Allinges-Neuf Castle

The castles of Allinges, locally known as Châteaux d'Allinges, lie on a ridge above the village of the same name, in the Haute-Savoie department in France.

There are 2 castles, only some 150 m apart from each other. The oldest is the north one; Allinges-Vieux Castle. Here I describe the younger south one; Allinges-Neuf Castle, locally known as Château-Neuf d'Allinges.

Allinges-Neuf Castle was built in the 10th century by Rudolph II, King of Burgundy. At the same time Rudolph also had Allinges-Vieux Castle restored. Like Allinges-Vieux, Allinges-Neuf consisted of an upper enclosure linked to a castral village. Almost a century later Allinges-Neuf was restored by Rudolph III of Burgundy.

Allinges-Neuf Castle belonged to a branch of the Allinges family distinct from that in possession of Allinges-Vieux. In the course of the 12th century it passed into the hands of the Counts of Savoy, while Allinges-Vieux fell to the Lords of Faucigny at the end of the 12th century. When, in 1236, Peter II, Count of Savoy, married Agnes of Faucigny both castles were united again.

After the death of Agnes, in 1268, she left Allinges-Vieux Castle to her daughter instead of her husband Peter. Thus both castles were separated again and a succession feud between the County of Savoy and the Dauphins of Viennois, heirs to the Faucigny possessions, caused the garrisons of both castles to be in almost permanent conflict with each other. In 1272 Allinges-Neuf Castle suffered severe damage from siege engines which was repaired a decade later. In 1291, 1292 and 1302 it was again damaged by siege engines installed in Allinges-Vieux Castle. In 1305 both castles suffered from violent bombardments. The Viennois fruitlessly besieged Allinges-Neuf for 12 days in 1308, causing severe damages again.

Hostilities between the 2 castles continued until 1355 when Faucigny was incorporated into the Savoyard state by the Treaty of Paris. This fact diminished the importance of Allinges-Neuf Castle and by the end of the 14th century it was abandoned; the inhabitants of the castral village moved to the plain below the castles.

The people of Bern took both castles in 1536 and occupied them until 1567. Allinges-Neuf Castle was fortified and garrisoned again in 1570 by the Baron d'Hermance for the Duke of Savoy. In the process the baron tore down all the remaining structures of the castral village. In 1594-95 St. Francis de Sales stayed for 7 months at the castle, fruitlessly trying to return the surrounding population back to the Roman Catholic faith after they had turned Protestant during the Bernese occupation.

During the Franco-Savoyard War (1600-1601) Allinges-Neuf Castle surrendered to the French and in 1630 it is again occupied by the troops of Louis XIII of France, for a year. In 1690, during the Nine Years' War, both castles were occupied for the last time. Both castles were finally dismantled in 1703, during the War of the Spanish Succession, by Victor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy, threatened by the troops of Louis XIV of France.

In 1832 the ruins of both castles were bought by the Bishop of Annecy who later built a house for the Missionaries of St. Francis de Sales in the ruin of Allinges-Neuf Castle. The missionaries turned it into a center of Salesian pilgrimage and are still owners of it today.

At present Allinges-Neuf Castle is freely accessible. A nice castle ruin which, together with the other castle, makes for a nice visit. Also visit the nice Salesian chapel equipped with an 11th century Romanesque fresco.


Gallery

Allinges-Neuf Castle

The castles of Allinges, locally known as Châteaux d'Allinges, lie on a ridge above the village of the same name, in the Haute-Savoie department in France.

There are 2 castles, only some 150 m apart from each other. The oldest is the north one; Allinges-Vieux Castle. Here I describe the younger south one; Allinges-Neuf Castle, locally known as Château-Neuf d'Allinges.

Allinges-Neuf Castle was built in the 10th century by Rudolph II, King of Burgundy. At the same time Rudolph also had Allinges-Vieux Castle restored. Like Allinges-Vieux, Allinges-Neuf consisted of an upper enclosure linked to a castral village. Almost a century later Allinges-Neuf was restored by Rudolph III of Burgundy.

Allinges-Neuf Castle belonged to a branch of the Allinges family distinct from that in possession of Allinges-Vieux. In the course of the 12th century it passed into the hands of the Counts of Savoy, while Allinges-Vieux fell to the Lords of Faucigny at the end of the 12th century. When, in 1236, Peter II, Count of Savoy, married Agnes of Faucigny both castles were united again.

After the death of Agnes, in 1268, she left Allinges-Vieux Castle to her daughter instead of her husband Peter. Thus both castles were separated again and a succession feud between the County of Savoy and the Dauphins of Viennois, heirs to the Faucigny possessions, caused the garrisons of both castles to be in almost permanent conflict with each other. In 1272 Allinges-Neuf Castle suffered severe damage from siege engines which was repaired a decade later. In 1291, 1292 and 1302 it was again damaged by siege engines installed in Allinges-Vieux Castle. In 1305 both castles suffered from violent bombardments. The Viennois fruitlessly besieged Allinges-Neuf for 12 days in 1308, causing severe damages again.

Hostilities between the 2 castles continued until 1355 when Faucigny was incorporated into the Savoyard state by the Treaty of Paris. This fact diminished the importance of Allinges-Neuf Castle and by the end of the 14th century it was abandoned; the inhabitants of the castral village moved to the plain below the castles.

The people of Bern took both castles in 1536 and occupied them until 1567. Allinges-Neuf Castle was fortified and garrisoned again in 1570 by the Baron d'Hermance for the Duke of Savoy. In the process the baron tore down all the remaining structures of the castral village. In 1594-95 St. Francis de Sales stayed for 7 months at the castle, fruitlessly trying to return the surrounding population back to the Roman Catholic faith after they had turned Protestant during the Bernese occupation.

During the Franco-Savoyard War (1600-1601) Allinges-Neuf Castle surrendered to the French and in 1630 it is again occupied by the troops of Louis XIII of France, for a year. In 1690, during the Nine Years' War, both castles were occupied for the last time. Both castles were finally dismantled in 1703, during the War of the Spanish Succession, by Victor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy, threatened by the troops of Louis XIV of France.

In 1832 the ruins of both castles were bought by the Bishop of Annecy who later built a house for the Missionaries of St. Francis de Sales in the ruin of Allinges-Neuf Castle. The missionaries turned it into a center of Salesian pilgrimage and are still owners of it today.

At present Allinges-Neuf Castle is freely accessible. A nice castle ruin which, together with the other castle, makes for a nice visit. Also visit the nice Salesian chapel equipped with an 11th century Romanesque fresco.


Gallery