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16. 12. 2017

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WOLF TOWER – THE VIENNA GATE

WOLF TOWER – THE VIENNA GATE

- Witness to fierce enemy attacks –
The highest and the most powerful tower in the chain of the Znojmo city fortifications was actually built as a gate tower safeguarding the most vulnerable entrance to the city – the Vienna Gate or the Lower Gate. The gate was intended to repulse any enemy attack coming from the vast downward plains to the south of the city, where the old trade route from Austria approached the city. The Wolf Tower (also sometimes called Vlk’s Tower) and the inner gate were built in the mid-13th century. Soon the gate fortification was systematically extended into a complex system of ditches, suspended bridges, barbacans and walls, situated along the present Kollárova street. From the top gallery of the tower the city garrison could watch all enemy movements in the area south of the city and keep in touch (via signalling “telecommunication”) with the Louka Abbey not far below. The glacis in front of the Vienna Gate saw many ferocious battles in the Middle Ages and later. The last of them was the Battle of Znojmo 1809, in which the Austrian troops made the last attempt to defy the French armies of Emperor Napoleon I. The fortification of the Vienna Gate disappeared in the course of the 19th century, but luckily, the Wolf Tower survived.

- Witness to fierce enemy attacks –

The highest and the most powerful tower in the chain of the Znojmo city fortifications was actually built as a gate tower safeguarding the most vulnerable entrance to the city – the Vienna Gate or the Lower Gate. The gate was intended to repulse any enemy attack coming from the vast downward plains to the south of the city, where the old trade route from Austria approached the city. The Wolf Tower (also sometimes called Vlk’s Tower) and the inner gate were built in the mid-13th century. Soon the gate fortification was systematically extended into a complex system of ditches, suspended bridges, barbacans and walls, situated along the present Kollárova street. From the top gallery of the tower the city garrison could watch all enemy movements in the area south of the city and keep in touch (via signalling “telecommunication”) with the Louka Abbey not far below. The glacis in front of the Vienna Gate saw many ferocious battles in the Middle Ages and later. The last of them was the Battle of Znojmo 1809, in which the Austrian troops made the last attempt to defy the French armies of Emperor Napoleon I. The fortification of the Vienna Gate disappeared in the course of the 19th century, but luckily, the Wolf Tower survived.


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