France. Pierrefonds. Château de Pierrefonds. Looking Up.
Canon EOS 6D
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM
The Château de Pierrefonds is a castle situated in the commune of Pierrefonds in the Oise département (Picardy) of France. The Château de Pierrefonds includes most of the characteristics of defensive military architecture from the Middle Ages, though it underwent a major restoration in the 19th century.
In the 12th century, a castle was built on this site. Two centuries later, in 1392, King Charles VI turned the County of Valois (of which Pierrefonds was part) into a Duchy and gave it to his brother Louis, Duke of Orléans. From 1393 to his death in 1407, the latter had the castle rebuilt by the court architect, Jean le Noir. In March 1617, during the early troubled days of Louis XIII’s reign, the castle, then the property of François-Annibal d’Estrées (brother of the beauty Gabrielle d’Estrée), who joined the “parti des mécontents” (party of malcontents) led by Henri II, Prince of Condé, was besieged and taken by troops sent by Richelieu, the secretary of state for war. Its demolition was started, but not carried through to the end because of the enormity of the task. The exterior works were razed, the roofs destroyed and holes made in the towers and curtain walls. Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte (later Napoleon III of France) visited the castle in 1850. As emperor, he asked Viollet-le-Duc in 1857 to undertake its restoration.