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A presentation on the chateaux of the Loire Valley.

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  1. 1. Chateaux of the Loire Valley<br />Megan Sulewski<br />EDU 290<br />
  2. 2. The Loire Valley<br />Located in Northwest/Central France<br />Middle stretch of the Loire River<br />Continental climate, highly fertile<br />Abundance of fruit orchards and vineyards<br />Preferred location for the construction of chateaux, or castles, for French nobility<br />
  3. 3. The Renaissance<br />The French Renaissance began in the early 16th century<br />Flourishing art, music and extravagant architecture<br />King Francois I was an advocate for the embellishment of French culture<br />Organized the construction of several Renaissance chateaux in the Loire Valley<br />Francois I, courtesy of Wikipedia<br />
  4. 4. Azay-le-Rideau<br />Constructed between 1515 and 1527<br />Located in the department of Indre-et-Loire<br />Its foundations rise out of the Indre River, giving it the appearance of an island<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  5. 5. Inside Azay-le-Rideau<br />Gothic-style ceilings<br />Renaissance stained glass<br />Photos by Megan Sulewski<br />
  6. 6. More fun facts<br />Azay-le-Rideau is on the Unesco World Heritage list.<br />The castle is decorated with the furniture and tapestries of the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. <br />Azay-le-Rideau retains a somewhat defensive appearance, typical of the chateaux-forts that had been the dominant form of architecture until the French Renaissance.<br />
  7. 7. Chenonceau<br />Chenonceau was constructed between 1515 and 1521<br />Its signature arches cross the river Cher<br />After King Francois I’s death, King Henri II offered the chateau to his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, as a gift<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  8. 8. Inside Chenonceau<br />The Great Hall<br />An elaborate chapel<br />The great hall was once a hospital for wounded soldiers in WWI<br />Photos by Megan Sulewski<br />
  9. 9. The Gardens of Chenonceau<br />Chenonceau boasts two gardens designed in the typical French style<br />Highly geometric and organized<br />The two gardens were designed in honor of two important women<br />The king’s wife<br />The king’s mistress<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  10. 10. Chambord<br />Constructed by King Francois I between 1519 and 1547<br />Technically never completed<br />It is the largest chateau in the Loire Valley<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  11. 11. Inside Chambord<br />The King’s Chambers<br />The many turrets of Chambord<br />Photos by Megan Sulewski<br />
  12. 12. Chambord fun facts<br />Chateau Chambord was supposedly the inspiration for the castle in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. <br />Chambord served as the King’s hunting lodge.<br />The chateau has an enormous double-helix staircase, so the King’s mistress and wife may ascend or descend, and not cross one another.<br />Leonardo da Vinci is said to have designed many features of the chateau, including the staircase.<br />
  13. 13. Architectural Progressions<br />The elaborate designs of the Renaissance chateaux of the Loire Valley are big departures from the chateaux forts which preceded them<br />A chateau fort is a chateau that served as a city’s defense.<br />The chateau d’Angers (at right) is an example of a chateau fort.<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  14. 14. Versailles and French absolutism<br />The French Renaissance came to an end with the rise of Louis XIV to power<br />Beginning of absolutism<br />Louis XIV constructed Versailles as a display of his wealth and power<br />Photo by Megan Sulewski<br />
  15. 15. Sources<br />Bezbakh, Pierre. Petit Larousse de l’histoire de France, 2009.<br />Photo of Francois I from Wikipedia:<br />Photos of chateaux and gardens are property of Megan Sulewski, unless otherwise noted.<br />