Château de By

Thomery, France

The Château de By is a town museum run by the town of Thomery. The building was purchased in 1859 by the French animal painter Rosa Bonheur, who moved her studio there. Aged 37, she was at the height of her popularity and made the building her home and studio for forty years, with pens for her animals in its park. She rebuilt the chateau to make it comfortable and to add a vast neo-Gothic studio room with the space and light she needed. It was in the chateau that empress Eugenie presented her with her Légion d'Honneur in 1865.

The museum mainly consists of objects relating to Bonheur's everyday life (including a Native American costume given her by Buffalo Bill) and the building has remained unchanged since her death in 1899, other than the sale of all the paintings it once contained.



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Founded: 1859
Category: Castles and fortifications in France


4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Karim Kadry (12 months ago)
Excellent house/museum of Rosa Bonheur the famous French painter .. the place is very authentic and the guide though in French but was very informative .. the tour itself takes about one hour ... though the place is far from other places but it is worthy .. online reservation is required in advance as it is guided only .. for English speakers you can scan a QR code and listen to the commentary
Henri H. Becker (12 months ago)
Just outstanding, great student guide and lots of detailed information. We loved it.
Karen Arends (14 months ago)
Fascinating museum of an artist who absolutely should be more well known! She was a woman before her time, an amazing painter and left a beautiful home that should be visited!
Markalan Wind (19 months ago)
Very cute old mansion that belonged to 19th century painter of animal scenes. Her painting studio feels like a trip back in time. /very few authentic works of the artist and a lot of cheap at 17 EUROS entrance it is pricey for what you get. Some recent attractions border on the gimicky....such as visitors can block print animals on nice paper, and there are some cheap blow-ups of early photographs of her works. Nice tea room and B&b but we did not stay. The current owner acquired the site in 2017 and seems to be gradually upgrading. Her student daughter Lou guided us and showed her passion for the subject making all the difference. Ps on arrival total chaos due to a huge coachload of Dutch tourists arriving at the same Lou saved the day by guiding us through the garden first...
Andrew Salmon (23 months ago)
Enjoy the photos. The interior you can see if you arrive when open. The view from down the hill was worth the visit.
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