History and legends of the Golshany Castle

History and legends of the Golshany Castle

14.12.2020 Golshany

About the history of Golshansky Castle

When they talk about ghosts in Belarus, they immediately think of Golshany Castle. Locals pass on the legends from generation to generation and are happy to tell them to the tourists. And the famous Belarusian writer Vladimir Korotkevich added fuel to the controversy. It was he who gave literary immortality to the Black Lady and the White Monk in his novel "The Black Castle of Olshany". And although the author himself assured that he did not take a "photo" from Golshany in his literary work, we understand that fictional events were written under the impression of what he had heard and seen right here.

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According to the chronicle, the castle had existed in these places at least since 1280 and was the family nest of the  princely dynasty of the Golshans. In 1525, two famous families were united - Elena Golshanskaya married magnate Pavel Sapega. The Golshany Castle owed its new look in stone to Pavel, at that time it became one of the most magnificent castles in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Not far from the castle, Pavel Sapega built a church and a monastery of the Franciscan Catholic Order. Unfortunately, the architectural ensemble has reached our days in its saddest form. The monastery and the church had stood up to some extent, but the locals practically pulled the castle over the bricks. Many houses were built of this very brick "with a fingerprint", i.e. with the handprint of the master, as well as the House of Culture in Golshany.

Only in 2018 did the destroyed castle begin to revive. The North Tower was rebuilt, and several viewing platforms were built over the ruins of Golshany Castle. The restoration brought many surprises - for example, six nerve paintings (the so called vault relief) and paintings of the XVII-XVII centuries were opened.

Legends of the Golshansky Castle

To be quite honest, stories about ghosts are not so much connected with Golshany Castle as with a monastery. The legend is this: during its construction, one of the walls was constantly heeling. Sapega was angry with the builders, and then they decided to make a sacrifice.   They decided that the first of the wives who would bring her husband lunch would be walled up in the wall. The victim, as legends say, was, of course, the most beautiful girl. You may not believe it - but in the second half of the 20th century, during excavations in the monastery, a skeleton was discovered, and its location spoke of a violent death. The bones were ordered to be buried in the cemetery - but both builders soon died, and with them the mystery of the burial site went away. And so, since then, many people who have been to the monastery have heard footsteps, sighs in the empty galleries, and even seen the ghost of a girl in a white dress that had decayed. Even researchers from the Academy of Sciences came to Golshany, taking measurements and detecting magnetic anomalies.

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There is also a legend that the monastery and castle in Golshany were connected by a secret passage. The heroes of Vladimir Korotkevich's novel get into a dungeon where they almost die. It is very likely that the underground passage did take place - the distance between the structures is relatively small, about 500 metres. And the Sapegas liked to live at a high rate, so it's no wonder if they moved on three horses rather than on foot underground. The secret passage has not yet been discovered, but the restoration of Golshany Castle continues.

Prospects of the Golshansky Castle

In the future, there is an idea to create a pond with an underwater stage in the courtyard of Golshany Castle, and to build exhibition halls and other tourism infrastrunture around it. There are plans to use modern visual effects to put up images of former owners and maybe even ghosts in the North Tower. Already now there is something to show to tourists in the Golshany Castle. And for people with an imagination who are interested in mysticism, we warmly recommend visiting Golshany on excursions!

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  • Minsk - Ivye - Subotniki - Zhemyslavl - Traby - Halshany - Baruny - Kreva - Minsk
  • Without meals
  • Number of hours 12

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