The fine early Renaissance château is located on the edge of the Forêt d’Ivoy. The land was given to the Scot Sir John Stuart by Charles VII, in thanks for defeating the English at the battle of Baugé in 1421. However, the château was not built until the end of the 15th century, at which time Béraud Stuart, the grandson of John Stuart, returning from a campaign in Italy, constructed the main house to the side of the Chapel, that joined onto the Renaissance Gallery, which was built in 1525 by Robert Stuart, the son-in-law of Béraud Stuart and a comrade-in-arms of Bayard.
In 1670, the last Stuart of Aubigny died and the Château de La Verrerie, as laid down in King Charles VII deed of donation, was returned to the French crown. King Louis XIV, acting on a decree of 18 March 1673, gave the land back to Charles II, King of England, who was the direct male descendant of John Stuart. In the same year, at his request, it was given as a gift to his mistress, Louise de Kérouaille, Duchess of Portsmouth.
La Verrerie has a lovely Renaissance gallery with 16th century frescoes. There are also frescoes in the chapel, dating from the same period.References:
Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.
King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.
The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.
It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.