Beauties of our country series: Cervena Lhota stamp by Czech Republic

Beauties of our country series: Cervena Lhota stamp by Czech Republic

The new stamp by Ceska posta from the series "Beauties of our country" is dedicated to Cervena Lhota.

Cervena Lhota is a Renaissance water chateau in the eastern part of South Bohemia.

The chateau is located on a rock, which became an island in the chateau pond after the damming of the valley and the increase in the water level. The chateau consists of an enclosed four-wing layout around a square courtyard. Above the entrance, there is a tower. An access road leads to the chateau across a stone bridge.

The stronghold was owned by the Lhotec family of Zasmuky from the second half of the 14th century. However, the first written mention dates from as late as 1465: the Land Registry shows the division of the inherited property between Vaclav and Petr of Zasmuky. In the following years Lhota changed its owner to Divis Boubinsky of Ujezd, from whom Jan Kaba of Rybnany bought it in 1530 and had the old Gothic fortress converted into a more comfortable Renaissance chateau, known afterwards as Nova Lhota. He sold the chateau in 1597 to Vilem Rut of Dírna, who reconstructed it in late Renaissance style and painted its façade red. This is the reason for its current name, Cervena, or "Red" Lhota.

The Rut family of Dirna acquired the chateau at the end of the 16th century. However, as they were Utraquists the property was confiscated from them after the Battle of White Mountain in 1620, although they had not participated in the uprising of Bohemian noblemen. At the time of the Thirty Years' War, it was owned by the Italian cavalry captain Antonio Bruccio. After his death the chateau was bought by Vilem Slavata of Chlum and Kosumberk in 1641. After this year, and in the years 1658–1678 a reconstruction in Baroque style took place at the chateau which turned the aristocratic residence into a summer palace, where the Slavata family would commute from nearby Jindrichuv Hradec.

After the extinction of the male line of the Slavata family in 1693, the niece of the last Slavata, Maria Theresa who married into the Windischgratz family, inherited Cervená Lhota. From the mid-18th century it changed owners again several times. Under Ignatius Stillfried, a composer and the co-founder of the German opera Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf stayed at the chateau between 1796–1799. From 1835, the chateau was owned successively by members of four generations of the royal family Schonburg-Hartenstein – German imperial princes. The family had lived in the chateau until 1945, when it was confiscated. The last owners had the chateau tower and gables reconstructed in neo-Gothic style. Between 1903–1913 these modifications were removed under Johann Schonburg-Hartenstein and replaced with a historically faithful neo-Renaissance construction by the architect Humbert Walcher of Moltheim, giving the chateau its present form.


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