The Château de Flaugergues is one of many follies erected by wealthy merchants surrounding the city. The castle preserves antique furniture and collection of Flemish tapestries.
The follies in the region were constructed by aristocrats serving the French king. In 1696, Etienne de Flaugergues, member of the Cour des Comptes, bought a piece of land and built which henceforth carried his name. It took him 45 years to give the existing house its current appearance. From then on, Flaugergues became an example for the various other follies constructed by wealthy merchants surrounding Montpellier.
In 1811, the Boussairolles family bought the estate, and Charles Joseph de Boussairoles designed the orangerie and the park in English garden style in 1850. Inherited by generations of nobles, it still gives an idea of the life of the French nobility in the 17th century.
It is not so much the building itself as the use that is made of the area surrounding it that makes Flaugergues interesting architecturally speaking. The architect is not known, but it is certain that there have been multiple people working on the estate between 1696 and 1730. Much use is made of the difference in terrain level, creating separate spaces within the garden and making the mansion look grander than it in fact is.
The façade is cut in half by a doorway with Doric pilasters, carrying an entablature with rose sculpted metopes. The different levels of the house are emphasized by bands, which was fashionable in the 17th century. The large windows give the first level an air of importance, while the back wall of the building is almost blind.
The most striking part of Flaugergues is the interior, with the staircase taking up almost one-third of it. Every floor is served by this staircase with its characteristic hanging key vaults and forged iron banisters.
Since Roman times, vines have been grown on this spot. A descendant of Jean-Baptiste Colbert now produces the Flaugergues wine.References:
Roman Walls of Lugo are an exceptional architectural, archaeological and constructive legacy of Roman engineering, dating from the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The Walls are built of internal and external stone facings of slate with some granite, with a core filling of a conglomerate of slate slabs and worked stone pieces from Roman buildings, interlocked with lime mortar.
Their total length of 2117 m in the shape of an oblong rectangle occupies an area of 1.68 ha. Their height varies between 8 and 10 m, with a width of 4.2 m, reaching 7 m in some specific points. The walls still contain 85 external towers, 10 gates (five of which are original and five that were opened in modern times), four staircases and two ramps providing access to the walkway along the top of the walls, one of which is internal and the other external. Each tower contained access stairs leading from the intervallum to the wall walk of town wall, of which a total of 21 have been discovered to date.
The defences of Lugo are the most complete and best preserved example of Roman military architecture in the Western Roman Empire.
Despite the renovation work carried out, the walls conserve their original layout and the construction features associated with their defensive purpose, with walls, battlements, towers, fortifications, both modern and original gates and stairways, and a moat.
Since they were built, the walls have defined the layout and growth of the city, which was declared a Historical-Artistic Ensemble in 1973, forming a part of it and becoming an emblematic structure that can be freely accessed to walk along. The local inhabitants and visitors alike have used them as an area for enjoyment and as a part of urban life for centuries.
The fortifications were added to UNESCO"s World Heritage List in late 2000 and are a popular tourist attraction.