Czech Republic

Castle Kynžvart

The EHL Site

Kynžvart Chateau is located in the Czech border at the foot of the Slavkov Forest, in a protected area, famous for its natural richness and spas. The chateau is by its area and its collections one of the most significant monuments protected by the Czech state. The chateau is surrounded by a historical park with an area of 293 hectares.

For both the representation purposes and personal interests of the most distinguished owner of the chateau – the Austrian Chancellor, Prince Klemens von Metternich (1773–1859), the chateau was rebuilt and filled with large collections; diplomatic gifts from around the world as well as a library of European importance. The chateau collections have remained undivided until today and are completely accessible to wide public. The guided tours and associated events thus represent the time, the lifestyle and attitudes, the European political ideas and the work of the Chancellor, who derived his roots from Metter, the ministerial of the Frankish kings Merovech and Pepin. The family centuries-long tradition of service and the loyalty to the emperor thus brought about a close relationship with the Habsburgs.

European dimension

Castle Kynžvart like “a place of diplomatic meetings” reminds time of European state system after the end of Napoleonic wars in 1815 until the end of 1850s.

With the aim to preserve European peace, the Austrian Chancellor Clement Metternich met with a number of prominent personalities at the Kynžvart Chateau, especially foreign and Austrian diplomats, almost every year since the second half of the 1820s. The themes of the meeting were always discussions regarding the contemporary situation in Europe and in the Middle East, with the aim to maintain stability and settle the problems that had arisen.

Here was drafted in 1840 the project of the Peace-Keeping European League very similar to the articles establishing the 1949 NATO Treaty.

The European significance of the site lies in its role as a place where joint solutions to European problems were sought from Metternich’s initiative. The European Family of States and Nations therefore continued to set up the post-Napoleonic system of first international relations respecting international law. The Chancellor saw his ideal Europe as a multicultural and multilingual federal arrangement of nations pursuing common benefits.

The organization

Kynžvart Chateau is one of the historical objects administered by the National Heritage Institute (NHI) of Czech Republic. In the castle we provide a regular guided tours. Our mission is to be open for every one who wants to know more. In the castle is located a big collections of artworks, library, and archival materials. We enable to study and research. On top of that we realize events, concerts, presentations and educations. We often hold the events with our local partners. Location and topic of the castle is interesting not only for both Czechs and Germans.