Foix Castle (France)
Midi-Pyrénées See list of castles in Francia
Built in the eleventh century, this castle valiantly resisted Simon de Montfort, leader of the crusade against the Cathars organized. "I'll melt like grease the rock for them grill master" would he told the fortress that remained impregnable despite his efforts.
The master of the castle is Raymond Roger de Foix, great defender of the Cathars. His riding is a sanctuary for the persecuted, and he himself is surrounded by very committed women. His wife Philippa was among the first religious Cathars his Esclarmonde sister attended the debate between before the crusade "heretics" legates of the Pope, his stepdaughter is believing Cathar and suffered a terrible insult posthumous: in 1269, the Inquisition will exhume and burn her remains.
Despite the departure of the count's family for the Béarn region (Pyrénées-Atlantiques), the castle of Foix continued to symbolize the power of the line of Foix-Béarn and the most famous of them, Gaston Phoebus. Seat of the governor to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, a prison until 1862, the restored castle now houses the very interesting regional museum of the Ariege. Devoted to the history of the County of Foix, construction in the Middle Ages and the life of the castle, the museum also hosts many temporary exhibitions.