Château du Buisson de May

Saint-Aquilin-de-Pacy, France

In the Middle ages, the land of today Château du Buisson de May belonged probably to the family de May. The oldest written document dates back to XVth century, when Jean de Brucourt, responsible for the famous Chatelet of Paris, sold the estate of Osmoy Michel de Bordeaux. The family de Bordeaux kept the Buisson de May over the centuries, selling wood, letting out land, farm and houses, as they were aldermen in Vernon. Jean de Bordeaux Bargeville decided to build a new castle in 1781. He asked Jacques-Denis Antoine, a famous royal architect, member of the Academy since 1776, to draw up the plans. Several pages of them can be found in the French National Library. The new castle was located north of the old manor.

In 1892, a banker, Henri Berson, bought the property. He asked architect Charles Couvreux to restore the castle in 1895. In the 20th century the state-owned Caisse d'Allocations Familiales de la Région Parisienne acquired the castle and organised there summer camps for children after several changes in architecture. The English Navy arrived in June 1939, opening a military hospital, where hundreds of wounded, both civilians and soldiers, were care for, under red cross tents. They dug a 100 meter deep well. The Germans arrived in June 1940, and ordered the French engeneers to stay in the park, under tents, in order to repair the telephone around the area of Evreux.

After the war, summer camps reopened, and more than 150 boys and girls had their vacations there. Little by little, the castle fell into ruins: it was empty during cold winters, snow ice and water destroyed the floors and the ceilings. The Caisse d'Allocations Familiales, finally, sold the property in 1976. Restoration started, in the castle, but soon had to be stopped. For the next ten years, the castle was offered to plunderers. Luckily in 1994, it was classified as a Monument Historique, inside, outside, and dry moats. Current owners have done restoration since 1999.

References:

Comments

Your name



Details

Founded: 1781-1783
Category: Castles and fortifications in France

Rating

3.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Nicole Lafosse (2 years ago)
lionel REISNER (3 years ago)
En restauration, château privé ne ce visite que sur demande.
François Jean (3 years ago)
Monument magnifique, cadre qui vaut le coup d'œil !
Isabelle Kuntz (3 years ago)
Très beau lieux
Sophie Renaud (3 years ago)
Salon du chiot 2018
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Trinity Sergius Lavra

The Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius is a world famous spiritual centre of the Russian Orthodox Church and a popular site of pilgrimage and tourism. It is the most important working Russian monastery and a residence of the Patriarch. This religious and military complex represents an epitome of the growth of Russian architecture and contains some of that architecture’s finest expressions. It exerted a profound influence on architecture in Russia and other parts of Eastern Europe.

The Trinity Lavra of St. Sergius, was founded in 1337 by the monk Sergius of Radonezh. Sergius achieved great prestige as the spiritual adviser of Dmitri Donskoi, Great Prince of Moscow, who received his blessing to the battle of Kulikov of 1380. The monastery started as a little wooden church on Makovets Hill, and then developed and grew stronger through the ages.

Over the centuries a unique ensemble of more than 50 buildings and constructions of different dates were established. The whole complex was erected according to the architectural concept of the main church, the Trinity Cathedral (1422), where the relics of St. Sergius may be seen.

In 1476 Pskovian masters built a brick belfry east of the cathedral dedicated to the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles. The church combines unique features of early Muscovite and Pskovian architecture. A remarkable feature of this church is a bell tower under its dome without internal interconnection between the belfry and the cathedral itself.

The Cathedral of the Assumption, echoing the Cathedral of the Assumption in the Moscow Kremlin, was erected between 1559 and 1585. The frescoes of the Assumption Cathedral were painted in 1684. At the north-western corner of the Cathedral, on the site of the western porch, in 1780 a vault containing burials of Tsar Boris Godunov and his family was built.

In the 16th century the monastery was surrounded by 6 meters high and 3,5 meters thick defensive walls, which proved their worth during the 16-month siege by  Polish-Lithuanian invaders during the Time of Trouble. They were later strengthened and expanded.

After the Upheaval of the 17th century a large-scale building programme was launched. At this time new buildings were erected in the north-western part of the monastery, including infirmaries topped with a tented church dedicated to Saints Zosima and Sawatiy of Solovki (1635-1637). Few such churches are still preserved, so this tented church with a unique tiled roof is an important contribution to the Lavra.

In the late 17th century a number of new buildings in Naryshkin (Moscow) Baroque style were added to the monastery.

Following a devastating fire in 1746, when most of the wooden buildings and structures were destroyed, a major reconstruction campaign was launched, during which the appearance of many of the buildings was changed to a more monumental style. At this time one of the tallest Russian belfries (88 meters high) was built.

In the late 18th century, when many church lands were secularized, the chaotic planning of the settlements and suburbs around the monastery was replaced by a regular layout of the streets and quarters. The town of Sergiev Posad was surrounded by traditional ramparts and walls. In the vicinity of the monastery a number of buildings belonging to it were erected: a stable yard, hotels, a hospice, a poorhouse, as well as guest and merchant houses. Major highways leading to the monastery were straightened and marked by establishing entry squares, the overall urban development being oriented towards the centrepiece - the Ensemble of the Trinity Sergius Lavra.

In 1993, the Trinity Lavra was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.