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Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape

Coordinates: 48°46′33″N 16°46′30″E / 48.77583°N 16.77500°E / 48.77583; 16.77500
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Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape
UNESCO World Heritage Site
from top: Lednice Castle, Valtice Castle, Rendezvous Pavilion, one of Lednice Ponds, John's Castle, Rajsna Colonnade, Venetian fountain in Lednice Castle garden, view on Lednice Castle park with Minaret
LocationLednice and Valtice, Czech Republic
CriteriaCultural: (i), (ii), (iv)
Reference763
Inscription1996 (20th Session)
Area14,320 ha (35,400 acres)
Coordinates48°46′33″N 16°46′30″E / 48.77583°N 16.77500°E / 48.77583; 16.77500
Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape is located in Czech Republic
Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape
Location of Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape in Czech Republic

The Lednice–Valtice Cultural Landscape (also Lednice–Valtice Area or Lednice–Valtice Complex, Czech: Lednicko-valtický areál) is a cultural-natural landscape complex of 283.09 square kilometres (109.30 sq mi) in the South Moravian Region of the Czech Republic. It comprises the municipalities of Lednice, Valtice and Hlohovec, and the rural area of Břeclav.

In 1996, the Lednice-Valtice Area was registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List because of its unique mix of Baroque, Neolassical, and neo-Gothic architecture, and its history as a cultural landscape designed intentionally by a single family.[1] It is adjacent to the Pálava Landscape Protected Area (Pálava Biosphere Reserve), a biosphere reserve registered by UNESCO several years before.[2] The close proximity of two cultural landscapes protected by UNESCO is unique.

History

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The House of Liechtenstein acquired Valtice (German name: Feldsberg) Castle in 1249, which marked the beginning of their settlement in the area. It remained the principal Liechtenstein residence for 700 years, until 1939 and World War II.[3] Valtice Castle was expanded in late Romanesque style in the first half of the 13th century, but was badly damaged in the Hussite Wars and later rebuilt by Charles I, Prince of Liechtenstein, in the Baroque style. From the 14th century, Lednice (German name: Eisgrub) was a fortified manor belonging to the Valtice estate and from 1680 it was expanded into a palace that was redesigned in a Tudor Gothic Revival style (then: "Old English style") between 1846 and 1858 by Prince Aloys II.

17th–19th centuries

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The Princes of Liechtenstein transformed their properties Feldsberg (Valtice) and Eisgrub (Lednice) into one large and designed private park between the 17th and 20th centuries. During the 19th century, the princes continued transforming the area as a large traditional English landscape park. Feldsberg was part of Austria until 1919,Eisgrub part of the Kingdom of Bohemia, both member states of the Austro-Hungarian Empire under the Habsburg rule, with the Austrian-Bohemian border running through the park between the two castles. The 1919 Treaty of Saint-Germain stipulated that the city of Feldsberg, which in 1910 was about 97% inhabited by German-speaking Lower Austrians, became part of Czechoslovakia.

The Baroque and neo-Gothic architecture of the chateaux are married with smaller buildings and a landscape that was fashioned according to the English principles of landscape architecture.[3]

In 1715 these two chateaux (castles) were connected by a 7 km (4.3 miles) long landscape avenue and road, later renamed for the poet Petr Bezruč, due to his poem Valčice describing a journey to Lednice after tasting vine in Valtice. Whilst both Lednice and Valtice have grown since then, and the road doesn't connect the chateaux as once intended, a large part of this avenue remains in use to this day. The Lednice Ponds are situated between the town of Valtice and villages of Lednice and Hlohovec; as are the Mlýnský, Prostřední, Hlohovecký, and Nesyt Ponds. A substantial part of the cultural landscape complex is covered in pine forests, known as the "Pine−wood" (Boří les), and in areas adjacent to the Thaya River with riparian forests.[3]

20th century

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In 1918 the region became part of new Czechoslovakia. The Liechtenstein family opposed the annexation of Czech territory into Sudetenland by Nazi Germany, and as a consequence their properties were confiscated by the Nazis, and the family then relocated to Vaduz in 1939. After World War II the Beneš decrees resulted in the confiscation of all Liechtenstein property in Czechoslovakia, as the family is seen as German in nationality to this day by the Czech state. The family made several legal attempts for restitution of the properties, but the communist regime was not interested in restitution of property to exiled aristocracy.

After the Czechoslovakian Velvet Revolution in 1989, the Liechtenstein descendants again renewed legal attempts for restitution, which were repeatedly denied by the Czech state, the present day owner of the properties.[4]

Features

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The principal elements are:

  • Chateau Valtice (German : Schloss Feldsberg) and its contiguous town of Valtice
  • Lednice Castle (German : Schloss Eisgrub) and its contiguous village of Lednice
  • The village of Hlohovec

Pavilions and follies

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St Hubert Chapel

In addition to the castles, there are many large to small residential pavilions located throughout the designed landscape, often serving as chateau or hunting lodges.[5]

Temple of the Three Graces
  • Temple of the Three Graces (Tři Grácie)
      — a semicircle gallery with allegorical statues of Sciences and Muses and a statue of the Three Graces from the 1820s
  • Pond House (Rybniční zámeček)
      — at the shore of one of the Lednice Ponds
Nový dvůr
Pohansko

Preservation

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The garden follies and the conservatory of Lednice Park were listed in the 1998 World Monuments Watch by the World Monuments Fund, for their deteriorating condition resulting from insufficient financial resources.[6] The Fund had previously studied the preservation of Lednice and Valtice Castles, and after 1998 it helped fund restoration of the Valtice Rendezvous folly as a demonstration project with support from American Express.[7]

See also

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References

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  1. ^ "Lednice-Valtice Cultural Landscape". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Retrieved 2021-04-02.
  2. ^ "Pálava Nature Reserve | Mikulov.cz". mikulov.cz. Retrieved 2021-04-02.
  3. ^ a b c Sváček, Libor (2015). UNESCO. pp. 60–71. ISBN 978-80-7339-067-9.
  4. ^ "The former Liechtenstein possessions of Lednice-Valtice". Minor Sights. September 2014. Retrieved 4 October 2014.
  5. ^ The term zámeček (German: Schlösschen, literally a small château) — is usually translated here as a "manor house" — or a "hunting lodge" (Czech: lovecký zámeček, German: Jagdschlösschen), if it served for hunting.
  6. ^ World Monuments Fund – Lednice and Valtice Cultural Landscape
  7. ^ Elaine Louie, New York Times, "Saving Endangered Art and Architecture," June 25, 1998.

Sources

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  • Kordiovský, Emil – Klanicová Evženie (eds.), Město Břeclav, Muzejní a vlastivědná společnost, Brno (2001).
  • Památkový ústav v Brně: text on the reverse of a tourist map, Shocart, Zlín (1998).
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