Myths and Legends

Germany has a rich history of myth, legends and sagas, linked to the thousands of castles that litter the land. Each has its own story and local folklore that has been passed on from generation to generation. 

Castle Alt Windeck

The Magic Chickens of Castle Alt-Windeck

Close to the town of Bühl the ruins of castle Alt-Windeck can be seen and its towers offer a spectacular view of the area, all the way to close by Strasburg and its minster. The castle is linked with a peculiar story that plays in the 14th century and features magic chickens and and a pair of brave children. 

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Imperial Palace Ingelheim

The Legend of Hildegard, Charlemagne’s wife

This is a legend about Charlemagne and his half-brother Taland, who falls in love with Hildegard, Charlemagne’s wife. When the emperor Charlemagne returned from Spain, he had to leave immediately to fight the Saxons, who had invaded his kingdom and burned churches and villages. He ordered Taland, his half-brother, to stay at the imperial palace at Ingelheim to protect the empress, Hildegard.

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Alte Kurfürstliche Burg, Boppard

The Legend of the Knight of Boppard

Around the time of the crusades, it is said that a large group of knights left Boppard and the surrounding castles to travel to the holy city. Konrad Beier of Boppard, however, was tasked to stay behind and defend the city if necessary. Initially, the enjoyed the responsibility and looked after the citizens of the region as well as marrying Maria, a beautiful lady who was alone in her castle, just like him.

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The Legend of the Geiselstein

The Geiselstein is a strange rock formation on the Vogelsberg in the state of Hesse that was formed during the regions volcanic past. As with many such formations there is a famous story, this one suggesting that part of it looks like the face of a local Baron.

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Binger Mäuseturm

The Legend of the Binger Mäuseturm

The Binger Mäuseturm is situated on Mäuseturmisland in the Rhine River. It was built in the early 14th century and mostly served as a custom station and single tower. The tower is most famous for the legend how it was named, which inspired authors such as Clemens Brentano, Victor Hugo and Ferdinand Freiligrath.

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Castle Rheinstein

The Lovers of Castle Rheinstein

This legend dates back to the 13th century, when Castle Rheinstein was called Castle Vogtsberg, a name that was dropped later. It tells the story of Gerda, the daughter of the local lord Sifrid. Sifrid had been a well-known knight in his youth, but had finally settled down to a more peaceful life, having married…

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Schloss Arenfels south

Arenfels Castle – The Legend of the Crusader

This is the story of the crusader knight Dieter, how he fell in love with the daughter of Arenfels and how the castle was destroyed and rebuild. The lord of Castle Arenfels had two lovely daughters, so lovely that their beauty was well known throughout the region. On day, a knight called Dieter of Castle…

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Castle Rolandseck

Castle Rolandseck – The Legend of Roland the Knight

This is the legend of how the Caste Rolandseck was build by Roland, the nephew of Charlemagne. He had married Hildegund, the daughter of the Lords of Castle Drachenfels and the two lived happily together until Roland was called to arms against the Moors. Heavy-hearted, the lovers parted and Hildegund waited patiently for the return…

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The Drachenfels – The Legend of the Dragon

Once upon a time there was a dragon who lived on a mountain overlooking the Rhine river in the Siebengebirge region called the Drachenfels. The local pagans regularly sacrificed prisoners and enemies to avoid calamity and in turn, the dragon did not burn their villages and farm.  One day, two chieftains met in combat. They…

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Auf dem Geisenberg – The Highwayman

Once upon a time, there stood a stronghold in the mountains around Geisenberg in the Siebengebirge region, clsoe to Bad Honnef, which served as headquarters of notorious highwaymen. The men plundered the local villages and stole their belongings and cattle only to sell it further afield where they were unknown. The leader of the group,…

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Castle Berge – The innocent Knight

Lord von Berge, as was demanded by custom, held court to settle disagreements and accusations. One of his knights, Engelbrecht von Boltenberg, had accused another, Gerlach von von Steinbach of murder. Von Steinbach was accused of ambushing the knight called Gerlach von Schwerven and killing him and his party. Outraged, von Steinback called him a…

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Castle Questenberg – A Cauldron of Gold

This is the legend of of the destruction of the castle and a generous ghost. As the 30 Years’ War raged, the people of the Harz region feared the worst and took everything they valued to Castle Questenberg where they hoped it would be safe. To hide their treasure they filled a large cauldron which…

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Castle Questenberg – The missing Daughter

This legend tells the story of the daughter of the knight Knut of Questenberg, how she was lost and eventually found. About an hour from Roßlar in the mountains of the Harz region stood an old castle overlooking the village of Finsterberg, where during the 13th century the knight Knut resided. Knut had a beautiful…

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