Cochem Reborn

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What I did
Astounding Castle, coolest village

Flag of Germany  , Rhineland-Palatinate,
Tuesday, September 25, 2012

We followed that slow day in the Netherlands with a fascinating trip to Cochem' Germany, where we discovered a most interesting village, in the beautiful Moselle Valley.  The Cochem Castle, like other medieval castles, was built on a high hill for the purpose of defense.  On 3 sides, the enemy had to climb the steep slope and the surrounding wall and on the fourth side there were four different gates to get through.  The castle dates back to 1000 AD, when it was buult by the Franconian Palatine counts.  In 1151, the German emporor seized the castle and then in 1294 another German king pawned the castle (imagine PAWNING a castle!).  Although the castle may have seemed impregnable, apparently it wasn't cause in 1689 it was totally destroyed by soldiers under King Louis XIV of France.  In ruins for 200 years it eventually was reconstructed according to old plans from a rich merchant from Berlin.  In 1942 the descendants  of the rich merchant were forced to sell it to the Reich.  Since 1978 it has belonged to the town of Cochem.  
In the dining hall (I noticed the table seated 24),  the wood was decorated with "poker-work", which means the patterns are burnt in and then painted.  The buffet was full of Delft chinaware.  The idea of symetry was very important and they installed a "fake door" to maintain the look.  You will see a pic of this weird horn on the centre of the table, which was basically a wine holder.  The Gothic room was named after its Gothic arches and all the furniture was originals from 17th and 18th century and mostly decorated with inlaid woodwork.  
The Hunter's Room had hunting trophies and spears and this where you see the huge wild boar's head.  The large tankards on the table each held a gallon and a half of wine, the amount each monk was allowed to drink per day.  I neglected to get a pic of the door, where there was a key guide so a drunk hunter could guide his key into the lock.
The Knight's Hall is the largest room in the castle, which has an enormous fireplace, and unfortunately my pic didn't turn out!
Weapons Room has suits of armour...the armour, together with the war horse was worth about 45 cows.  There is a pic of Dave standing next to a big knight's armour, which belonged to a man who lived in Austria and was more than 7' tall!
The balcony is situated at 100 meters above the Moselle River, which for centuries was the only link between France and Germany.
I think they built it up there to capture the view, which is stunnng.  So far I think this is the most impressive castle we've seen!
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Pam on

This is indeed a beautiful place. The view from the castle down to the river is breathtaking.

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