A BRIEF HISTORY
Chateau Lobkovice - located in Lobkovice, today part of Neratovice – was originally a medieval fortified manor house, later rebuilt into a Renaissance and Baroque chateau. The chateau has been a protected monument since 1958 and has been listed as a cultural monument of the Czech Republic since 1966.
First mentioned in 1403, it belonged then to the Prague burgher Prokop Krukner. In 1409 the fortified manor was acquired by the founder of the Lobkovic family, Mikuláš of Újezd, who soon began to use the nickname from Lobkovice (later Lobkowicz). In 1445 Lobkovice was inherited by Jan Popel, the son of Mikuláš of Újezd. Between 1450 and 1451, the fortified manor house was briefly occupied by the troops of King Jiří of Poděbrady. Later, Lobkovice was acquired by Albrecht Jiří of Očedělice. After it had changed hands many times, it was acquired by Beneš Sekera of Sedčice in 1496. The Sekera of Sedčice family had the original stone fortified manor rebuilt into a small Renaissance chateau. In 1615 their descendant Jan Ratibor Sekerka of Sedčice sold Lobkovice to the burgher Václav Majský of Sobíšek, who a year later sold it again to Polyxena of Pernštejn. She gave the manor house to her husband Zdeněk of Lobkovice for his 47th birthday and the chateau thus came back into the possession of the Lobkovice family after many years. At that time, however, the chateau only served as the administrative centre of the estate and provided housing for officials.
During the Thirty Years‘ War the chateau was looted several times and fell into disrepair. It wasn‘t until 1679 that the building was repaired and rebuilt under the ownership of Prince Ferdinand August of Lobkovice, according to the plans of the Italian architect Antonio della Porta. In 1829 Ferdinand Josef of Lobkovice sold Lobkovice to Jan Měchura, a Prague lawyer, who had the chateau rebuilt again. His daughter Terezie, who inherited the chateau in 1840, was the wife of František Palacký. Palacký was very fond of the chateau and often stayed there. In 1897 his son Jan Palacký sold the chateau to Prince Mořic of Lobkovice, in whose family the chateau stayed until 1948, when it became the property of the state and was administered by the Local National Committee in Lobkovice. In the early 1980s the Faculty of Arts of Charles University took over the chateau, and its conversion into a study centre and library depository commenced.
After 1989 the chateau was returned in the restitutions to Alexandre Lobkowicz, the greatgrandson of the 10th Prince Ferdinand Zdeněk of Lobkovic (1858–1938). Today it is owned by his son Maximilian Mues.
The Lobkowicz family (Lobkovic in modern Czech, plural Lobkovicové; Lobkowitz in German) is one of the oldest still existing Bohemian noble families dating back to the 14th century. First Lobkowiczs were mentioned as members of the gentry of north-eastern Bohemia. Mikuláš Chudý ("the Poor") z Újezda (later z Lobkovic) was an important politician of the 15th century.
Bohuslav Hasištejnský z Lobkovic was an essayist and poet. His brother Jan Hasištejnský z Lobkovic was a diplomat and pilgrim to the Holy Land.
Zdeněk Vojtěch Popel z Lobkowic was the head of the Catholic Party in early 17th century Bohemia and received Imperial as well as Bohemian princely title in 1620s. Jiří Kristián z Lobkowicz was a Bohemian politician and head of Bohemian Diet in the late 19th century. In 1918/1919 both Austria and Czechoslovakia abolished nobility including its titles and other prerogatives.
Today, there are four main branches of family: the Roudnice Lobkowiczs, the Křimice Lobkowiczs, the Dolní Beřkovice Lobkowiczs, and the Mělník Lobkowiczs. Historically, the best known member of the Lobkowicz family is probably Joseph Franz Maximilian Lobkowicz (1772-1816), the patron of Beethoven. He was the dedicatee of some of the composer's greatest works, including the 3rd (Eroica), 5th, and 6th symphonies and the Opus 18 string quartets.