The residential-defensive tower in Bystrzyca Kłodzka
The origins of the brick-made defensive headquarters in Bystrzyca Kłodzka date back to 1319, when Jan Luksemburski, the king of Czech, gave the reeve’s office along with the threre villages and the belongings to Jakub Rucker, and at the same time he gave him the responsibility to surround the town with defensive walls, which was still weak at the time. Perhaps the tower was established in the place of a wooden watchtower, which existed here earlier, but one thing that’s certain is that its compact body was created quite early, probably shortly after the office was taken over by the already mentioned Rucker, The mayor’s office was also mentioned in the chronicles from the times of the hussite wars, during which – as the only building in the town – it efficiently resisted the offensive of the Czech Taborites. The tower was generally reconstructed in the 16th century, giving it a renaissance form. Menawhile, in 1605 it went to the ownership of the army, and from that moment on, it was known as the Soldiers’ Tower.
The tower was constructed on a small elevation surrounded by a moat, within the area of the city walls, closed by the city buildings from the north and by the waters of the rivers Bystrzyca and Nysa Kłodzka from the south and the east. It had a project resembling a sqaure with the sides of 22×23 meters and the heights of at least 25 meters. The tower was equipped with basements carved in solid rocks. In the 16th century, its raw, gothic outside form was changed to match the demands of the age.