|ČESKÁ REPUBLIKA||CZECH REPUBLIC|
|Středočeský kraj||Central Bohemia region|
|Okres: Kutná Hora|
Rataje nad Sázavou is situated at an elevation of 383 m on the river Sázava in the Kutná Hora district of eastern Central Bohemia. The municipality has a population of 508 (2019).
The place was first mentioned in a document of 1156, but probably was founded already in the 10th century. In the 13th century, the village had to be rebuilt as the old settlement had been destroyed by a large fire. The German name, Ratais an der Sasau, was used between 1938/39 and 1945; before that, German speakers refered to the place as Rataje, Rataj, or, in older sources, Rattay. The Czech alternative name, Hrazené Rataje, apparently was not official.
Rataje castle [left, no. 2205, and right, no. 3978: right picture] goes back to a Gothic stronghold of about the 14th century, of which parts have remained in the northern wall of the castle. The south wing of the castle was built in Renaissance style in the 16th century, the north and east wings were built in Baroque style around 1672. In 1933 the castle was acquired by the municipality of Rataje. It is now used for the municipality's administration, library, museum and post office.
Pirkštejn castle right, no. 3978: left picture]
was first mentioned in 1346. When Rataje castle (see above) was built, the owners moved there, but the Pirkštejn castle remained maintained.
It was only after the Peasant uprisings in 1627, during which the castle was damaged, that it was finally abandoned. In 1713–1724 it was rebuilt
into a rectory with the addition of a bell tower. The castle is owned by the church but in 2015 was leased to a private person and therefore, with few
exceptions, is not open to the public.