Château de Dourdan

Dourdan, France

The Château de Dourdan was built at the request of Philip Augustus in the 1220s in the place of a wood structure. The castle became the property of Jean de Berry in 1385. It was besieged during the French Wars of Religion. Among some of the notable personages who resided in the castle were Philip IV of France's daughter-in-law, Joan II, Countess of Burgundy, detained there from 1314 to 1315 in relation to the Tour de Nesle affair, and La Hire, one of Joan of Arc's comrades-in-arms.

At the end of the 17th century, the Château de Dourdan was given to the Duke of Orléans who turned it into prison. The donjon was used as a prison until 1852. It now houses a museum of local history.

The fortification is characteristic of the military architecture of this period. It is built on a square pattern, with towers at three of the corners and an isolated donjon at the fourth. The walls are punctuated by towers in the middle of each side, and two, on the east side, flank the gatehouse. A deep stone-lined dry moat follows the outline of the castle.

The donjon, the major defensive component of the castle, measures approximately 30 metres in height and 13.6 metres in diameter. It is the typical of the donjons being built by King Philip II Augustus of France at this time, like at Rouen and other French nobility throughout the 13th century.

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Details

Founded: 1220s
Category: Castles and fortifications in France
Historical period: Late Capetians (France)

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.1/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Yo (20 months ago)
Nice little castle
jose luis Sousa (2 years ago)
Nice
Kate Harris (3 years ago)
Was closed, cold and rainy, no shops open. Almost certainly due to the time of year/day of the week. Have been before, was nice then - the boulangerie across the road in the square was lovely.
Michael Matthews (3 years ago)
Beautiful, must do if you happen to be in Dourdan! Can park in the square nearby.
Stephen Shankland (4 years ago)
Nice old chateau fort in the middle of a charming little town. Too bad they shortened the walls and towers, though given the disrepair over the centuries probably makes walking under the ramparts a lot safer. Park and take a hike along the Orge river to the nearby forest, the former royal hunting grounds since the days of Hugh Capet, the first King of the Franks.
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