Loches Castle in France, Loire Valley resort (Topic)

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Loches Castle in France, Loire Valley resort

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The Royal Castle of Loches is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is the oldest surviving donjon in France. Built by Fulk the Black in the 9th century. The lands on which Losh is located belonged to the Angevin Count Fulk I the Red, but the history of the castle begins with the appearance of Fulk the Black as a count. It was he who ordered to build a fortress of stone. Construction began in 1005 and lasted for 65 years. The fortress was conceived exclusively as a defensive one.

Like the Langeais castle, Loches passed into the hands of Philip II Augustus, in 1195 it was taken away by Richard the Lionheart, but four years after his death, the castle again went to Philip, who turned the castle into a state prison. Also, Philip Augustus restored some elements of the buildings and erected new ones.

A few decades later Agnes Sorel, the favorite of Charles VII, settled in the castle. She bequeathed to bury her remains here. During the Revolution, the rebels almost completely destroyed the Old Residential Building, Anne's Chapel, prison cells, the Church of Notre Dame de Loches, the grave of Agnes.

In the 15th century, the New Tower was added to the Old Residential Building and guard tower of Martello. At that time, the castle included a fortress wall and a tower of the XIII century, a watchtower of the XIV century, a hunting pavilion of the XV century. Among the new buildings – Chapel of Anna of Brittany.

Of interest are the prison cells, which have seen many high-ranking prisoners, including the famous historian Philippe de Commen, Duke of Milan, Ludovico Sforza, known as the Duke of Moreau, the bishops of Puy and Authen, Antoine de Chabanne and Jacques Guraud.

Ancient legends tell of a huge number of underground caves and rooms under the castle. Legend has it that once the owner of the castle of Pontbrillant stumbled upon one of these rooms and, opening it, found there the corpse of a tall man in a sitting position. A gust of wind crumbled the body to dust. A chest with clothes was also found there. According to some scientists, this is not a fiction, but a real case, because the bones of this unknown prisoner were transferred to the Church of Notre Dame.

Some underground rooms are open to the public. The most interesting of them is – a torture chamber equipped by Charles VII in the 15th century. It still contains the shackles that held the prisoners' legs during quartering.

From the keep of the castle you can clearly see the difference between the old part of the buildings and the later ones. The village and the high part of the buildings were erected during the era of wars, therefore they are equipped with watchtowers, and the features of the Renaissance are guessed in the New Building. Restoration work began in 1806, and in 1861 the castle of Loches was ranked among the most important monuments of French history.

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Topic: Loches Castle in France, Loire Valley resort.Loches Castle in France, Loire Valley resort

Author: Kelly Costine