Falkenstein Castle (Harz)

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Falkenstein Castle
Burg Falkenstein
Burg Falkenstein im Harz (April 2009).jpg
Falkenstein Castle
Falkenstein Castle is located in Saxony-Anhalt
Falkenstein Castle
Falkenstein Castle
Coordinates 51°40′54″N 11°15′54″E / 51.68167°N 11.26500°E / 51.68167; 11.26500Coordinates: 51°40′54″N 11°15′54″E / 51.68167°N 11.26500°E / 51.68167; 11.26500
Type Hilltop castle
Site information
Condition Preserved or largely preserved
Site history
Built 1120 and 1180
The keep
The old kitchen
Falkenstein Castle viewed from the Selkesicht

Falkenstein Castle (German: Burg Falkenstein) is a German castle in the Harz mountains dating to the High Middle Ages period. It is located in the town of Falkenstein/Harz between Aschersleben and Harzgerode.


The castle lies high above the Selke valley in the district of Harz in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. Also nearby are the ruined medieval castles of Ackeburg and Old Falkenstein Castle.


Falkenstein was built between 1120 and 1180 and has been modified frequently since then, but still retains the character of a medieval castle. It has a commanding location and was never captured.

According to legend, Falkenstein Castle has its origins in a murder: around 1080, Egeno II of Konradsburg slew Count Adalbert of Ballenstedt in a fight, whereupon the murderer was allegedly made to give his family seat up to be converted into a monastery. As a result, Egeno's son, Burchard of Konradsburg, had the new Falkenstein Castle built.

In 1220, during the reign of Prince Henry of Anhalt the Anhalt ministerialis, Eike of Repgow, from what is now Reppichau, drew up here the Sachsenspiegel the first German law book. The book is dedicated to its commissioner, Hoyer of Falkenstein. In 1437 the castle was given as a fief by the Bishopric of Halberstadt to the House of Asseburg, in whose hands the castle remained until its confiscation after the Second World War.

Present use[edit]

Today the castle and its museum are one of the most popular destinations in the Harz mountains. It is part of the Romanesque Road. The castle has a falconry and a restaurant that offer traditional 'knightly' food (Ritteressen).

The castle was one of several backdrops in the seven-part children's series shot by GDR television, Spuk unterm Riesenrad, and one of the locations for the DEFA fairy tale film Schneeweißchen and Rosenrot ("Snow White and Rose Red"), as well as films in the GDR series Polizeiruf 110 The Entdeckung.

The castle is No. 200 in the network of hiking checkpoints known as the Harzer Wandernadel.


  • Sven Frotscher (1995) (in German), Burg Falkenstein and Schloss Meisdorf, Leipzig: Ed. Leipzig, ISBN 3-361-00434-9
  • Boje Schmuhl, ed. (2006) (in German), Burg Falkenstein, Dössel: Stekovics, ISBN 978-3-89923-131-1
  • Winfried Korf (1997) (in German), Burg Falkenstein, Wettin: Stekovics, ISBN 3-929330-79-2
  • Berent Schwineköper (Hrsg.): Provinz Saxony Anhalt. In: Handbuch der Historischen Stätten Deutschlands. Band 11. Alfred Kröner Verlag, Stuttgart 1987, p. 117–118, ISBN 3-520-31402-9

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