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Saturday, April 23, 2011

France 2010 - Day 13, Part 3 - Château d'Amboise

"If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything." - Mark Twain

***

France 2010
Day 13 - 14th October - Château d'Amboise
(Part 3)

Next we dropped by La Pagode de Chanteloup, a Chinese-esque Pagoda.

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Entrance information. 8,40€ for a faux Chinois pagoda? No thanks. No wonder it's not on the World Heritage List.

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At the end of the path, it didn't look promising, so I decided to skip it and move on to Amboise.

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Bridge over the Loire

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The River Loire


River panorama

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Sweet Sushi: Maki with Nutella, Maki with Spéculoos (spiced biscuit), Nigiri with Banana/Kiwi/Mango/Strawrberry/Raspberries???

The Château d'Amboise was quite surprising. In publicity images it appeared to stand out, as it would if you saw it coming across the bridge, but I came by another approach so it kind of creeped up on me and before I knew it it loomed over me.


What you're supposed to see

What I saw:

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Walls and Tower

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Ramparts


Ramparts

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Guy in fatigues with a dog with "EZdog" pouches

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Amboise street with "Bigot" shop (since 1913!)

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Books about love for food

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Cookies in a shop with very generous sampling portions

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Path up to the Château entrance

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Ramp up to the Château

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UNESCO plaque!
Whereas Brissac was only in the buffer zone of The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes, Amboise was recognised as a core site.


Amboise panorama
Most of the castle has been destroyed so there isn't that much left

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St Hubert Chapel - where Leonardo da Vinci's remains can be found

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Chapel entrance

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Tomb of Leonardo da Vinci

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Chapel altar

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Town of Amboise

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Town of Amboise and river

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Main Château building (what remains anyway)

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Grounds

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Town and river

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Flags in the wind

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Some house I was asked to take for some reason

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Pigeons on a roof

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A comparison of the Château at its greatest extent and what remains today
It was featured in "Les Plus excellents Bastiments de France" edition 1576/1577

Here is what the book says:

"Ce château est d’ancienneté fort renommé, comme l’un des principaux bâtiments de France, à cause de la fréquente demeure que faisaient les rois en ce lieu. Il est assis sur la rivière de Loire, en un lieu haut. Au pied d’icelui, est la ville et près d’icelle, y a une forêt assez belle. La vue de ce château s’étend sur ladite rivière, tant d’amont que d’aval, mais celle d’aval, je n’ai mémoire en avoir vu une telle. Car des terrasses qui environnent ce château en d’aucuns endroits, se voient aisément la ville de Tours et l’abbaye de Marmonstier [Marmoutier], encore qu’il y ait sept lieues de distance et encore beaucoup plus loin à perte de vue. Ce bâtiment n’est seulement élevé du côté de la rivière, mais aussi du côté de la ville, laquelle il tient à son commandement. Tout le circuit du bâtiment est fièrement bâti, et sur roc, au pied duquel, joignant la clôture, sont deux grosses tours de dix à onze toises de diamètre en dedans, ou environ, èsquelles tours les chariots avec chevaux peuvent monter du bas en haut jusques à la cour du château. Il y a en ce lieu plusieurs corps de logis. Ceux qui sont assis sur les clôtures sont bien bâtis, comme le logis de Vertus et autres. Mais il y en a par dedans qui ne sont que de cloisonnages. Depuis quelque temps, a été fait quelques corps de bâtiments neufs répondant sur le jardin avec d’autres, répondant sur la cour du milieu. Le jardin est un peu étroit pour la grande longueur qu’il a, lequel est fermé dans la clôture du château. Au milieu du lieu, sur la première cour, est situé et bâti un temple d’ordre moderne, pareillement une petite chapelle élevée et assise en saillie outre les clôtures du lieu, du côté de la ville.

Il y a un jeu de paume en l’une des cours, pris dans terre comme en un fossé. Au pied du château et bout de la ville est un pont de pierre sur la rivière, sur lequel sont bâties quelques maisons particulières."

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"Charles VIII's Death at the Château d'Amboise
The celebrated chronicler Philippe de Commynes recounted the details of this sombre event. On 7 April 1498, the king with his queen, Anne of Brittany, went to the Haquelebac gallery, overlooking the moat... to watch a game of real tennis. On the way, Charles bumped his head on a door frame. He died a few hours later, aged only 28."

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Man Gargoyle

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Late Gothic fireplace

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Renissance fireplace

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Council Chamber

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Window

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Information on the furniture

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Chair

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Chest
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