Marburg Castle

The History of Marburg Castle

LocationMarburg, Hesse, Germany (Google Map)
Open for VisitorsYes
Owned byUnknown
Rooms AvailableYes (events and film screenings)

Also known as Landgrafenschloss Marburg and Marburger Schloss, Marburg Castle was originally used as the first residence of Landgraviate of Hesse in the 11th century. Since 1981, it has been used as a museum and event venue. This castle is a real reflection of German culture and royalty.


Marburg Castle was built in the 11th century as a fort. Later, it became the Landgraviate of Hesse’s (HRE) residence, a principality of the Holy Roman Empire. The castle was used by his brother after Landgraviate of Hesse died. However, Sophie of Brabant, Landgraviate’s daughter, successfully won the castle for her son Henry.

The Marburg Colloquy, a meeting focusing on solving disputes between Martin Luther and Ulrich Zwingli over the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, was held in the Marburg castle in 1529. The information for the in-between history of the castle is unclear.  

Marburg was the centre of the uprising in 1806 and 1810 against the French. It is believed that the Marburg Castle was partially destroyed during that time. It is also believed that the castle was once used as a prison.

Now, the castle is operated as a well-organised museum filled with some German historical gems. Several displays from the 11th century onwards are there to explore. If you are visiting Marburg, don’t forget to visit this beautiful castle.


Marburg Castle
Marburg Castle, by Nikanos, is licensed under CC SA 1.0

The first structure of Marburg Castle was constructed of wood. Around the 11th century, it was transformed into a stone building. Later, a residential castle tower was added to it. It also included a square keep protected by circular stone walls. A lot of construction work has taken place in the castle ever since.

The latest structure of the castle consists of one of the most beautiful secular Gothic halls in Germany, a castle chapel built in 1288, and a multicolour interior design. The Prince’s hall of the castle is decorated with a precious relic that reflects the biblical story of the Prodigal son. The walls of the castle are all intact, and only some of the moat structure stands there.

You will find some religious art from the 12th century onwards on the first floor. The second floor includes the items further along the time, like shields and armours worn by knights. The third floor has all the furniture, clothing, and art pieces from the 11th century focusing on Church Art, Bourgeois living, and State Rulership themes. You can explore all the floors of the castle museum via stairs or lift.

The Park around Marburg Castle includes winding store paths and steep stairs. The ruins of ancient fortifications and religious buildings are also found on the castle’s land. The view from the castle is breathtaking, and you can see the entire town from its top.

Note: Some rooms inside Marburg Castle might be under construction, so you may not be able to access them. Other than that, everything about Marburg Castle’s interior and exterior is magical.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who built the Marburg Castle?

The Marburg Castle was built by the first Hessian Landgrave, Heinrich I, on the site of the previous stronghold. It was the first strong and considerable structure seen in the castle’s location.

How many steps are there to the castle of Marburg?

It is about 400 steps to the castle of Marburg. The whole way is filled with historic buildings, green havens, and half-timbered houses. The stairs are also available on the passage to easily help you reach the 1000 years old Marburg castle.

Where is Marburg Castle?

Marburg Castle is a beautiful fort in Marburg, Germany, located on the top of Schlossberg.

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Nitesh Kuchhal, an IIM Calcutta graduate, is more than an educator—he's a mentor. With a passion for leadership and entrepreneurship, and travel. He has explored over 20 countries. Beyond teaching, he dives into psychology and discusses social issues. Though he is not a history expert, he enjoys learning about it through books, adding a historical touch to his many interests.

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