Topics of coins

Moszna Castle

The Castle in Moszna in Upper Silesia is a residence located approximately 30 km from Opole. This extraordinary building, erected in the 17th century by Prussian families, is famous for its amazing fairy-tale architecture with 365 rooms, as well as 99 towers and turrets.

The first mention of the town of Moszna appeared in Księga henrykowska [Book of Henryków], in the part dated around 1310.

The architecturally fanciful, eclectic palace – with an orangery full of exotic plants adjacent to the residence – is surrounded by a vast, 200-hectare landscape park with centuries-old oak trees entered in the register of natural monuments.

For many years, the castle’s ownership changed frequently, and it was repeatedly rebuilt in various architectural styles. It ultimately came into the hands of one of the wealthiest dynasties in this part of Europe – the von Tiele-Winckler family, which became responsible for its final appearance, interior decoration style, and undeniable charm. The residence, which was expanded on a grand scale following a fire in 1896, obtained a stylistically diverse structure, which now surprises visitors with its wealth of ornamentation and sculptures.

The main body of the castle and the interior layouts were designed by Berlin-based architects, including Wilhelm Kimbel, a well-known specialist in modern interiors. The building’s owner, Franz Hubert von Tiele-Winckler, also repeatedly modified the designs. The west wing of the palace was added in order to provide comfortable accommodation to Wilhelm II, the Emperor of Germany and the King of Prussia, who used to participate in hunts organized at von Tiele- Winckler’s estate. The owner and architects decided that the so-called Lord’s Room, executed in an eclectic architectural style, would be the most prominent place in the castle.

A chapel with excellent acoustics was built right next to it. Within it, a stained-glass window from 1900, executed by the workshop of M. Luthi from Munich, has been preserved to this day.

During World War II, the Red Army stationed at the castle, causing considerable damage to its interior. A large part of the palace furnishings were destroyed, and most of the works of art stored there, which mainly included paintings and sculptures, were looted. After the war, the furniture and appliances were stolen, and only the permanently affixed elements of the interior decor remained. The building did not fall into ruin, however, and served as the seat of various institutions, including a sanatorium.

Currently, the palace and park complex serves as a conference and hotel centre, while chamber music concerts are held at the chapel, and art exhibitions are organized at the gallery. The oldest trees in the oak alley leading to the castle are 300 years old. In the park there is a pond with an island and a Chinesestyle bridge. Near the castle there is a cemetery with the tombs of people from the family of its previous owners. In the buildings of the former farm estate, there is a now stud farm facility that is globally renowned for breeding noble half-blood horses. The reverse side of the 5 zł coin from the series “Discover Poland” – “Moszna Castle” shows the main body of the castle with towers, along with visible details of the facade.

Prof. Juliusz A. Chrościcki