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The Ducal Tower in Siedlęcin

This inconspicuous place will spark the imagination of more than just medieval fans.

In a small village surrounded by hills, an austere stone tower dating back to the 14th century hangs above the lazily meandering Bóbr River. In it you will find the world’s only medieval frescoes preserved in situ, with images of Sir Lancelot and Guinevere – characters in the scandalous love story from the legends of King Arthur.

Very few paintings from this period deal with subjects other than the Bible and the lives of saints, so the story immortalized in the subtle pastel frescoes in Siedlęcin is even more intriguing!

The unusual residential tower stood at the river crossing. It served the princes of nearby Jawor as a defensive site and a roadside residence. The local rulers descended from a lateral branch of the Piast dynasty that ruled Poland until the 14th century, which became Germanized over time. In later years the tower was used as a granary, and today it is gradually being restored through the efforts of local history enthusiasts. In addition to the frescoes with Lancelot, inside you can see the original wooden ceilings from 700 years ago and a masterpiece of late medieval carpentry – a massive roof truss from the 16th century, built without using a single nail. Drawing its design would be difficult even with the help of modern programs!

The tower is part of the Książęce Rezydencje Doliny Bobru

Fotos: Karol Barsolis

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The Ducal Tower in Siedlęcin