Kladno Castle  

A Baroque castle built in accordance with the designs of Kilian Ignaz Dientzentoher. It is the seat of the Castle Municipal Gallery. From the Benedictine period there is the castleChapel of St. Lawrence, which is open to the public.

Autor: Michal Sýkora, student PedF UK v Praze

The first reference to Kladno dates back to the beginning of the 14th century. A small manor was in possession of the branched Kladenský family  of Kladno. In the village of Kladno at that time there were three gothic fortresses, one of which was on the site of the present baroque castle. The other owner of the manor was the Žďárský family of  Žďár, who only in 1561 elevated  the former village to a feudal town and the town was granted these privileges, including a town coat of arms. The Renaissance castle has been  a dominant feature of the town since the 16th century. It was built between the 1540s and 1560s   as a result of rebuilding the gothic fortress from where the  masonry was taken, while the original ground plan was to be preserved. In 1701 the manor of Kladno was bought by the Tuscan Grand Duchess Anna Maria Franziska, but she immediately sold it to the Břevnov-Broumov Abbey in 1705. At that time the castle was terribly dilapidated, uninhabited and it was close to collapse.

At that time Othmar Zinke was Abbot, one of the greatest master builders of the Baroque in Bohemia. The esteemed architect Kilian Ignaz Dientzenhofer had acquainted himself already in 1723 with the situation in Kladno, but the financial situation did not allow for any radical reconstruction of the castle and its surroundings. In 1738 Benno Löbl became the Abbot and the financial situation of the manor was stabilized, therefore  more significant modifications could be considered, ones reflected in the present-day appearance of the castle.