Gýmeš

The ruins of the originally gothic castle on the quartz hill of the Tríbeč mountain above the village of Jelenec, near the town of Nitra

castle ruin / 505 m



hore

Jelenec, Nitra county

N48° 24' 41.50",  E18° 13' 20.89"


Gymes, Ghymes, Ghimus, Gymus, Jelenec, Gímes

How to get there - Gýmeš

Route 1: In Kostoľany pod Tríbečom we follow the road no. 1610 along the edge of the village, until we come along a narrow path to a smaller parking lot, where there is also a shelter with seating. A yellow hiking trail starts a short distance away. The ascent is quite challenging, but it is not unmanageable, to the crossroads Sedlo pod Gýmešom it takes about 35-40 minutes. From the crossroads it is necessary to continue along the green route, under the castle it is then only about 10 minutes.

time 50 min profile +252m/-11m
difficulty Parking parking


Route 2: Access from the mentioned car park in Kostoľany via the red route (Ponitrianska magistrála), which feeds into the green route in the direction of the castle at the crossroads pod Gaštanicou.

time 1:10 h profile +247m/0m
difficulty Parking parking


Route 3: An alternative is the access from the recreation area Remitáž in Jelenec, from where we will follow the asphalt road together with the red, blue and yellow route to the place where the yellow sign turns right. We follow its course and climb the forest path. From the crossroads pod Studeným hradom we can go from the route to the viewpoint Studený hrad, then back along the yellow road and continue to the above-mentioned crossroads Sedlo pod Gýmešom, from where we get to the castle along the green route.

time 1:10 h profile +286m/0m
difficulty Parking parking


Route 4: From the Remitáž area in Jelenec, it is also possible to use the red route (Ponitrianska magistrála), leading to the Pod gaštanicou crossroads and from there following the green route to the castle.

time 1:30 h profile +283m/0m
difficulty Parking parking

Nearest castles (direct line):
Horné Lefantovce - 5.6 km, Oponický hrad - 6.4 km, Oponice veľký kaštieľ - 8 km, Čierny hrad - 8.6 km, Oponice malý kaštieľ - 8.7 km, Zoborský kláštor - 12.2 km, Topoľčianky - 14.1 km, Nitriansky hrad - 14.4 km, Horné Obdokovce - 15.8 km, Hrušov - 16.8 km, Skýcov - 17.8 km, Nové Sady - 17.8 km, Klátova Nová Ves - 18.1 km, Bošany - 18.9 km, Hajná Nová Ves - 19.6 km

Interior and exterior

The oldest core of the castle consisted of an approximately triangular courtyard defined on two sides by walls. Over the centuries, other residential and farm buildings were added to the walls. A tower palace was also built, which was transformed into a castle church of St. Ignatius. Another tower palace was built at the end of the Middle Ages from the outside of the inner castle. Its remains are located on the western corner of the southern barrier.

Openings of windows and entrances have kept stone frames in several places. The architecture of the chapel is clearly readable by dividing the walls with double pilasters and profiled cornices that once carried the vault of space.



Gýmeš - ground plan

Ground plan - Gýmeš


Legend to the ground plan:
1 - prismatic residential tower, 2 - southwestern palace, 3 - eastern palace, 4 - half-cylinder residential tower, 5 - original entrance to the upper castle in the 13th century, 6 - castle palace of Tomáš county, 7 - farm buildings, 8 - tower palace , 9 - Gothic gate, 10 - southeastern palace, 11 - Church of St. Ignatius, 12 - Chapel of St. Jána, 13 - passable fence with gate bastion, 14 - cannon bastion, 15 - bastion, 16 - entrance to the castle

Photogallery

2018

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Unless stated differently, the photographs are subject to the copyright of hrady-zamky.sk

Historical photographs

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  • Gýmeš-história

If the source is not mentioned, the photos come from deltiologists and users who sent or lent them to us, as well as from freely available sources, social networks and archives.

Photos of visitors

  • Gýmeš-2020 - Milan Uhrin
  • Gýmeš-2020 - Milan Uhrin
  • Gýmeš-2020 - Milan Uhrin
  • Gýmeš-2020 - Ika
  • Gýmeš-2019 - Poslal: Vladimír Kubáč (CZE)
  • Gýmeš-2019 - Poslal: Vladimír Kubáč (CZE)
  • Gýmeš-2019 - Poslal: Vladimír Kubáč (CZE)
  • Gýmeš-2021 - Riso
  • Gýmeš-2021 - Riso

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History and personalities

Gýmeš Castle was probably built by Ondrej from the Hont-Pázmány family. Although the castle was first mentioned in 1253, the family tradition dates back to its foundation as early as 1250. The oldest core of the castle was delimited by a castle wall of a late Romanesque fortification, which enclosed a triangular courtyard. On the south side, there was a prismatic tower on the ridge with a residential and defensive function. At the end of the 13th century, they added another tower. They then built palaces in the common fortifications between the towers. The castle proved its resilience in 1271 and 1273, when it resisted the onslaught of the Czech King Přemysl Otakar II troops. In 1295, Ondrej's sons divided the property.

Gýmeš Castle was forcibly occupied in 1302 by Matúš Čák Trenčiansky. His illegal possession was replaced by the stewardship of the royal castellans under the leadership of King Karol Róbert in 1312. In 1356, the castle was acquired by the queen Mary from the king Louis the Great. At the request of the queen, Baláž Forgách, who was the first to use the surname Forgách, was killed. In 1400, King Sigismund decided that the castle would be owned by his sons Peter and Mikuláš Forgách. The greed of the castle lords of Gýmeš caused a dispute with the church.

At the beginning of the modern age, the Turks tried to conquer the castle several times. They did not succeed until 1576. In 1610 there was a peasant uprising, due to the high fees that the Forgách family collected. The uprising was brutally suppressed by the owners of Gýmeš. The castle was already considerably destroyed at this time. In 1613, the castle was repaired by Sigismund Forgách. In 1618, when Sigismund was elected palatine, he fought against Prince Gabriel Bethlen of Transylvania. He came to avenge him with a large army, plundered his property and set the castle on fire. In 1619, the palatine Forgách asked Tekovská County to help with repairing Gýmeš Castle. He repaired, furnished and decorated the castle. In 1663 the castle was conquered by the Turks again.

During the restoration of the castle, which was destroyed by the Turks after the fall of Nové Zámky in the autumn of 1663, they built a new fortification with cannon bastions on the southern, most endangered side. Nevertheless, in 1671, the Turks briefly occupied Gýmeš again and damaged it severely. Although the Turks were pushed to the southern seats, the fighting for the castle did not end. The Forgách family mostly maintained loyalty to the monarch, but the exception was Šimon Forgách, who became commander of the army of Francis II. Rákóczi. In 1709, the emperor confiscated all his family property for treason. The castle was then acquired by Pavol Forgách from another branch of the family and in 1718 he also received a deed of gift.

Gýmeš was one of the few castles where construction work continued in the 18th century. The transformation of the Gothic palace into the ancestral crypt of the Forgách family with a chapel dates back to this period. It was not until the middle of the 19th century that the manor left the castle definitively and began to disintegrate. The Forgách family moved to a newly built manor house in the village below the castle. In 1833, Karol Forgách devastated the castle by having the roof dismantled and the truss construction used to build a sugar factory in Jelenec. From 1840 the castle began to be completely abandoned and there was no one to repair it.

In 1950, the ruin became a state property. Coincidentally, exactly 700 years have passed since the foundation of the castle, when the original owners lost it again. The state entrusted the castle under the administration of the State Forests, which, of course, due to their focus and limited possibilities, could not ensure the rescue of the castle ruins.

One of the few efforts to clean the castle grounds from greenery was the activity of the EkoGýmeš club. In 1985-1987, its members cleared and made some parts of the ruin accessible. However, the effectiveness of these works was only temporary due to the absence of further maintenance. Today, the Castrum Ghymes Civic Association, which has been operating at Gýmeš Castle since November 2011, is dedicated to its renewal.

Myths and Legends

Turks under Gýmeš

When the Turks first appeared under the castle, they could not conquer it for weeks. However, the situation of the defenders was worse from day to day. Their advice was reduced, supplies and forces dwindled. The last battle has come. While death was relentlessly mowing the walls of other castle soldiers, the Gýmeš castle lady begged the Mother of God for help in the chapel. Suddenly a terrible storm broke out and the heavens began to rage. Lightning crossed the burning camp of the Turks, and a terrified enemy fled headlessly.

Shovel dance

There was a busy life in the castle all year round. It was most noisy here during hunting and feast festivities associated with a magnificent feast, which were held annually in the castle in honor of the patron saint of the chapel. The guests were allegedly welcomed with the so-called shovel dance. They used this custom on the Gýmeš from 1730. In front of the entrance gate, everyone who came to the castle for the first time got four blows with a wooden shovel, and the visitor then remembered his experience of the welcoming ceremony in a memorial book.

Useful information

The ruin is freely accessible

Used sources and literature: BÁRTA V., BARTA V., NEŠPOR J. Hrady a zámky na Slovensku. Banská Bystrica : AB ART press, KRIŽANOVÁ E.,PUŠKÁROVÁ B. Hrady,zámky a kaštiele na Slovensku. Bratislava : Šport 1990, PLAČEK M., BÓNA M., Encyklopédia slovenských hradov. Bratislava : SLOVART 2007, KOLLÁR D., NEŠPOR J., Kultúrne krásy Slovenska. Hrady - najkrajšie zrúcaniny. Bratislava : DAJAMA 2007 WEB: www.gymes.sk/historia-hradu-gymes, sk.wikipedia.org, Archív hrady-zamky.sk