Hluboka Castle, Czech RepublicThe oldest predecessor to the present-day chateau was an early Gothic castle built around 1250. In the Middle Ages the castle was alternately an aristocratic property & a site of royal administration. In 1562 King Ferdinand I sold Hluboká together with inheritance rights to the Lords of Hradec who changed the castle into a Renaissance stately home. A century later the Hluboká estate was bought off by Jan Adolf I of Schwarzenberg, a noted European diplomat .
Castle Mautendorf (Saltzburg, Austria) was sponsored by Pope Innocent IV who decreed in 1253 that Mautendorf, a market town, should have a castle. Ownership of the castle went to the Turks in 1462 but in 1490 reverted to Saltzburg. In the 15th & 16th centuries, Mautendorf was enlarged with the addition of a smaller tower and the entire building was restored and rebuilt in the 19th century.
Edinburg Castle has played a central role in the history of Scotland. Its site, on a rock rising 300 feet above the city, has been fought over more than 2,000 years. Edinburgh's have been repeatedly battered, razed and restores. Most of the present castle dates from the sixteenth century and after. In 1566 Mary Queen of Scots gave birth to the future James I (VI of Scotland) within the castle.