9 - Hexenturm: Stadt Möckmühl


Hexenturm (witches-tower)

In the past the Hexenturm was called “Wegtuermle” (way-side-tower) and in the 19th century it was also called “Buergerturm” (citizen’s tower). Between 1838 and 1880 the half-timbered storey was used as a prison for the citizens of the town. It was probably called witches-tower when at the beginning of the 20th century a paper was published which described witches trials in Moeckmuehl and stated that in 1655 a woman accused of being a witch was imprisoned in the tower. The dungeon was built for people sentenced by the “Centgericht” (High-Court). It was 5 metres deep and had been filled in when out of use.

In 1981 members of the Heimatkundlicher Arbeitskreis (Local History Group) took all the rubbish out and cleaned it. They found pieces of pottery and a French coin dated 1716 with the image of Louis XV. The coin is exhibited in the local museum. In 1999 the inside of the tower was reno-vated by members of the Heimatkundlicher Arbeitskreis and a fairy tale room was installed on the upper floor.To the left of the tower a stone monument is fitted into the town wall. It is a copy and the original is in the muse-um. Originally it was part of the Reidenberg house built in 1581which used to stand near the Hinteres Tor (back gate) and was demolished in 1938. It shows the naked figure of a female with necklace and bracelet who stands on a globe. In her hands she holds a skull and an hourglass. This is a symbol for the transience of the world and human beings.

We now climb up the steps to the castle at the “Hinteres Tor” (back gate). It was demolished in 1828. At the top, we turn right and go to the house Schlossberg No. 23. It was erected on the remaining walls of the former mano-rial fruit barn A destroyed by fire in 1886. From here we have a good view across the town and right below us we see the Eulenhof (the origin came perhaps from Ailhof = Adelshof). Presumably it was the area of a manor farm B one of the oldest parts of Moeckmuehl. We go back the same way along the wall that surrounds the castle till we come to the “Oberes Tor” (upper gate).