Bojnice Castle hosts a Festival every year - the International Festival of Ghosts and Spirits.
There is a legend connected with the castle, oh which i have heard several versions in varying detail.
Generally, the knight that owned the castle was a good man and a brave warrior. The evil plotters accused his beautiful wife of infidelity while the knight was away in battle. The knight ordered the Lady to jump from the castle's highest tower with their newborn child. If she lived she was innocent. The Lady jumped and was carried up and away, proving her innocence. The accusers went up in a puff of smoke.The Black Lady of Bojnice is said to haunt the castle, wondering the halls of the castle wearing black or appearing as a strange shadow.
I have seen several versions of this legend, and have also seen that the Black Lady supposedly also guards the halls of Kežmarok Castle in Eastern Slovakia. Hard to say!
These stories can be fascinating, though you have to wonder if they are just flights of fancy or a creative mind. There have been tales of a night watchman at the castle seeing the apparition of a guard dog or other tales that a gilded angel's head has been seen spinning on the ceiling of one of the rooms of the castle.
Not surprisingly, this has resulted in increased ticket sales for the castle. No convincing explanations have ever been issued from official sources, no confirmation or denials.
Interestingly, several reports (multiple times) had it that the sarcophagus was leaking some vile fluid. Experts were brought in and put cameras inside the sarcophagus. The explanation was that the liquid might have been the last of the remains of Palffy, or a combination of enbalming fluid. Strange.
None of this was mentioned to us during the tour and I only mention it because of this other thing I saw- see my tip about the sarcophagus.
When I visit castles or other residences of the sort I bear in mind that not all the furnishing are original. Due to a large number of fires, for example, a lot of castles do not have original furnishings. Secondly, I try to pay attention to the time the owner lived in. A castle whose primary purpose is defensive is going to have much different vibe than one which was more than anything else residential.
Anyway. at the end of the tour of Bojnice castle I saw something that struck me as rather odd. On the one of the panels of the sarcophagus I saw what appeared to be figures of monkeys at the end of each of the legs of the cross. Monkeys? I couldn't think of why someone would have this on a sarcophagus, which tends to be rather traditional religious imagery. I checked with my tour guide, he agreed that the figures looked to be monkeys. The castle tour guide was very surprised when we took her aside and asked her. she agreed with us but could provide no explanation.
I have since written (quite recently) to the art historian at the castle and hopefully will get a good explanation for this. It just struck me as odd.
Unfortunately the light was somewhat dark so i was not able to get a picture of it.