Castle Questenberg – A Cauldron of Gold

This is the legend of of the destruction of the castle and a generous ghost.

© Vincent Eisfeld /

As the 30 Years’ War raged, the people of the Harz region feared the worst and took everything they valued to Castle Questenberg where they hoped it would be safe. To hide their treasure they filled a large cauldron which they left in the catacombs of the castle. As the war continued, the exact location of the cauldron was forgotten although stories continued that there was treasure to be found.

Many years later, a man followed the stories and finally found the castle and the entrance to the catacombs, by now long overgrown. He spotted a small hole in a wall and after some digging found a hidden room. As he climbed into the room a ghost appeared and pointed out the cauldron which was still in the centre and full of gold pieces. The ghost offered a piece to the man and told him to return each day to take another, but no more. With that, the ghost disappeared. The man took the piece of gold and left. He returned the day after and took another and continued with this for quite some time. He eventually had enough gold to buy a large farm, with a beautiful house and plenty of land and cattle. Yet he continued to return to the castle each day to collect a piece of a gold. Before long he did not have to work anymore and left the labour to others in his employ. Each day, he looked at the cauldron which never seemed to hold less gold and wondered what would happen if he took a little bit more. Eventually, his greed overcame him and one day he took two pieces. Since nothing happened, he continued to take two pieces each day and grew even richer but the people in town started to distrust him and talked behind his back about his wealth and how he had acquired it so quickly. Many of them were poor and yet he would never offer them even the most basic charity. His staff he paid poorly and treated them worse. He was known to brag about how rich he was and to drink and gamble deep into the night. And he grew bolder and bolder. One day he took three pieces and the next day four. Eventually, he took a bag and filled it with gold. But suddenly, as he was looking for more space to take even more, a large flame erupted from the cauldron and the room filled with the noxious stench of sulphur. As the man looked at his bag the coins had disappeared and so had the cauldron. Returning home he noticed that all of his wealth was gone also and he had no money to pay his gambling depts or his staff. The cauldron of gold was lost forever and the man died poor and alone. 

Did you know that this is not the only myht linked to this castle? Read the Story of the Missing Daughter next

Thinking of visiting the region: click here

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