Aranyosmeggyes (Medieșu Aurit) is in Transylvania, in Romania. The Lónyai family lived in this castle: see the black-and-white pictures of 1912.
The place was first mentioned as Villa Megyes in a document of the Hungarian King István V. in 1271. At that time, it was an important place in Transylvania as far as the roads were concerned. we can find the early castle in the property of András, son of Jákó of the Kaplon Clan in 1278. Lord András happened to attack his king, László IV, hitting towards the head of the king with his mace, out of sudden anger. As a punishment, the king deprived him of his property and gifted the Castle of Megyes to Móricz, the son of voivode Móricz of Transylvania.
The sons of the Móricz clan became the heirs of the castle and the surrounding land. The most notable person of this family was Meggyesi Simon, the Bán (Duke) of Dalmatia. We know that Meggyesi Simon and János were the owners of the castle in 1429. However, the place was in the hand of Lord Móriczhidai Móricz in 1442. The castle was taken over from the Meggyesi family by the Báthory family (Báthory andrás and István) by force, in 1493. As the property was the subject of a court case, the building was not well-maintained until 1520. It remained in the Báthory family’s hands until 1626, then Lónyai Zsigmond inherited it in 1630. (Please, note that I’m intentionally using the Eastern name order for Hungarians so the family names come first…)
Lord Lónyai was the one who reinforced it in the Renaissance style. It went to Lady Lónyai Anna in 1643. She instigated the noble lords in the neighborhood in 1669 to resist the pillaging German mercenaries of Szatmár castle. After killing the mercenaries, she was sued and charged with treason. The Habsburgs had the tower of the castle destroyed and had the castle exploded in 1670. The rest of it was burned down in 1707. Count Teleki Samuel had it restored in the 20th century and it was the best example of the Transylvanian Renaissance. The Nazis blew it up in WWII and since nothing has happened to save it.
Please, look at the pictures of this magnificent building, and weep. (Pictures will be coming soon.)
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