Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Ludwigsburg Castle, Part 2: the rooms

This post will be a little picture heavy, but that's what castles do to me. I wish I had found out the age of some of the art pieces, but the castle in general looks as it did in the early 1800s.

The king's bedroom. Most of the castle is a mirror along the N/S axis, so the duchess/queen has identical rooms where applicable. The chair to the right of the bed is the main reason I wouldn't want to live in this time period - no plumbing.
Speaking of mirrors - The mirror room in the castle has around 250 mirrors. They are some of the few things that are not completely accurate reproductions of the period. It would have been way too expensive to us 17th century mirrors in this room. Other rooms in the castle have original mirrors, though.

The dining room was surprisingly small to me. This room and a neighboring room had pull-cords to ring the same bell. I really liked the blue curtains on the china cabinet.

The castle contains two churches, and the one on the king's side had his personal viewing room. He would listen with the windows open, and if the bishop said anything the king disagreed with, the king would close the windows rather loudly. This would also cause the rest of the congregation to leave immediately.
Reportedly, one bishop was banished to an island somewhere for the rest of his life, which turned out to be rather long.

This seemed to be the main court area. Unfortunately most of the pictures of it failed to come out at all, so this is all I have.
Ludwigsburg castle also has a small theater, which is still used to this day. It's the oldest preserved theater in Europe, and all of the original equipment (from 1758) still works. We're down on the main floor of the theater, looking at the stage, with 5 rows of 'columns' visible.
When I was closer to the front, I could see that the columns were actually flat, and had the various curtains and backdrops hanging between them. From the main area, the perspective was very well done. Above are 3 levels of balcony seats.
except of course in the middle, which was the king's seat.
A cool thing I didn't get a picture of was the central chandelier in the theater. It appeared to be able to be completely removed through a large hole in the ceiling during performances (So as not to block the balcony view)

Another typical feature are murals on the ceilings. The last one of these is particularly interesting.

This room was under renovation during my visit, so I couldn't go to the middle of the floor where this perspective trick is most powerful.
Everything that couldn't be removed from the room was covered, but I think I saw a set of red steps up to a short platform that would indicate this as another court area. This was very different than the usual ceiling murals you'd see in the other rooms.

Next post: a tower from fairy tales.

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