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Liw Castle

A day trip to the village fo Liw

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To the Armory Museum at Liw Castle

To the Armory Museum at Liw Castle

Our Ukrainian friends took us to the village of Liw located 30 miles to the north of Siedlce. We wanted to see the River Liwiece, the medieval castle and to attend the Polish-Italian culinary festival. The tiny village of Liw with its 900 residents is within a walking distance from the neighboring city of  Węgrów located to the north of Siedlce, where we are staying. We did not explore the village itself since the castle was our destination. We were glad that our Ukrainian friends in Siedlce took us to the castle one Sunday. 😎

The invitation to the Culinary Festival at Liw Castle

The invitation to the Culinary Festival at Liw Castle

The first written mention of Liw comes from the princely documents dating back to 1304. Liw received city rights in 1421. The settlement used to be surrounded by the backwaters of the Liwiec River, and its name means “swamps”.

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We passed St. Leonard Church was erected in the neo-Gothic style in the years 1905-1907 according to the design of Józef Pius Dziekoński.

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Like many other towns and cities in this area, Liw has many wooden houses and rural farm buildings from the 19th and early 20th century.

Liw Castle, where every stone is history, is a great place to visit!

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The Castle Inn / The wooden bridge to the castle
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Walking along the wooden bridge to the castle / Entering the Main Gate

The Liw Castle located about 50 miles to the north-east of Warsaw used to be a Gothic ducal castle. It was built in the fifteenth century to replace a wooden one. Its dimensions are 33 x 32.5 meters. It served as a guarding stronghold in the town of Liw. The castle is the oldest preserved architectural monument in this area.

The Armory Museum at Liw Castle

The Armory Museum at Liw Castle


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The Armory Museum is a famous attraction here.
The monument to Janusz I the Elder at the entrance to Liw Castle

The monument to Janusz I the Elder at the entrance to Liw Castle


As you enter the castle gate, you can see the statue of Janusz I the Elder (1346-1429), the founder of the castle. He was the Lord of Mazovia, the Prince of Warsaw, Ciechanow, Łomża, Makowsko-Różańsk, Zakroczym, Wiski, Czersk and Wyszogrod.

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Visiting Liw Castle

The castle itself was built on a regular plan similar to a square with a side of 33 meters. It was erected in a swamp area on an artificial island in 1430-1440 and rebuilt in 1512-1555. In 1656, during the so-called Swedish Deluge, and 1703, during the Northern War, the Swedes captured the stronghold.

In 1782, a Baroque manor was erected on the foundations of a Gothic house, and served as a municipality office. It has housed the armory museum since 1963. The Armoury Museum at the Liw Castle has a rich collection of portraits from the 18th century, battle paintings and a famous collection of militaria starting from the 15th century and ending with the 20th century: spears, firearms, bayonets, etc. The entrance fee is PLN 16. The fee also includes the privilege of ascending the stairs inside the castle tower to enjoy the view from the castle balcony overseeing the castle courtyard.
There is a free exhibition inside the main tower of Liw Castle. ✨

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The history exhibition inside the main tower of Liw Castle
A reenactment picture of Liw Castle

A reenactment picture of Liw Castle


This is how the castle and its outbuildings must have looked like 500 years ago...
I liked this collection of castle keys, when we saw the exhibition inside the main tower of Liw Castle

I liked this collection of castle keys, when we saw the exhibition inside the main tower of Liw Castle


During World War II, the Nazis planned to dismantle the walls of the old castle to get bricks for the construction of the Treblinka extermination camp. However, the young local amateur archaeologist Otto Warpechowski (1917-1945) prevented that atrocity by convincing the invaders that the castle supposedly belonged to the Teutonic Order and inhabited by the knights of that order. Well done, Mr.Warpechowski! The archaeologust's diplomacy even led to the start of the reconstruction of the castle during the war (1942-1944). The Nazi invaders managed to renovate and to secure several part of the castle walls, as well as to arrange a souvenir room, which was to be the armory museum. The work was interrupted in 1944 and continued in 1955-1961.

Exploring the courtyard of Liw Castle

Exploring the courtyard of Liw Castle


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Exploring the courtyard of Liw Castle

The museum hosts concerts of classical and popular music, motorbike rallies, and an archaeology festival.
The Brotherhood of Knights of the Mazovian and Podlasie Land organizes the Knights' Tournament for the Princess Anne’s Ring every August.

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You can see two gun barrels mounted on the castle wall. They are gifts from the Navy Museum in Gdynia:

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A fragment of the 17th century warship barrel/A ship barrel from 1798, caliber 86 mm, Liw Castle

The Polish Eagle in Liw Castle courtyard

The Polish Eagle in Liw Castle courtyard

  • a fragment of the barrel from the 17th century. It was taken from a war ship.
  • a ship barrel from 1798, caliber: 86 mm, length: 167 cm.

The bullet weight was 4 pounds (about 1.8 kg). It’s a Swedish gun manufactured by Bofors Royal Armory Factory Bofors that was founded in 1646 in the city of Karlskoga. You can see three crowns above the barrel - the state emblem of Sweden. The manufacturing date - 1798 - and the brand label - VB (Verksamhet Bofors) – can be seen on the barrel.
We read the information board that stands in the castle courtyard.
It is a detailed story of the Liw Castle that used to stand on the state border between Mazovian Duchy and Lithuania.

The state border in the years 1047-1569

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1047- the Prince of Kyiv Rus Yaroslav the Wise received the Podlasie region from the hands of Kazimierz Rudzieciek in exchange for his help in defeating the rebellious Mazovia. The border between Poland and Kyiv Rus was established in Liw.
1180 - Prince Leszek, te son of Bolesław Kędzierzawy, receives the Podlasie region from the Ruthenian Prince Wasyl Jaropłkowicz as the payment for his help in the war with his cousins.
1186-1192 - Prince Kazimierz the Righteous conquered Podlasie.
1235 - Prince Konrad of Mazowia occupies Drohiczyn and established the Knights’ Order of the Dobrzyński Brothers in it, whose aim was to strengthen his control over Podlasie.
1238 - Daniel Romanowicz, the Prince of Halic-Włodzimierz, occupied Drohiczyn.
1253 - Prince Daniel was crowned in Drohiczyn as the King of Kyiv Rus.
The border between the Mazovian Principality and the Halic-Włodzimierz Principality was established in Liw.
1351- the Lithuanians under the leadership of Prince Kiejstut occupy Podlasie with Mielnik and Drohiczyn.
The River Liwiec became the border between the Masovian Duchy and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
1382 - after the death of the Grand Duke of Lithuania Kiejstut, his son-in-law – the Mazovian prince Janusz I the Elder - entered Podlasie and occupied the district as his wife's dowry. Janusz I added the title of the Prince of Rus ( Dux Russiae) to the list of his titles.

A roadside cross at the castle entrance road, Liw

A roadside cross at the castle entrance road, Liw

1383 – the Grand Duke of Lithuania Jagiełło reconquered Podlasie.
1390 - King Władysław Jagiełło gave Podlasie to Janusz I the Elder.
1404 – Witold, the Grand Duke of Lithuania, took away Podlasie from Janusz I.
1440 - Prince Bolesław IV, the grandson of Janusz I the Elder, occupied Podlasie by an arrangement with the Grand Duke of Lithuania Zygmunt Kiejstutowicz (after the death of Zygmunt).
1443 - the invasion of the successor of Zygmunt: the Grand Duke of Lithuania Kazimierz Jagiellończyk took away Podlasie from Bolesław IV.
The River Liwiec became the border between the Masovian Duchy and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
1526 - after the death of Janusz III - the last Mazovian prince - King Zygmunt I the Old incorporated of the Masovian Duchy into the Lithuanian Crown lands, except for several possessions, including the Castle in Liw, that was left to the sister of the deceased prince Janusz III - Annie - until her marriage.
The border between the Mazovian Land and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was established on the River Liwiec.
1537 - After the wedding of Anna with Stanisław Odrowąż from Sprowa, the Liw stronghold was taken over by Zygmunt I the Old as his royal castle.
The border on the Liwiec between the Polish Kingdom and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was established.
In 1569 - the Union in Lublin between the Polish Kingdom and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania was established. Podlasie was officially incorporated into the crown lands. The state border on the Liwiec ceased to exist. To this day, the old state border serves as the geographical border between Mazovia and Podlasie.

Liw Castle courtyard

Liw Castle courtyard

Liw Castle festival grounds

Liw Castle festival grounds

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We went around the festival grounds and saw what the local farms and companies offered the visitors.

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Culinary festival at Liw Castle

Culinary festival at Liw Castle

Culinary festival at Liw Castle

It was great to relax at the beach. We sat under a willow-tree and has our lunch together watching the people rejoice on the beach and in the river. There is a kayak station, and you can hire one kayak to paddle along the river and back.

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The River Liwiec in Liw
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The village beach at the River Liwiec


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Posted by Vic_IV 13:25 Archived in Poland Tagged masovia mazovia siedlce oginski

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Comments

Looks like a very enjoyable day out.

by irenevt

It was wonderful! So many nice impressions...

by Vic_IV

Lovely day! Did you buy anything from the festival?

by hennaonthetrek

No, we didn't. We took our lunchbox with us. We simply looked at the prices.

by Vic_IV

It is fun to see all the products even without buying any :)

by hennaonthetrek

Henna, I agree with you 100%. We call it window-shopping, ot shop-gazing.

by Vic_IV

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