Day Four: Chinon Fortress

Disclaimer: Editing will be done once I am back home.

The castle in Chinon has been a place of excitement for years.  It was mainly developed by Henry II after he took it from his brother (who had rebelled twice against him.) It was also one of Henry and Eleanor’s favorite places to hold court; they were often in residence in Chinon.  It would also be the place that Henry would die while at odds with his son Richard.  Years later, after Richard passed, his brother John would lose Chinon to the French.

You may recognize John as “the bad king” from the legend of Robin Hood. While John could be a monster, his character was much deeper than the typical “bad guy” in the movies.  He was, in his defense, given a country to rule that had been on the edge of bankruptcy raising money for Richard’s crusade and subsequent required random to free him from a German prison.    Although you will learn more about John in later posts, the import point to focus on was mentioned above: he lost Chinon.

Chinon was also used by Philip II to imprison the Knights Templar when the king was looking for a way out of paying his loans to the Templar knights.

Charles VII would also fortify Chinon and use it frequently.

I easily could have spend hours wandering the fortress; suffice it to say that in the two hours I did spend was used to make sure I climbed every possible step and passage and leave no room uncovered.  My overactive imagination was on overtime, watching wisps of ghosts wandering the grounds and the hearing the clank and commotion of the activity in the keep.

These photos show how the fortress changed over a few centuries.

I curse the love that caused this destruction of the castle.


Yes, I did go down the stairs…


And if you CLICK HERE to see the view from the ramparts.

Here you can see the slits that allowed archers to shoot arrows at the enemy over a wide swath of ground yet kept them relatively safe.


I personally would like one of these at school, for show of course!


The view was fantastic!

Charles VII got to take advantage of this beauty of a fire place in his bedroom:


I REALLY NEED to convince the Admin at my school to have kids create a few trebuchets as an enrichment project! It would cover history, math, language arts, and science all in one! We have a few places we can attack to try them out…


An inner court yard. I descended the tower steps to learn at the bottom that the door was bolted shut.


A selfie here and there is always lots of fun!


And as awesome as the fortress was and is, nature always wants to take over.


Good bye, dear Chinon! I love you!


Next post:

The abbey where Henry, Eleanor, and two of their children were buried.

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