Chateaus & Castles Cont.


Chateau St Jean de Beauregard

The Château de Saint-Jean de Beauregard, located in Essonne in the Regional Natural Park of the Haute Vallée de Chevreuse, is a 19th century castle classified as a historical monument, remarkably well preserved.

Real haven of verdant tranquillity only 30 minutes south of Paris in the Regional Natural Park of the Haute Vallée de Chevreuse, this splendid architectural complex is retaining all the charm and elegance of its classical 17th century environment.

A real transparent castle, this château opens directly onto the surrounding countryside and boasts a truly exceptional panoramic view, earning it the title of Beauregard. Inhabited all year round, it is fully furnished and houses a number of portraits and family heirlooms. From the summer room to the library and from the green room to the dining room, the remarkably well-preserved interior decoration is the perfect illustration of an exquisitely refined and delicate way of life.

Chateau de Saint Germain Laye

The Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye is a former royal palace in the commune of Saint-Germain-en-Laye, in the département of Yvelines, about 19 km west of Paris, France. Today, it houses the National Museum of Archaeology.

The first castle, named the Grand Châtelet, was built on the site by Louis VI in 1124. The castle was expanded by Louis IX in the 1230s. The oldest parts of the current château were reconstructed by Francis I in 1539, and have subsequently been expanded several times. On 10 July 1547 a political rivalry came to a head in a bloody game here. Against the odds, Guy Chabot, 7th baron de Jarnac triumphed over François de Vivonne, seigneur de la Chasteigneraie, giving rise to the coup de Jarnac.

Louis XIV turned the château over to King James II of England after his exile from Britain in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. King James lived in the château for thirteen years, and his daughter Louise-Marie Stuart was born in exile here in 1692. King James lies buried in the nearby Church of Saint-Germain; his wife Mary of Modena remained at the château until her death in 1718. Their son James left the château in 1716, ultimately settling in Rome. Many Jacobites—supporters of the exiled Stuarts—remained at the château until the French Revolution, leaving in 1793. The Jacobites often consisted of former members of the Jacobite court, and the apartments left empty in the château by the Jacobite court pensioners upon their death, were often passed down to their widows and children by the caretaker of the château, Adrien Maurice, 3rd Duke of Noailles.[8] The Jacobite colony at Saint-Germain was still dominant in the 1750s, when they were however treated with increasing hostility. After the death of the Duke de Noailles in 1766, who had been responsible for the continuing Jacobite dominance because of his preference to give rooms to Jacobites, the British dominance quickly decreased and more French inhabitants were given lodgings in the château: the last member of the Stuart court was Theresa O'Connel, who died in 1778.[8] The last descendants of the British Jacobites, by then mostly bearing French names, were evicted when the building was confiscated by the government during the French revolution in 1793.

Chateau de Maisons Laffitte

The Château de Maisons (now Château de Maisons-Laffitte, designed by François Mansart from 1630 to 1651, is a prime example of French baroque architecture and a reference point in the history of French architecture. The château is located in Maisons-Laffitte, a northwestern suburb of Paris, in the department of Yvelines, Île-de-France.
The Longueil family, long associated with the Parlement de Paris, had been in possession of part of the seigneurie of Maisons since 1460, and a full share since 1602. Beginning in 1630, and for the next decades, René de Longueil, first president of the Cour des aides and then président à mortier to the Parlement de Paris, devoted the fortune inherited by his wife, Madeleine Boulenc de Crévecœur (who died in 1636), to the construction of a magnificent château. By 1649, he was able to spend the summer months in his new house, but works on the outbuildings continued after that date. Louis XIV visited Maisons in April 1651.

After the death of René de Longueil, in 1677, the château passed to his heirs until 1732, and then in succession to the marquise de Belleforière, then to the marquis de Soyécourt. In 1777, it became the property of King Louis XVI's brother, Charles Philippe, comte d'Artois, who carried out important interior transformations under the direction of his house architect François-Joseph Bélanger. These works were interrupted in 1782 for lack of funds. Maisons then ceased to be kept up.

Confiscated during the Revolution as "national goods", the château was sold in 1798 to an army provisioner, M. Lauchère, resold in 1804 to Maréchal d'Empire Jean Lannes, and then resold once again, in 1818, to the Parisian banker Jacques Laffitte. Starting in 1834, Lafitte proceeded to develop the surrounding park as building lots; he tore down the fine stables to furnish construction materials for the purchasers. After his daughter, the Princesse de la Moskowa, sold the château in 1850, it passed to M. Thomas de Colmar, and to the painter William Tilman Grommé [ru], who farmed out the small park and demolished the entrance gateway to the forecourt, enclosing the severely reduced space with a wrought-iron grille brought from the Château de Mailly in Picardy. Grommé died in 1900. In his last will, he ordered his whole property to the city of Viipuri, which decided to keep his art collection but sell the château.

In 1905, the State purchased the château to save it from demolition. It was classed as a monument historique in 1914.

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