Dauphin Castle

Dauphin Castle, locally known as Château Dauphin, lies in the village of Pontgibaud, in the Puy-de-Dôme department in France.

The castle was founded in 1190 by the Count of Auvergne; Robert. He is also called Robert I or Robert IV, depending on the source, and had the surname Dauphin. This surname was a honorific title, it translates back to "dolphin" and Robert had a dolphin on his coat of arms. The castle, built out of volcanic rock, was meant to defend a bridge over the river Sioule.

In 1219 Dauphin Castle was besieged and taken by the troops of Philip II of France.

Gilbert Motier de La Fayette, Lord of Pontgibaud and Marshal of France, who had fought together with Joan of Arc, had the castle rebuilt in 1438. He enlarged the keep and strengthened the defenses turning the castle into a true fortress with 7 towers and fortified curtain walls forming a rectangular enclosure.

During the following centuries Dauphin Castle was besieged several times and went through the hands of several families.

In the early 17th century, when the castle was owned by the Daillon family, the medieval keep was considered too uncomfortable and unfashionable, so a new residence, called the "Louis XIII Castle" was built in front of it. To make room for this new structure one of the 7 towers and the curtain walls were demolished. The keep was turned into an agricultural building. Soon however the Daillons rose in importance and abandoned the castle for the court at Versailles.

In 1756 the castle was acquired by César I de Moré, Count of Chaliers. During the French Revolution, at the end of the 18th century, the entire site was damaged and ransacked, before being confiscated and sold as national property. Later it returned into the hands of the Moré de Pontgibaud family, Between 1886 and 1891 César III de Moré, Count of Pontgibaud, restored the keep, making it inhabitable again and finally demolished the 17th century 'château' in front of it in 1897.

 At present Dauphin Castle is still the property and residence of the descendants of César I de Moré. It can be visited for a fee. As the keep is the owner's private residence you only get to see 2 rooms on the ground floor during a guided tour. The rest of the castle and its gardens can be visited on your own. A very nice castle.


Gallery

Dauphin Castle

Dauphin Castle, locally known as Château Dauphin, lies in the village of Pontgibaud, in the Puy-de-Dôme department in France.

The castle was founded in 1190 by the Count of Auvergne; Robert. He is also called Robert I or Robert IV, depending on the source, and had the surname Dauphin. This surname was a honorific title, it translates back to "dolphin" and Robert had a dolphin on his coat of arms. The castle, built out of volcanic rock, was meant to defend a bridge over the river Sioule.

In 1219 Dauphin Castle was besieged and taken by the troops of Philip II of France.

Gilbert Motier de La Fayette, Lord of Pontgibaud and Marshal of France, who had fought together with Joan of Arc, had the castle rebuilt in 1438. He enlarged the keep and strengthened the defenses turning the castle into a true fortress with 7 towers and fortified curtain walls forming a rectangular enclosure.

During the following centuries Dauphin Castle was besieged several times and went through the hands of several families.

In the early 17th century, when the castle was owned by the Daillon family, the medieval keep was considered too uncomfortable and unfashionable, so a new residence, called the "Louis XIII Castle" was built in front of it. To make room for this new structure one of the 7 towers and the curtain walls were demolished. The keep was turned into an agricultural building. Soon however the Daillons rose in importance and abandoned the castle for the court at Versailles.

In 1756 the castle was acquired by César I de Moré, Count of Chaliers. During the French Revolution, at the end of the 18th century, the entire site was damaged and ransacked, before being confiscated and sold as national property. Later it returned into the hands of the Moré de Pontgibaud family, Between 1886 and 1891 César III de Moré, Count of Pontgibaud, restored the keep, making it inhabitable again and finally demolished the 17th century 'château' in front of it in 1897.

 At present Dauphin Castle is still the property and residence of the descendants of César I de Moré. It can be visited for a fee. As the keep is the owner's private residence you only get to see 2 rooms on the ground floor during a guided tour. The rest of the castle and its gardens can be visited on your own. A very nice castle.


Gallery