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One of Württemberg's late medieval palaces

Urach Residential Palace

Exterior of Urach Palace and auxiliary buildings. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, credit unknown
Striking halls in the residential palace

The structure

The magnificent halls of the former Urach Residential Palace bear witness to the a time when the Dukes of Württemberg ruled their land. Each palace room displays examples of the special preferences of the various lords of the palace.

The gate tower at Urach Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Janna Almeida

Gate tower with massive walls.

Half-timber structure on a stone floor

Count Eberhard III the Mild had the palace built in the late 14th century and it was completed in 1400. He used the old palace in Stuttgart for inspiration. Two floors of living quarters are located above the ground floor and house the palace's two grand halls. The lower floor boasts the Hall of Palms and was built of stone, the upper half-timber floor houses the Golden Hall. Access to the upper floors was previously located outside, along the northwest courtyard facade. The rectangular structure was covered by a hipped roof.

View of the hall and ribbed vault, Urach Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Augustin

The Knights’ Hall: a wide, vaulted space.

Gothic hall as a dining hall

The ground floor of the residential palace is completely taken up by the heatable Knights’ Hall. Originally, it was a simple flat slab hall that served court servants as a common room and was also used by all palace inhabitants as a dining hall. The window bays still have stone benches, in front of which wooden tables were placed. Duke Eberhard the Bearded had the Knights’ Hall converted to a rib-vaulted, four-aisled hall in 1474, on the occasion of his wedding to Barbara Gonzaga.

Expanding the palace

The additions that characterize the residential palace exterior today were added under Duke Ulrich. The round tower and two-story half-timber addition to the southwest were added in 1534 and 1535. Additions by Duke Carl Eugen have also left obvious traces. The White Hall, built between 1765 and 1770 and decorated with filigreed stucco, heralded the cheerful attitude towards life found in the Rococo period.

View of the White Hall, Urach Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Tom Philippi

Delicate Rococo in the late medieval residence.

Uncovered mural in Urach Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Janna Almeida

Uncovered examples of the past.

20th-century changes

In the 1960s, Urach Palace underwent extensive renovations to stabilize its precarious structural integrity. During these renovations, the palace was almost entirely gutted and rebuilt. Over the course of these renovations, Duke Carl Eugen's apartment on the second floor was removed, along with the overlying rooms. The Hall of Palms was uncovered again and Count Eberhard V's proof of ancestry was rediscovered. The half-timber oriel was torn down and the stairs were moved inside; later, an elevator was added.

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