Address: Malbork (Pomorskie)
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How does the largest castle on Earth look like?

2017-01-20 Khaiell

Fantasy depictions of huge castles usually show gargantuan white walls reaching the skies. Let's have a walk through a real, monstrous castle that never fell to a siege and see what was practical in castle construction

Malbork Castle (section of the High Castle)

Lets start from here:

Malbork Castle (outermost gate courtyard)
Malbork Castle (outermost gate courtyard)

Many castles would fit among these walls. But this is just a yard before the outermost gate.

When you pass the gate here you are still a long walk from the real entrance:

Malbork Castle (outer wall)
Malbork Castle (outer wall)

The tower in the distance is the actual heart of the castle. It's a long walk even if nobody bothers you.

Note that the large windows are most likely XIX century additions when the castle was used as a storage house by the Prussians.

And then when you get inside you reach the castle-within-castle:

Malbork Castle (section of the Middle Castle)
Malbork Castle (section of the Middle Castle)

Which is protected by a serious gatehouse with all the traps money could buy:

Malbork Castle (inside of the inner gate)
Malbork Castle (inside of the inner gate)

And then there is still another castle-within-castle:

Malbork Castle (section of the High Castle)
Malbork Castle (section of the High Castle)

And within this innermost castle there is still the tower to be handled:

Malbork Castle (tower of last defence)
Malbork Castle (tower of last defence)

So the bottom line is that it was much more practical to create a labyrinth of walls and gates (that can be opened wide for a legal visitor) rather than a very high structure that would require an hour of mountaineering just to get to the bathroom…

See the pictures as separate pages: Malbork Castle (section of the High Castle) * Malbork Castle (outermost gate courtyard) * Malbork Castle (outer wall) * Malbork Castle (section of the Middle Castle) * Malbork Castle (inside of the inner gate) * …more

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