Hen’s Foot

Hen’s Foot (Polish: Kurza Stopka) is the name of one of the Wawel towers. It was built in the 14th century and is located at the north-eastern corner of the castle. Formerly it was called the Hen’s Leg or Belwederek.

The history of Hen’s Foot

The new name was not used until the 20th century. It comes from a metal hen that was located at the top of the tower. It was also the source of several folk sayings, legends and stories, but none of them describes exactly where the name Hen’s Foot came from. In this tower, kings Kazimierz Jagiellończyk and Zygmunt Stary dealt with various state affairs, probably also Queen Jadwiga lived there. Under the Hen’s Foot, there were cellars where barrels of wine were stored. In 1523, there was an assassination attempt on King Zygmunt Stary, who, while standing in the tower’s window, was almost shot by a man hidden in the bushes at the foot of Wawel Castle. The assassin, however, missed and the king escaped alive.

Changes in the appearance of the Hen’s Foot

King Zygmunt III Waza made some changes to the appearance of Hen’s Foot. He ordered to decorate the tower with a marble floor, a marble portal, beautiful paintings and a fireplace. During the interwar period, the Hen’s Foot was renovated again. The room has a lot of antique furniture, paintings, and on the walls you can admire the eighteenth century kurdyban. These rooms are among the most beautiful in the Wawel Castle.

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