Blick auf den Felsen von Burgstein aus der Luft.


Holzelfingen (The municipality of Lichtenstein), The county of Reutlingen

The Burgstein is a protruding, strikingly free-standing rock on the edge of the plateau near Holzelfingen, which, according to tradition, once supported a castle belonging to the Lords of Greifenstein.

Whether a medieval castle ever stood on the Burgstein near Holzelfingen has long been disputed by researchers. However, there are striking indications. For example, the distinctive field names "Burgholz" and "Burgholzäcker" can be found there. Moreover, both the names "Burgholz" and "Burgstein" are already mentioned in the 1454 inventory book. The Swabian historian Martin Crusius also refers to such a castle on the Burgstein, when he talks about the village of Holzelfingen in 1596. According to Crusius, the castle belonged to the Greifenstein family. The existing traces of the terrain are also striking, which - although not very distinct - suggest that the area was artificially remodeled.

Local nobility was first documented in the nearby village of Holzelfingen in the early 13th century. These lords of Holzelfingen, who can be traced back to the 14th century, were probably knightly servants of the Greifenstein family. Whether there could have been a connection between this family and a potential castle complex on the Burgstein remains questionable.

Regarding long-disputed castle complex itself, archaeological excavations have recently revealed clear evidence of the existence. Remains of heavily broken foundation masonry and high concentrations of mortar fragments were uncovered in several places. The severe damage or later removal of the masonry thus appears to be compatible with the historical record. The pottery found provides evidence for the use of the site during the first half of the 12th century, i.e. the early phase of the Greifenstein dominion. There is also evidence of settlement activity during the 11th century. Of outstanding importance was the discovery of several game pieces made from red deer antlers, which shed light on the chivalric and courtly culture of the High Middle Ages.

72805 Holzelfingen
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