Virgin Tower at Devín Castle 50 Halierov Slovak Republic Authentic Coin Money for Jewelry and Craft Making
Virgin Tower at Devín Castle 50 Halierov Slovak Republic Authentic Coin Charm for Jewelry and Craft Making
Obverse: Slovak shield, year of mintage and the mintmark
Lettering: SLOVENSKÁ REPUBLIKA
Translation: Slovak Republic
Reverse: Virgin Tower or Maiden Tower of Devín Castle: Separated from the main castle, Virgin Tower balances perilously on a lone rock and has spawned countless legends concerning imprisoned lovelorn daughters leaping to their deaths.
Lettering: 50 h
Translation: 50 halierov
Period Republic (1993-date)
Type Standard circulation coin
Value 50 Halierov (0.50 SKK)
Currency Koruna (1993-2008)
Composition Copper plated steel
Weight 2.8 g
Diameter 18.75 mm
Thickness 1.60 mm
Orientation Medal alignment ↑↑
Demonetized 31 December 2008
Number N# 2489
References KM# 35, Schön# 14
THE LEGEND OF THE VIRGIN TOWER
It is said that Knight Mikuláš, the monarch of Devín castle went as far as Carinthia to find a bride. He fell in love with the virgin Margaret the daughter of a rich family. Her father politely refused him the hand of his daughter, but the knight kidnapped Margaret. The virgin Margaret didn't resist much, because she liked Mikuláš. Upon arrival, she also liked his beautiful castle.
Later, Margaret's uncle Rafael, the Abbot of Isenburg, came to the castle in order to set her free. His soldiers caught Margaret and they brouht her home to Carinthia. Mikuláš ran after them and won his bride back after a short fight. Back to the castle, they started to prepare the wedding.
But just after the ceremony, the Abbot Rafael cheated the guards and assaulted the castle. But The Carinthians outnumbered the warriors defending Devín Castle and compelled Mikuláš to retreat to the slim tower above the confluence of the Danube and Morava, where he was killed.
His young bride jumped into the Danube out of sorrow. The muddy water of the river buried the virgin Margaret on her wedding day and since then the tower on the rock has been called the Virgin Tower.
Devín Castle (Slovak: hrad Devín [ˈɦɾad ˈɟɛʋiːn] or Devínsky hrad [ˈɟɛʋiːnski ˈɦɾat], Hungarian: Dévényi vár, German: Burg Theben) is a castle in Devín, which is a borough of Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia.
The site has been settled since the Neolithic Age and fortified since the Bronze and Iron Age and later by Celts and Romans.
The cliff (elevation 212 meters) is an ideal place for a fort due to its position at the confluence of the Danube and Morava rivers. The fort watches over an important trade route along the Danube as well as one branch of the Amber Road.
The castle stands just inside Slovak territory on the frontier between Slovakia and Austria. The border runs from west to east along the Morava River and subsequently the Danube. Prior to 1989, the Iron Curtain between the Eastern Bloc and the West ran just in front of the castle. Although the castle was open to the public, the area surrounding it constituted a restricted military zone, and was heavily fortified with watchtowers and barbed wire. After the Velvet Revolution the area was demilitarised.
The most photographed part of the castle is the tiny watchtower, known as the Maiden Tower. Separated from the main castle, it balances perilously on a lone rock and has spawned countless legends concerning imprisoned lovelorn daughters leaping to their deaths.
Inside the castle is a sprawling landscape of walls, staircases, open courtyards and gardens in various states of disrepair. A restoration project is ongoing since the end of World War II.
The name of the castle is probably derived from the old Indo-European/Proto-Slavic stem deiv- with apophony doiv- related to light and visual perception. Devín, Divín, Devinka, Divino, Dzivín and similar Slavic names can be interpreted as watchtowers or observation points. The same root related to vision can be found also in the word div (evil spirit) thus meaning "the place of evil spirits". The Annales Fuldenses explained the name from the Slavic word deva—a girl ("Dowina, id est puella"). In this case, "devin grad" means "castle of the girl" (according to a linguist Šimon Ondruš, this etymology is less likely).
Devín castle is one of the oldest castles in Slovakia. The castle was likely first mentioned in written sources in 864, when Louis the German besieged Prince Rastislav in one of the frequent wars between the Franks and Great Moravia respectively in the "castle of Dowina". On the other hand, the identification of Dowina with Devín Castle has been under debate based on alleged linguistic arguments and the absence of convincing archaeologic evidence.
During the Great Moravian period, Devín was the center of a larger agglomeration. Its defensive role was enstrengthen by smaller hill forts on Devínska Kobyla (Na pieskach, Nad lomom). A pre-romanesque church was built on the castle approximately between 850 and 863/870. Its rare style is closest to churches from the Dalmatia and Noricum, from the areas with a persisting tradition of late antique and Byzantine architecture. The interior of the church was decorated with frescoes painted by colors originated (according to chemical analysis) in northern Italy. Two styluses discovered by later research can indicate administrative or education work of the local priests. Along with other artifacts, six graves dated to the Great Moravian era were found near the church and are attributed to members of a retinue of the local ruler and their family members.
In the 13th century, a stone castle was built to protect the western frontier of the Hungarian Kingdom whose existence was documented in 1271 and a reference to a castelanus de Devin appeared in 1326. Between 1301 and 1323, the castle (together with Bratislava/Pressburg County) was held by the Dukes of Austria who granted it to Otto von Tellesbrunn. In 1323, the dukes transferred Pozsony County back to King Charles I of Hungary and Devín Castle became the possession of the heads (ispáns) of the county. In 1385, the castle was occupied by Margrave Jobst of Moravia who held it until 1390 when King Sigismund of Hungary redeemed it and gave it to duke Stibor of Stiboricz. After that, the king mortgaged Devín Castle to an Austrian knight, Lessel Hering who transferred the castle to Nicholas II Garay (the Palatine of the Kingdom) in 1414. Around 1444, King Frederick IV of Germany occupied the castle but he granted it to Ladislaus Garai already in 1450.
The palace was added in the 15th century. The fortifications were reinforced during the wars against the Ottoman Empire. The Castle was never taken, but after the Hungarian Kingdom joined the Habsburg Monarchy and the Ottomans were finally defeated, it ceased to be an important border fortress and was no longer used by the military. Stephen Báthory got the castle by the king as a donation. But according to Stephen Báthory was Keglević the owner of the castle. Keglević pawned the castle for 40,000 guilders to the Palocsai family and spent the money. In 1609, Matthias II confirmed that Keglević still was the owner of the castle, but Keglević did not have the money to take the castle out of pledge from the Palocsai family. Nearly 100 years later in 1635 Palatine Pál Pálffy took the castle out of pledge from the Palocsai family. The last owners of the Devín Castle were the Counts of the Pálffy family. Only in 1809, after the Siege of Pressburg, the castle was (which may have still been considered a threat) destroyed by the retreating forces of Napoleon I of France. Napoleon and Leopold Pálffy negotiated then and they both agreed that Vienna is supplied with products by Pálffy.
Since the 19th century as its history inspired several Romantic poets, followers of Ľudovít Štúr, Devín has become an important national symbol for the Slovaks. It featured both on the reverse of the former 500 Czechoslovak koruna banknote and the 50 Halierov coin of the Slovak currency.
The Hungarians regarded it as the western gateway of the Kingdom of Hungary. The Hungarian poet Endre Ady used it as a symbol of modernism and Westernization in his poem I am the Son of Gog and Magog:
By Verecke's ancient route I came,
In my ear ancient Magyar songs still blaze,
Am I free to break through at Dévény,
With modern songs fit for modern days?
— Endre Ady: I am the Son of Gog and Magog
Some parts of the castle have been reconstructed in the 20th century and the castle hosts an interesting museum. Archaeological works at the site have revealed the remains of a Roman tower dating from the 1st century AD and evidence of a prehistoric settlement.
Came quickly and was in excellent condition.