The Château de Chenonceau

The Château de Chenonceau
The Château de Chenonceau

The Chateau de Chenonceau is one of the great jewels to be visited on the Route des Châteaux de Loire, made up of palaces fortified or palatial fortresses, such as Chambord Castle.

In the case of Chenonceau we are facing an exceptional palace (chateau, in French) unique. And it is because of its undoubted architectural qualities, and because it is a construction designed by a woman, that is to say, an exceptional fact, or at least a minority throughout the History of Art, since women for centuries have not been It's not easy to develop this type of tasks.


Chenonceau Castle

Well, Château de Chenonceau was built by Katherine Briçonnet in the year 1513. And it wasn't just a woman who designed it, but several women who that promoted different reforms over time. For all these reasons, it is often known as the “Castillo de las Damas”.

This is a masterpiece of the Renaissance in France. Although, the construction had medieval antecedents as a fortified mill, hence it is above the waters of the Cher. The well and a tower were spared from that.

The 16th century construction has two distinct parts. A central body on the shore, and another elongated and rectangular that rises above the river. In the first body, the 4 rooms are arranged on the sides of acenter hall. And that is extended by a Venetian-inspired staircase that leads to the two-story gallery that leads to the elevated area over the waters.

The body with a square floor plan was first built on solid ground. That is the construction that Katherine Briçonnet would do. The truth is that this woman was the wife of Thomas Bohier, and he was going to be the one who directed the works. However, other occupations took him away from here, and it was his wife who fulfilled that role.

By accident of history,King Henry IIgranted the castle to his mistressDiane de Poitiersaround 1535. However, when the monarch died, her legitimate wife,Catherine de Medici, kicked her out of here, and incidentally had the gallery built over the river, the most impressive of the complex. By the way, these pillars not only fulfill a structural function, but are also useful spaces, since the old kitchens and warehouses were there, and they even have individual access from the water.

It is a most daring complex, both on the outside, as it is a construction supported by pillars of a bridge, and on the inside, where there is a lavish collection of art and furniture. And to that we must add the care and attention with which the surrounding gardens were conceived, which, as is customary in French gardening include its labyrinth area, flower beds, trees, fountains and ponds.

In short, the entire complex of Château de Chenonceau is an excellent example of the lavishness withit was experienced for a time by French aristocracy and roy alty.

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