The Corvin Castle from Hunedoara (Vajdahunyad, Eisenmarkt or Hunnedeng) was called by Kálmán Mikszáth the ”king of the castles”.
A document, the Transylvanian Capitulum, dated from 1411, assured that, by Sigismund of Luxemburg’s order of October 18, 1409, knez Wayk, father of János Hunyadi was put in possession of the estate of Hunyad. Wayk’s family build the castle on the estate. During the governance of János Hunyadi and his wife Erzsébet Szilágyi the fortress was rebuilt to be “suitable” for a knight. In 1618 the Bethlen family of Iktár became the owner of the establishment.
Gábor Bethlen reconstructed the castle, reinforcing the walls with external rampart, and then donated the fortress with the estate to his nephew, István Bethlen. After István Bethlen’s death , in 1632, his widow, Mária Széchy, lived there for a short time. In 1648 the estate and the castle went to the ownership of Mrs. Dávid Zólyomi Katalin Bethlen.
Form 1725 the treasury offices occupied the building. In 1807, after visiting the place, Francis I ordered the renovation of the castle, but in 1818, after a fire caused by a lightning, the works stopped. In 1868, after the promotional campaign of Lajos Arányi, and money donation, the century long restauration initiated, first led by Ferenc Schulcz and later by Imre Steindl.
Today, the Gothic knight castle is a museum.
Zalasd creed can be crossed on the huge wooden bridge, held by four pillars. The entrance into the fortress was through the gatehouse, built in the 1440s on the south side of the yard.
On the west side is the castle wing with the Knight’s Hall on the lower level. On the upper level the so-called Diet Hall was established. The space between the gatehouse and the castle wing was transformed into an “asszonyház” (where the housekeeper lives) by Lord Bethlen.
On the east side of Gate-Tower the Buzogány (Mace)-Tower and the Bastion of János Corvin close the Golden Chamber. With the 1458 expansion (ordered by Matthias Corvinus’ mother, Erzsébet Szilágyi) the Matthias Loggia was added at the exit gate of the new tower. This is considered the earliest manifestation of Transylvanian Renaissance architecture.
The chapel is located on the southwestern side of the Golden Chamber, on the eastern side of the castle, from where the access to the loggia Matthias staircase is possible, leading to the chapel gallery. Next to the chapel is a small yard with the castle's well.
Sunset at Corvin Castle:
The sunset is not the closing of a day, but of a whole century. This is the end of the century of knights’ castles. Among all of them the Corvin Castle is the most amazing castle. It is a true piece of wonder. Such a powerful example, that it inspired Ignác Alpár to build a copy of it as part of the Millennial Exhibition.