Hultaby gives you in 3D, Hultaby castle (or maybe more accurate, residence), in my view of its 14th century apperance. Today it´s a ruin, just outside the city Vetlanda, Sweden.
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HULTABY RESIDENCE (CASTLE)
Hultaby, or Hultaboda ö , is today a ruin just outside Vetlanda, Sweden. By natural land elevation, and by work to gain land for farming, are the location no longer an island (ö=island). The construction started probably mid 13th century. It was burnt down during the troubled times the century after. If you should call Hultaby for a castle, a residence, or something else, are uncertain and up to you.
Anyhow is the main building, placed on a by area 30x28 meter large plateau. This is made around a natural rock. The walls are mostly build without mortar. Some parts have though later been reinforced. This between the gates, and around the cellar of the tower.
The building with walls of 4-5 meters, where not the only one existing. Around it was about 20 houses located. Made of wood, and used as working shops, and as living areas.
Hultaby should not be compared with strongholds run by kings, or by feudal lords in other places of Europe. Feudalism never really got the grip of Sweden. This was a private residence, located quite a distance to closest town. And as today surrounded by deep forrests, and many lakes.
The name associated with this place is Erengisle Sunesson. His father was Sune Jonsson, from who he propably inherited Hultaby. He was a knight from 1344, and a member of the kings council in 1350. He lived in troubled times, and got involved in the struggle of the crown.
When Erik the son of king Magnus Eriksson, became a rebellion, had he Erengisles support. Erik died though at 20. Erengisle had to go into exile, and took part in trying to get Albrekt of Mecklenburg, as king. He later changed side, and fought against Albrekt. In this period was probably Hultaby burnt down. Around 1370 it ended with a conciliation, but Erengisle took part in the council that limited king Albrekts authority in 1371.
Through his second wife, the Norwegian Annot, got he also a position in the Norwegian council. Here father Malise, used the title Jarl of the Orkney Islands. Erengilse inherited this in 1353. He have though no real influence over the territory. He was probably never there. Erengrisle died in 1392. He was layed to rest in the Vadstena abbey. Hultaby was mentioned in his will.
This is my view of Hultaby in its best days. It´s hardly an exakt description. I am no expert in the field, only with some interest in older days. On the other hand, will you find nobody now living, that can in detail describe this structure. So take it for what it is, a somewhat careful guess.
When the restauration of the castle started in the 1930-s, was the walls in pretty bad condition. The basic shape should though be clear. The relative high tower that have been imagined, should have needed a large base. Any sign of such is missing. Unintended if the remainings of today, was a well, or a cellar to a tower, or something else, so would it probably had a cover. As an compromise, have I made a lower round building. The main house was in 3 joint sections. I have chosen to gradually made them lower.
The stair in the end is my idea. A building of this size, would propably had more then one entrance. If the gates have been covered with arches of wood are uncertain. Many nails have anyhow, been found at the minor one. One last question is the exsistence of any wooden palisade. If not was the edge ontop the wall, probably only about 0.5 meter high. Hultaby was never any real stronghold, and there are no traces after a fence. But any wood from this period will anyhow be long gone. To get a view of Hultaby, with or without a palisade, can you turn one on and off with a button in the menue.
©Jan Lindström 2017-2020