Guédelon Castle

Guédelon Castle

Guédelon Castle (French: Château de Guédelon [ʃɑto d(ə) ɡedlɔ̃]) is a castle currently under construction near Treigny, France. The castle is the focus of an experimental archaeology project aimed at recreating a 13th-century castle and its environment using period technique, dress, and material.

In order to fully investigate the technology required in the past, the project is using only period construction techniques, tools, and costumes. Materials, including wood and stone, are all obtained locally. Jacques Moulin, chief architect for the project, designed the castle according to the architectural model developed during the 12th and 13th centuries by Philip II of France.

Construction started in 1997 under Michel Guyot, owner of Château de Saint-Fargeau, a castle in Saint-Fargeau 13 kilometres away. The site was chosen according to the availability o...Read more

Guédelon Castle (French: Château de Guédelon [ʃɑto d(ə) ɡedlɔ̃]) is a castle currently under construction near Treigny, France. The castle is the focus of an experimental archaeology project aimed at recreating a 13th-century castle and its environment using period technique, dress, and material.

In order to fully investigate the technology required in the past, the project is using only period construction techniques, tools, and costumes. Materials, including wood and stone, are all obtained locally. Jacques Moulin, chief architect for the project, designed the castle according to the architectural model developed during the 12th and 13th centuries by Philip II of France.

Construction started in 1997 under Michel Guyot, owner of Château de Saint-Fargeau, a castle in Saint-Fargeau 13 kilometres away. The site was chosen according to the availability of construction materials: an abandoned stone quarry, in a large forest, with a nearby pond. The site is in a rural woodland area and the nearest town is Saint-Sauveur-en-Puisaye, about 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) to the northeast.

History

In 1979, French entrepreneur Michel Guyot purchased the ruins of the Château de Saint-Fargeau and began restoring it with profits raised on-site.[1] In late 1995, a study by Guyot's staff revealed the medieval foundations beneath the current, brick ruins, complete with a hypothesized plan of the original castle. After some consideration, Guyot rebuilt the existing castle, but began assembling funds and experts – and opening negotiations with the French government – to build a new castle.[2] Over five months in 1997, Guyot raised €400,000 from the European Union, local and the central French governments, and commercial entities.[1]

A former sandstone quarry was chosen as the site of Guédelon Castle because of its relative elevation and abundance of local natural resources, which would have been expensive to transport in the Middle Ages.[3][4] The castle location is in a woodland, two hours south of Paris, near Treigny. The ceremonial first stone was laid on 20 June 1997,[5] and permission for the construction was received from the commune of Treigny on 25 July 1997.[6]

After ground-breaking mid-1997 through early 1998, the site was cleared and the first workshops erected.[6][7] By 1998 the castle perimeter had been built up to a metre (3 ¼ feet) in height, following which Guédelon was opened to the public.[6] By June 2010, the great tower stood at 15 metres (49 ft).[8]

By 2014, the castle was attracting about 300,000 visitors annually,[9] and had annual revenue of about three million euros.[10] The castle is projected to be complete in 2023.[11]

^ a b Henley, Jon (30 July 1999). "King of a modern medieval castle". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 22 October 2017. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ "The story begins". Guédelon Castle. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ Minard & Folcher 2003, p. 57. ^ Willsher, Kim (6 June 2019). "A medieval castle in France could be Notre Dame's salvation". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 7 June 2019. ^ Durand 2005, p. 6. ^ a b c "Order of construction". Guédelon Castle. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ "Guédelon's building plans". Guédelon Castle. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ Schofield, Huge (30 June 2010). "France's new medieval castle". BBC News. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ Grant, Olly (18 November 2014). "A trip back in time at Guédelon Castle". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 5 December 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ Godeau, Élise (23 September 2013). "Guédelon, créneau pédago". Libération (in French). Archived from the original on 16 June 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2018. ^ Taylor, Alan (15 September 2016). "Building a 13th-Century Castle in the 21st Century". The Atlantic. Retrieved 28 May 2019.
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