Éminence Rouge

The topics of this blog are Armand-Jean du Plessis, Cardinal Duke of Richelieu, and the IDEAL CITY built on his command next to his magnificent CHÂTEAU on the borders of Touraine, Anjou and Poitou, in France.

Tuesday, 2 March 2021

M.Milon's drone photos of the Cité Cardinale


View looking west towards Loudun.

The Orangerie in the parc de Richelieu.

The moated site of the original Château de Richelieu looking SW.

Merci à M.Milon - gazette du Richelais

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

NW Corner Tower - The new floor is laid

 The new floor is composed of red fired clay carreaux (rectangular), rather than tomettes (hexagonal), being laid here by the masonry firm Miguel Dutemple. They are traditionally laid tight up to each other, without lime mortar pointing. At the end they are swept over with sharp sand which fills all cracks such as are left. The tightness and depth of the tiles keep them all firmly in place, the more so if the edges are constrained at the walls, as in this particular case.


entreprises de maçonnerie
Sarrazinière, 86420 PRINÇAY

Téléphone 05 49 98 50 90
Mobile 06 21 55 63 74 
Téléphone 09 66 43 07 60


Wednesday, 20 January 2021

The north-west tower now receives its inner staircase

After many, many years, it is now again possible to reach the upper floor of this 1630s guard tower. Restoration work continues, even across Covid-19 pandemic year 2020-21.  

Although formerly being in a dilapidated condition, this building is probably the most authentic piece of seventeenth-century construction work in the entire Ville Idéale.  This NW corner of the town lay at the extremity of a nunnery that, from the first, served the cardinal duc's New Town. Its ecclesiastical ownership prevented encroachments into the moat beyond by private dwellings or gardens as elsewhere on the three other sides, and allowed the structure to be uniquely preserved in its original format.  It must have been part restored in the 19th or 20th century as can be seen in the existing condition of the roof and chimney.

The restoration work has recreated the simple utilitarian character of this defensive building whose real purpose was more symbolic and stylistic than military.



Wednesday, 13 January 2021

The Dôme in the parc - part of the chateau's original horse 'manège'

Originally this last remaining part of the château was a gateway through to the equestrian exercise area, and was used as a covered horse training hall (or manège).

It was flanked, east and west, by other matching buildings that together enclosed the inner arrival court.

From the east through the trees

The avenue of trees from town to château in autumn

from the central axis of château's symmetry, looking south.


in Covid-19 lockdown - January 20221

Tuesday, 8 December 2020

The north-west corner guard tower receives its new windows - Vincent Delmas

General view across the moat

a main window

the North oriel window

four new casements painted 'oxblood'


Entreprise DELMAS
ZI Richelieu-Champigny-sur-Veude
3 rue de la Lèguerie

tel: 02 47 95 30 89 
email: lmvd@wanadoo.fr


Sunday, 22 November 2020

Another blu-sky autumn view

thanks Ali K-B

Thursday, 19 November 2020

The statue at the entrance to the parc & the restored Dôme in autumn.

Statue of the Cardinal-Duc by Ramey, formerly on the Pont Louis XVI in Paris

An autumnal view of the 'Dôme'; last remnant of the former château de Richelieu.


Wednesday, 11 November 2020

The parc de Richelieu in autumnal Covid-19 Lockdown


From the cross-axis point back to the town

Up a wind swept side allée

Next to the former castle site, looking West

A walkway bridge under the plane trees

Along the main canal

The newly restored 'Dôme', a former manège hall

thanks Jane, Malachy amd Ali


Thursday, 8 October 2020

Thursday, 16 July 2020

The new swan family in the park

Seven cygnets have been born to the pair of swans that live on the moat of the former Château de Richelieu. At present all survive.


Saturday, 23 May 2020

Mayor Martegoutte - 23 May 2020-25

Mayor Martegoutte with former Mayor Novelli