French Castles: Chateau d’Argy

Chateau D'Argy

Chateau d'Argy.  A French Renaissance Castle in the town of Argy, in the Indre departement
Chateau d'Argy. A French Renaissance Castle in the town of Argy, in the Indre departement | Source

Visiting The Château d'Argy

Last Saturday we were wondering what to do when I saw a little advert for a mediaeval fair at the Chateau d'Argy. We had never been there, so we decided to go and have a look. Mediaeval fairs around here are generally very entertaining and at the same time educational, not to mention gastronomic discoveries! Unfortunately, we arrived at midday -sacred lunchtime for the French- which meant that the Chateau was closed until 2:30pm.

We had a look a look around the small town of Argy, but as everything was closed for lunch we went to the next biggest town in the map, Buzançais. There too, everything was closed except an all day cheap supermarket where we bought some sandwiches and went to the river side for a picnic!

At 2:30 back in the Chateau we discovered that there was an error on dates and the mediaeval festival had been the previous week... Still, we were there so we went in to see the Castle. For 5 euros each, we took a guided tour along with other tourists.

Like always our little princess was delighted at discovering a new castle. Our little hooligan, on the other hand, was just wanting to chase the deer and peacocks, trying to jump in the watermill or just being a hooligan!

Chateau d’Argy Renacentist Gallery.

La galerie Renaissance, en 2009.  Chateau d'Argy
La galerie Renaissance, en 2009. Chateau d'Argy | Source
Chateau d’Argy Renacentist gallery.
Chateau d’Argy Renacentist gallery. | Source

The Château

In the Indre department -3 hours drive from Paris- in Central France, the Chateau d'Argy was a military castle, a fortress during the mediaeval ages. The newest part of the castle however, dates back to the 19th century.

The castle is surrounded by 40 hectares of forest where wildlife runs free. If you are lucky you will spot the peacocks, deer, or even a wild pig.

The castle was bought in 1966 by the Club du Vieux Manoir who started restoration works. It took them more than ten years to bring the Castle back to its magnificence.

The farm

There is a monumental body of farms occupying more than 120m long. They were built during the XVII century. The farms are divided in different spaces each one for a specific use. The outside of the farms are part of a semi fortified building, where even now we can still see the holes in the walls for the guns against the enemy.

In one of the restored farms, The Colombarium, you can find some National archives from 1862 also saved by the Club du Vieux Manoir. There is also another farm which has been made into a museum housing Arts and traditions from the countryside in the 19th century

Castle of Argy, France

Source
The farm buildings at Chateau d'Argy
The farm buildings at Chateau d'Argy | Source
Outside the Chateau d'Argy (photo taken by the wee hooligan)
Outside the Chateau d'Argy (photo taken by the wee hooligan)
arcaded gallery
arcaded gallery

Chateau d'Argy, The Walls Are Decorated With The Initials Interlaced Of The Family Members,

Chateau d'Argy, The walls are decorated with the initials interlaced of the family members, as well as with emblematic symbols of the time.
Chateau d'Argy, The walls are decorated with the initials interlaced of the family members, as well as with emblematic symbols of the time.

The castle dates back to the 11th century. But most of its registered history goes back only to the 15th and 16th century when the castle was made bigger by orders of Lord Charles de Brillac.

Brillac introduced in the castle a heavy Italian influence, which he brought back from his travels to Italy. From this period is the arcaded gallery in Louis XII style. There we can see a tower and two galleries in which converge a polygonal tower with stairs for access to the higher floors. This gallery is a truly work of craftsmanship, exceptional for its time due to the luxurious decorations and its structure divided in two floors. The walls are decorated with the initials interlaced of the family members, as well as with emblematic symbols of the time.

Chateau D'Argy
Chateau D'Argy

The Donjon, Chateau D'Argy

With a square base it is the tallest building in the castle. 34 metres tall, it houses four levels of stairs. It is through the donjon that we access the second floor and the now called "Pirates room": An exquisite bedroom with treasures from all over the world. There is a giant turtle on the wall, Indian busts, Viking headdresses, and other odd treasures from the five continents.

At the start of the 19th century, the castle changed hands to the De Lamotte family who used the castle as a residence. After that, the castle changed hands several times until it was abandoned during the Second World War.

The Donjon, Chateau D'Argy

The Donjon, Chateau D'Argy
The Donjon, Chateau D'Argy
The Pirate's room
The Pirate's room

Activities

For Easter this castle -as well as others in the area- organize an Easter egg hunt for the children.

There is also a mediaeval festival, this year held the 1st and 2nd of May.

The Castle is engaged with Renewable Energies. For this purpose, the association in charge of the Chateau is restoring a watermill and working on installing a source of electricity.

The castle also serves as a venue for cultural and artistic events. It is also possible to rent part of it for private parties.

Chateau D'Argy, You Could Even Get Married Here

Chateau de Valençay
Chateau de Valençay
Chateau de Azay le Ferron
Chateau de Azay le Ferron

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Comments 13 comments

Isabella Snow profile image

Isabella Snow 8 years ago

I love the pics -- love those gardens!!! There are so many castles to see in Europe, this is on my list now!


compu-smart profile image

compu-smart 8 years ago from London UK

Ooolala Princessa!

thankyou for another grand virtual tour:)


Princessa profile image

Princessa 8 years ago from France Author

Isabella: there are sooo many castles... and I want to see them all...

Compu-smart: you are welcome. Hope that one day you can do the 'live' tour.


pjdscott profile image

pjdscott 8 years ago from Durham, UK

I really enjoyed your tour Princessa - expertly done and most education. The donjon is fascinating and looks somewhat similar to Norman keeps found in medieval Irish castles.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 8 years ago from France Author

pjdscott: You made me curious now... I'll need to go and visit some of these medieval Irish Castles!


Woody Marx profile image

Woody Marx 8 years ago from Ontario, Canada

Enjoyable reading! I like the maze thing there in front of the Chateau de Azay le Ferron. Thanks!


ahmu profile image

ahmu 8 years ago

nice sweet pics these i like it thanks for share it


Amy_Roberts 8 years ago

I love the pictures - thanks for sharing!


Decrescendo profile image

Decrescendo 8 years ago

This place looks great.


Princessa profile image

Princessa 8 years ago from France Author

Woody Marx: That is a gorgeous French garden.

Ahmu and Amy: Happy you enjoyed the pictures :)

Decrescendo: It is a great place. I love discovering new castles, although they share many similarities each one is a new discovery, always hiding something entirely new.


rebekahELLE profile image

rebekahELLE 7 years ago from Tampa Bay

absolutely beautiful~~ a true fairy tale prince/princess land~~ I want to return~~ beautiful pics, Princessa.


EtchUcateChris profile image

EtchUcateChris 6 years ago

My father always told me there was a Chateau d'Argy and even had some pictures of it from when my great uncle went to visit. Unfortunately, he wasn't much of a photographer. Your pictures however, are beautiful.

I always wondered if my heritage was somehow intermingled with this Chateau. My grandfather was French bearing the last name d'Argy. My last name is d'Argy.(which believe me is quite a battle trying to convince people my last name doesn't begin with a capital, and the apostrophe is supposed to be there.)

Your Hub really makes me want to visit France someday. I would love to learn more of the chateau's history!


Princessa profile image

Princessa 6 years ago from France Author

rebekahELLE: you said it, a fairy tale place!

EtchUcateChris: You should visit one day and do some research on your name. There are not many people with that name around here, so who knows, you might find some interesting things in here you might even be related to Honoré Seigneur Jean d'Argy.

You'll find the little village of Argy and its 628 habitants, in Central France, about 3 hours from Paris, it belongs to the city of Buzançais.

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