Tarascon Castle (France)

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Tarascon Castle is located on the banks of the Rhone in the Bouches-du-Rhône department in France. Due to its remarkable state of conservation, this exceptional monument is one of the most beautiful medieval castles in France and Europe, built at the beginning of the 15th century, from 1400 to 1435, by the counts of Provence-Barcelona, ​​Dukes of Anjou , guests of the castles of Angers and Saumur.

On this site stood a first castle, probably built by Roubaud II, Marquis of Provence, between 994 and 1010. This castle, partially destroyed and then rebuilt, was occupied in the mid-13th century by Charles d'Anjou, Count of Provence and brother of Louis IX, king of France. This castle was enlarged by his son Charles II called "the Boiteux". In 1367, Duke Louis d'Anjou, governor of Languedoc and brother of King Charles V of France, wanted to take advantage of the distance of Pope Urban V who had gone to Rome and the absence of Queen Giovanna, countess of Provence, to replace his power to that of the queen. This feat was a new manifestation of the French ambition for Provence. The Duke of Anjou found a captain in the person of Bertrand Du Guesclin who had just been released in December 1367 after his capture at the Battle of Nájera. Du Guesclin left on February 26, 1368 with 2,000 men and laid siege to Tarascon on March 4, 1368. The city was blocked on all sides. Trebuchets claim several victims, including Tarascon's clavaire, Martin Champsaur. The city of Tarascon capitulated on March 20 or 22, 1368, but was conquered in September 1370.

On his return from Italy, Louis II of Anjou, Count of Provence, on November 27, 1400, began the reconstruction of the castle on the site it occupied. The works proceeded rapidly, but were interrupted a few years later and were resumed from 1428 to 1435 by his son Louis III of Anjou.

The architect was Jean Robert who was joined by the sculptors Simon de Beaujeu and Jacques Morel. The materials were borrowed from the Beaucaire quarries. King René made only minor changes from 1447 to 1449 under the leadership of Jean de Serocourt and Regnault de Serocourt, captain and lieutenant of Tarascon, in order to make it more habitable and had the bust of him and that of Queen Jeanne placed. De Laval in a niche in the main courtyard. At the end of his reign, King René had some works undertaken from 1476 to 1479, such as the replacement of the drawbridge with a fixed bridge.

After 1481, the castle was used only occasionally by the king's agents. From the 18th century to 1926, the castle served as a prison, especially for enemy sailors. The depredations caused by this use are repaired by the architects Henri Antoine Révoil and Jean Camille Formigé. It is during these restorations that aliasing is restored.

[Source: Wikipedia]

Images of the castle


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Useful infos

Latitude: 43.8063608
Longitude: 4.6548904
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Map of Tarascon Castle