Căpâlnaş Castle

Căpâlnaş (spelled also Căpălnaş, Hungarian: Kápolnás), is a village belonging to Birchiş commune, Arad County, Banat, Romania. The village was first mentioned in 1369, as Capolna. Another documentary attestation dates from 1569. In 1965, here were excavated the remains of a medieval fortress with a watchtower.

The Mocioni Castle in Căpâlnaş is the most beautiful in Arad County by the perfect harmony of proportions and simple but elegant decoration of the facade. It was designed by Viennese architect Otto Wagner who raised the castle between 1876-1879. Otto Wagner was inspired by Little Trianon at Versailles, but he did not made a facsimile of the famous model.

The Viennese architect used for the facade grooved columns, which ends with richly decorated capitals. The central stairway climbs into large folds (aesthetic closer rather to Rococo style) to a terrace located in the middle of the main facade. The ascending stairs focuses on the vertical lines of the building. In the upper register of the palace, the main design element is the cornice, artistic enlaced. The access on the terrace is made by three doors, which communicates with the ground floor lounge, where a ladder climb upstairs. The 8 hectares park offers the best conditions for rest and recreation. In front of the terrace there is a fountain in the middle of which is to be found - as in the French castles - the statue of a deer.

The Mocioni family has a rich history. In 1747, Constantine Mocioni, an Aromanian Orthodox priest, left Macedonia and settled in Hungary. The five sons were tradesmen in Budapest, gathering an impressive fortune. Two of them, Andrei and Mihai, were ennobled by Emperor Joseph II and are the ancestors of the two branches of the family: the Mocioni and de Foeni. The history of Căpâlnaş is linked with the evolution of the Mocioni branch of the family, that had initially domains in Tokay, Hungary. Mihai Mocioni's two sons were ennobled by Austrian Emperor Francisc I. Another Mihai (1811-1890) married on 2 February 1836, with his cousin, Ecaterina, from de Foeni branch, unifying the two families. Meanwhile, Ioan Mocioni de Foeni, Ecaterina's father, purchased in 1853 from Counts Alfred, Janos, Gyorgy and Camilo Zichy, 6000 acres of land in Căpâlnaş, for an amount of 260 thousand florins.

Ecaterina and Mihai Mocioni decided to establish here, and they built the French style palace that will be inherited by the last two sons, Alexandru and Eugen. The last owners of the castle were Eugen's children: Petru, Ionel and Ecaterina. Ecaterina married Count Teleki Jeno. In 1948 the castle and estates were nationalized, and later was transformed in a neuro-psychiatric hospital.

Photos from Consiliul Judeţean Arad.