Toolse Castle

Toolse Castle

Ruins of Toolse Castle are located 4 km from the town of Kunda in the Vihula Parish, Lääne-Viru County in Estonia. In the historic documents it is also known under the names of Tolsburg and Tolschebor. The castle was constructed in 1471 by the orders of Master of Livonian Order Johan von Herz- Volthuzena. It was originally known as Castle Fredeburgom or "peace castle" and was designated to preserve peace of maritime traders from attacking pirates that were quiet common in this area of the Baltic Sea. Toolse Castle is one of the last such military fortifications of the Livonian order in the territory of Estonia.


Location: 4 km from Kunda, Vihula Parish, Lääne-Viru County Map

Constructed: 1471


History of Toolse Castle

The history of Toolse Castle has somewhat conflicting documents that state different fates for the castle. According to some records the Toolse Castle was greatly damaged by the Russian forces under leadership of Ivan the Terrible in 1558 during Livonian War. According to Balthasar Russow on the other hand the castle was handed over without a siege of the castle and without subsequent damage. Then the gentry left the castle they consoled each other saying: "Let them (Russians) take the city and the land, the Danish king will return back these possessions". In 1570 Ivan the Terrible strengthened the defenses of the citadel. After multiple sieges the Swedes eventually captured the Toolse Castle in 1581 after a year long siege. During the Northern War 1700- 21 Swedes were crushed by the Russian forces. Toolse Castle did not escape the same feat. It was abandoned since then. The walls that were closest to the Baltic Sea clearly show the might of Russian Naval Artillery during the siege. The part of Toolse Castle that faces the mainland is much better preserved.