Kloster Königsfelden. Photo/Foto: TES.

The Habsburg Path

Even one of the most powerful and longest-reigning dynasties of Europe has a beginning.

The origins of the Habsburgs are in the Alsace in France and in the Aargau in Switzerland.

Written sources in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries confirm possessions (lands, castles) and the foundation of monasteries in these regions in the eleventh en twelfth centuries.

The most famous monasteries are Muri and Hermetschwil in Aargau and Murbach and Ottmarsheim in Alsace.

The castle and village of Habsburg recall the first centuries of the rise of the dynasty. Habsburg is derived from the German name Havichsberg or Havesborc or Habicht and means castle of the Hawk.

Through inheritance, conquests, the extinction of competitors (including the dynasties of Kyburg, Zähringen and Swabia) or royal gifts, the dynasty became  powerful. Count Rudolf I (1218-1291) was the first of the dynasty to be elected German king (1273).

The path (der Habsburger Weg) is a hiking trail that leads to medieval sites in the canton of Aargau, including the monasteries of Muri, Königsfelden, Wettingen and Hermetschwil, the castles of Wildegg, Habsburg and the ruins of Stein and the towns of Brugg, Bremgarten, Lenzburg, Baldegg and Baden.

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