle to his waiter Mikuláš and his brothers for their bravery in Neapol expedition.

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Later on it belonged to Thurzo, Ujlaky and at the end of the 17th century to Bescényi families. In order to keep up with the latest army technology they were always improving the defense system. Small narrow passage separated the upper part of the castle from the lower courtyards from whose two bastions were guarding the entrance secured by a moat. Last reconstruction of the upper part dates back to 17th century. During fierce fighting of Rakocyi uprising the castle was heavily damaged. It wasn’t rebuilt and slowly started to crumble.

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I visited the castle in summer 1999 after a huge windstorm and it took us over two hours to get to it from Nová Lehota. The views are spectacular and you can clearly see the Čachtice castle and the Váh Valley.



Published in the Slovak Heritage Live newsletter Volume 12, No.1, Spring 2004
Copyright © Vladimir Linder 2004  
3804 Yale Street, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada V5C 1P6
The above article and photographs may not be copied, reproduced, republished, or redistributed by any means including electronic, without the express written permission of
Vladimir Linder. All rights reserved.