Batestein Castle

Batestein Castle was commissioned by Gijsbert van Beusichem in 1370, after Vyanen Castle was found to no longer meet the requirements at the time. Gijsbert possibly named the castle after his wife Beatrix van Egmond (also known as Beate or Bate). Under Reinoud van Brederode (1492-1556), the castle became famed as one of the most beautiful in the Netherlands. Almost nothing remains of it after the Spaniards conquered and plundered the castle on 3 May 1567.

In 1628, Constantijn Huygens described Batestein Castle in Vianen as “a piece of paradise”. The castle was owned at the time by Johan Wolfert van Brederode, Field Marshal of Prince Maurits, who modernised and embellished it in spectacular fashion. For example, he built the Hofpoort and the pump which is now located on Hofplein. The gardens near the castle have earned much praise and admiration and are a very early example of Dutch Classicism, a style still known today from the gardens of ‘t Loo Palace and Versailles.

In 1696, most of the castle was lost in a fire and the rest fell into disrepair. The castle continued to be used as a military hospital, barracks and spa until it was finally demolished in the 19th Century.

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