Aizpute castle was built in the 13th and 14th centuries by the Livonian Order. This was regular planned castella type Order’s Castle with corner tower and wooden buildings in the yard. In the 15th century outside at the ring-wall was built the eastern block. After the Livonian War (1558-1583) castle was not suitable for habitation and in written documents from 1555 it is mentioned as a grain storehouse. At the time from end of the 16th till beginning of the 17th century castle was renovated and there still remain the rich parget with the splendid decorative design in the graffiti artistry above the gates that was shaped in that time.
In fights of the Swedish-Polish War (1600-1629) the castle was ravaged again, but in 1665 there were done the renovation works and the garrisons and gun-crews of Jacob the Duke of Courland were deployed there. After the death of Duke Jacob in 1682 castle became the property of Michael Fredrick Nolde. After rebuilding the castle lost its medieval shape of fortress and inside the ring-wall the new living block was added. Gradually the castle lost its adhibition as a dwelling and was inhabited just partly. For that time the culture level in the yard has grown up for 1.5 metres. In the beginning of the 19th century the eastern block and the south-eastern tower got their present flat vaulting and new partition walls. For the beginning of the 20th century the castle of Aizpute was unsuitable for inhabiting and for present day it has partly gone to rack and ruins.
In the beginning of the 19th century, when some parts became unsuitable for inhabiting, the lord of the manor lived in the new manor-house that was built near at the pond in the 2nd half of the 18th century. Later at the pond were built the water mill and the spirit distillery, but at the new manor-house were built the household buildings. Aizpute Evangelic-Lutheran Church and the former castle13-manor complex of buildings creates the unified group of towns-planning architectural objects that also includes the pond and water mill with the dam on the Tebra River.References:
The Château de Chaumont was founded in the 10th century by Odo I, Count of Blois. The purpose was to protect his lands from attacks from his feudal rivals, Fulk Nerra, Count of Anjou. On his behalf the Norman Gelduin received it, improved it and held it as his own. His great-niece Denise de Fougère, having married Sulpice d'Amboise, passed the château into the Amboise family for five centuries.
Pierre d'Amboise unsuccessfully rebelled against King Louis XI and his property was confiscated, and the castle was dismantled on royal order in 1465. It was later rebuilt by Charles I d'Amboise from 1465–1475 and then finished by his son, Charles II d'Amboise de Chaumont from 1498–1510, with help from his uncle, Cardinal Georges d'Amboise; some Renaissance features were to be seen in buildings that retained their overall medieval appearance. The château was acquired by Catherine de Medici in 1550. There she entertained numerous astrologers, among them Nostradamus. When her husband, Henry II, died in 1559 she forced his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, to exchange Château de Chaumont for Château de Chenonceau which Henry had given to de Poitiers. Diane de Poitiers only lived at Chaumont for a short while.
Later Chaumont has changed hands several times. Paul de Beauvilliers bought the château in 1699, modernized some of its interiors and decorated it with sufficient grandeur to house the duc d'Anjou on his way to become king of Spain in 1700. Monsieur Bertin demolished the north wing to open the house towards the river view in the modern fashion.
In 1750, Jacques-Donatien Le Ray purchased the castle as a country home where he established a glassmaking and pottery factory. He was considered the French "Father of the American Revolution" because he loved America. However, in 1789, the new French Revolutionary Government seized Le Ray's assets, including his beloved Château de Chaumont.
The castle has been classified as a Monument historique since 1840 by the French Ministry of Culture. The Château de Chaumont is currently a museum and every year hosts a Garden Festival from April to October where contemporary garden designers display their work in an English-style garden.