Selected Passages from Hungarian-Ottoman Wars


Kükülővár (Cetatea de Baltă, Kokelburg, Cuculiense Castrum, Kümelburg) is a Hungarian settlement in Transylvania, Romania. It can be found on the bank of the River Küküllő. The building is a fine example of Hungarian Renaissance architecture from the age of Transylvanian Principality.

The historical Nagy Küküllő County (green)

Its name was first mentioned in 1177. Its castle, built by King Saint László, had been the center of the County. The Mongols destroyed it in 1241. Allegedly, the Tatars killed there 30,000 people who had tried to get shelter there. The next castle was built in the 13th century, its ground walls are still visible. It was first mentioned in 1319 as a royal fort.

King Matthias Corvinus gifted it to Stefan, the Voivode of Moldova, in 1480. You can read more about King Matthias Corvinus here:

Photo: Alina Musat

The present castle was built from the stones of the second fort in the 16th century in the Transylvanian Renaissance style but it was rebuilt between 1570 and 1580. Prince Apafi I used to stay in its castle a lot. The last Moldavian owner of the castle was Voivode Petru Rares but King Szapolyai took away the fort from him in 1538 because the Voivode had taken Habsburg Ferdinand’s side. King Szapolyai gave the castle to his wife, Queen Isabella. According to the decision of the Transylvanian Diet, the castle was pulled down in 1565.

Photo: Andrei kokelburg

It was Bethlen István of Iktár, younger brother of Prince Bethlen Gábor who rebuilt it in 1622. Later the place remained in the hand of the princes until the last Transylvanian prince ceded it to the Habsburgs. The Bethlen family got it from the Habsburg monarch only in 1764. The last owner from the Bethlen family was Bethlen Márk who lost the castle in a card game so the next owner became Count Haller Jenő in 1884.

Photo: Zsolt Deak

As far as I know, the castle is closed and tourists can’t enter; in 2008 the security guard didn’t dare to let them in despite offering him a bribe. Allegedly, now the castle is used for storing champagne. The place has a Reformed church, built in the 11-12th century and rebuilt in 1417. There are medieval frescoes inside and a special portrayal of a Mongol from the 13th century can be seen. You can also see a small Catholic chapel.

Source (partly):

The Gothic church in the village (Photo: Andrei Kokelburg)

The castle was seriously damaged in 1944. Later, it was used for agricultural purposes and for producing champagne. Now, allegedly it is owned by the Champagne factory of Jidve; they promised to have it renovated.

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Photo: Savuleasca

 Here are a few more pictures of Küküllővár: