Elmstein Castle Ruin - Elbenstein
However, the castle did not remain in the feudal possession of the Lords of Elmstein for long, for even before the extinction of the dynasty in the 14th century there had been numerous pledges and sub-pledges. Since the middle of the 13th century, parts of the palatine castle and its accessories - above all extensive forests - had been in the pledge possession of the Counts of Zweibrücken, who in turn sub-pledged the castle to third parties. In 1284, Jakob gen. Stangen and Walter gen. Kisteln confirmed that the Counts of Zweibrücken had released Elmstein Castle from the pledge. It was not until 1291 that the castle returned to the sole possession of the Palatinate, for Walram of Zweibrücken sold his share of the castle to the Count Palatine at that time. At this time, the Count Palatine again confirmed to Otterberg Monastery the extensive forest and grazing rights in Elmstein Forest, which were first documented in 1253 (and last documented in 1399) and were already disputed at that time.
As was common practice in the Middle Ages and the early modern period, the castle and lordship were used as speculative objects. In 1315, for example, King Ludwig the Bavarian, in his capacity as Count Palatine, took the castle as security in connection with a legal transaction with Count Jofried of Leiningen. Obviously, Ludwig quickly succeeded in getting rid of his debts, so that fourteen years later, in the House Treaty of Pavia, he was able to leave Elmstein Castle to his palatine cousin Ruprecht I free of debt. The latter immediately bequeathed the castle to Count Simon of Zweibrücken-Bitsch, who held it until 1354.
The counts of Sponheim followed the Zweibrückeners as feudal owners. Apparently, Count Johannes of Sponheim owned Elmstein as a fiefdom of the Palatinate as early as 1376 and was still in possession of the castle in 1395. He had it administered by his bailiff Gerhard von Flörsheim in 1418 and by Meinrad von Koppenstein in 1430. However, the count palatine's access to the castle remained: one year later, the Sponheimer had to undertake to open the castle to the feudal lord at any time.
After the death of the last Sponheimer, the fortified castle reverted to the Electoral Palatinate in 1437 as a reverted fief, and it was enfeoffed as a fief to Heinrich von Zeiskam - as had already been promised in 1427. Only a few decades later, however, the castle was pledged again: in 466 to Erhart von Remchingen, who invested 600 gulden in the upkeep and expansion of the castle, and after a temporary release by Elector Philipp in 1492 to Heinrich von Pack. With the permission of the feudal lord, he too spent no less than 400 gulden on the castle. In 1516 (1513?) Albrecht von Pack, the son of the aforementioned Heinrich, followed as pledgee.
For more information, see: www.kuladig.de and www.archivdatenbank.lha-rlp.de
(Sources: Gabriele Kratz and Joachim Kosubek -owner- Wiesbaden, 2019) and Jürgen Keddigkeit, Bezirksverband Pfalz, 2018.
Copyright notice: The content presented here is protected by copyright. The media displayed may be subject to additional copyright conditions, which are indicated on them. Recommended citation: "Burgruine Elmstein nörd des Speyerbachtals". In: KuLaDig, Culture.Landscape.Digital. URL: www.kuladig.de/Objektansicht/KLD-279067 (Retrieved: 22 April 2021).