TRETSCH, Aberlin
(b. 1510, Stuttgart, d. ca. 1578, Stuttgart)

Exterior view

Altes Schloss, Stuttgart

The seat of the counts and dukes of Württemberg up to the 18th century, the Altes Schloss is situated in the centre of Stuttgart. The first building on the site was put up by Duke Ludolf on a man-made hill in the mid-10th century. About 1320 the castle was rebuilt in local sandstone for the House of Württemberg. In addition to a moat, 7 or 8 m deep, and a covered sentry walk, the structure included the Dürnitzbau, a large, centrally divided hall for tournaments and festivities.

From 1553 Christopher, Duke of Württemberg (reg 1550-68), had the moated stronghold converted into a residential castle by Aberlin Tretsch and Blasius Berwart I (active 1553-1590). The Dürnitzbau was given a new façade with bay windows, and from 1557 was extended by three wings fronted by three-storey arcades facing the courtyard. This was one of the first Renaissance courtyards in southern Germany. With the three new ranges, the old Dürnitzbau has a four-range layout around a rectangular courtyard. The arcaded ranges are broken up regularly by pavilions at roof level.

Notable features are the equestrian staircase leading to the upper floors and the Schlosskirche (1558-62), a very early German Protestant church, designed for preaching. The three aesthetically important corner towers were added in 1572, 1576 and 1687. The moat was filled in the 18th century.

The Altes Schloss was largely destroyed in 1944. In the rebuilding from 1947 to 1971 its original appearance was retained, but almost all the interior was modernized and adapted to the needs of the Württembergisches Landesmuseum.

The photo shows a view from the Schlossplatz.

View the ground plan of the Altes Schloss.