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.

Wednesday 31 August 2011

Careless beauty and decay

a grand piano nobile

a humble dwelling for the lower classes
The elegance of the style of the reign of Louis XIII might be exemplified by these two almost derelict buildings in Richelieu's town...

More details of the statue of the cardinal...

With this second post on the subject, we take a bit more time with the statue of the cardinal duc, Armand-Jean du Plessis, the founder of so many French activities and organisations that have endured to our day.  The statue is located on the place that sits between his château's domainal parc to the south and his model town to the north.
He poses giving a cardinal's blessing to the viewer with his right hand, while holding the document of foundation of the Académie Française (dated as 1635) in his left.

the all-seeing, all-knowing statesman

The statue has several 'credits' attached to it.
the sculptor's credit 1828
the relocation of the statue in 1932

the Second Regiment of the Marines

dedications from the Second Regiment of the Marines

  • The sculptor - C(laude) Ramey, père - Dijon, dated 1828
  • The inauguration of the statue in Richelieu 17 July 1932, probably as part of the bequest of the domainal parc to the Sorbonne (of which Armand-Jean was the first rector, and in whose chapel he rests to this day) by the eigth and last duke.  It had formerly been located on the Pont Neuf of Henri IV in Paris for the period 1828-1932.
  • Two plaques of the Second Regiment of the Marines to their first Chef de Corps, one from 1932(?) and the other from the Lieutenants of the Second of the Marine, dated 9 December 1995 to their founding 'father'.  The old strategist and pupil of Pluvinel's equestreian & military academy is not forgotten!
the cardinal up closer

the foundation of the Academie Française


Tuesday 23 August 2011

Estate agents - when the music stops...

There were, until recently, three estate agents in the Place du Marché in Richelieu who all offered properties to visitors and locals.
Thiot was there first on the northern side of the square; they offered in addition restoration services to those who had fallen in love with one of Touraine's tumbledown delights.  But the years rolled on, and M. et Mme. Thiot have gone to their retirement. The old agency is now unoccupied and sad.
The second property agent, well known to the Abbé Henri Proust, Touraine Immo, seems to have closed up shop, again leaving an unoccupied office, this time on the eastern face of the square.
Then, and thirdly, the shop of Archard Immobilier on the eastern side, this time run by two rosbifs, and reflecting the strong UK interest in French country properties in the 2000-2010 period, has closed, maybe because of the financial crisis has taken the heat out of the sales of upmarket properties.

But nature and commerce abhorr a vacuum and a new property agent, Richelieu Immobilier, has now sprung up to meet demand.
Below pictures of their new office and the information in the window.

The new office in Route de Loudun

Details and contacts

The town's notaire, Maître Pierre Gravel continues to sell properties, as is normal in the French property system, in addition to supervising on behalf of the French State the transfer of most local property ownerships from seller to buyer.