#25 & #84 Château d'Etampes
Essonne, France
This is NOT an official Lego site

The wonderful donjon at Etampes is a large quatrefoil-shaped tower, four stories tall. The basement, great hall ceilings, and roof were originally supported by a central pier. The authentic entrance to the keep is placed midway between the basement and first floors, and was reached by a drawbridge to a causeway projecting from the curtain wall. Mural staircases lead left from the entrance down to the basement, and right up to the great hall, but there is also a doorway straight ahead. The unsuspecting intruder, charging forward, would plunge 12 feet to the stone floor below. Simple yet effective. Ouch.
The photographs above are courtesy of Prof. Bernard Gineste at the Collège J. E. Guettard in Etampes, France. He is a recent settler in Etampes but already an enthusiastic citizen. The sad state of the donjon and the minimal remains of the rest of the huge castle (see drawing below) is due in large part to the citizenry tearing down their own castle in 1589. During the Hundred Years War and the Religious Wars between the Protestants and the Catholics, every belligerent for many miles around attacked the castle and usually devastated the village in the process. Finally King Henry IV granted the citizens request to "slight" the castle, but the result was loss of Etampes' power but the Etampois remained in danger for two hundred more years - and the gradual deterioration of the town resulted. T. E. Lawrence [of Arabia], when visiting the ruin of Château d'Etampes in the early 20th century, called the castle "perhaps the most astonishing production of the late twelfth century".

Photos of the Lego Models
Built June 1989 and rebuilt March 2002
South View
1989 Model
Aerial View
of the roofless creation
SSE View
of 2002 Model
Southwest View
of 2002 Model
Closeup of entrance
causeway & drawbridge
Detail of the roof with
chimneys and turret

Build Your Own
South Elevation
of 1989 Keep
Top Down Plan
of 1989 model
Southeast Elevation
of 2002 Keep & Inner Ward
Top Down Plan
of 2002 model

Other Etampes pages:
None are in English. If you have a link to another Château d'Etampes page, please
mail me.
At this Dutch site, it's probably easiest to click on "France" then on "
Château d'Étampes"

For those of you fluent in French, Prof. Gineste has created a delightful rendition of my page at:

Return to the
main castle page.

Castles created by Robert Carney
Page designed by
Anne Sullivan and Robert Carney
Page maintained by
Robert Carney