Amboise, France


"The childhood home of Charles VIII and the final resting place of the great Leonardo da Vinci, upmarket Amboise is an elegant provincial town, pleasantly perched along the southern bank of the Loire and overlooked by its fortified 15th-century chateau.

"Sprawling across a rocky escarpment with panoramic views of the river and surrounding countryside, [Chateau Royal d’Amboise] presented a formidable prospect to would-be attackers, but in fact saw little military action; it was more often used as a weekend getaway by the royals at nearby Blois ... Today, just a few of the original 15th- and 16th-century structures survive, notably the Flamboyant Gothic wing and the Chapelle St-Hubert, a small chapel dedicated to the patron saint of hunting and believed to be the final resting place of da Vinci. The interior highlights include a guards’ room, a lovely belvedere overlooking the river, and a vaulted Council Chamber decorated with the initials of Charles VIII and his wife, Anne de Bretagne. Charles died suddenly in 1498 after hitting his head on a lintel while playing jeu de paume (an early form of tennis); the widowed Anne was later forced to remarry the new king, Louis XII. From 1848 to 1852, Abd el-Kader, the leader of the Algerian resistance against French colonialism, was imprisoned here with his family and entourage...

"Leonardo da Vinci installed himself in the grand manor house at Le Clos Lucé in 1516 on the invitation of Francois I, who was greatly enamoured with the Italian Renaissance. Already 64 by the time he arrived, da Vinci seems to have spent his time at Clos Lucé sketching, tinkering and dreaming up new contraptions: the house and landscaped grounds house scale models of many of his inventions, including a protoautomobile, tank, parachute, hydraulic turbine and even a primitive helicopter."    [Lonely Planet France, —Aug 2010]

Chateau d'Amboise (1, 2)

Close up

Evening view (1, 2, 3, 4)

After sunset (1, 2, 3)

Bridge over Loire

Woman on a date

Amboise town (1, 2)

View from the chateau (1, 2, 3)

Chateau walls

Chateau d'Amboise

Chateau d'Amboise

Visitors

Chateau d'Amboise (original plan)

Chateau d'Amboise (1, 2)

Another view of chateau

Chateau rooftop

Chapelle St-Hubert (more)

Here lies Da Vinci

Stained glass

Chapel interior (1, 2)

Knight's armor

Hall inside chateau

Fireplace

Use of perspective

Bedchamber

Room in the chateau

Room in the chateau

Room in the chateau

Le Clos Lucé

Home of Leornardo Da Vinci for last 3 years of his life

Da Vinci's bedchamber

Da Vinci's study

Once the great man's studio

Renaissance Great Hall

The Kitchen

Bacchus on a barrel (18th cent.)

Leonardo's garden

Leonardo's garden

Main building

Entrance to Le Clos Lucé

Rue Victor Hugo

Rue Victor Hugo

Eglise Notre Dame du Bouts des Ponts

Siblings in conversation

Inside the Eglise (more)

Mother and child

Bigot since 1913 (bell tower)

Condom vending machine

Centuries old wood lined facades

Island in the Loire

Loire river (1, 2)

Decisions, decisions

Modern cave dwellings

American fries!

Roman era ruins (more)

Remains of a wall from 4th cent. BCE Gaul (more)

Appetizer

Main course

Dessert

Dessert

 



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