North of Soissons, discover the impressive remains of the Château de Coucy!
The castle of a power family. In 1214, Enguerrand III, Lord of Coucy, was one of the victors at the Battle of Bouvines, near Lille, the first major European battle which cemented the burgeoning sense of national pride in France. In the 14th century, Enguerrand VII of Coucy, a great diplomat, transformed it into a sumptuous palace.
Inspiring decoration. Sculptures of the Nine "Preuses" (or female Worthies) on the monumental fireplace, built around 1400 by Louis of Orleans at Coucy, are the first known representation of this iconographic theme. A drawing of them, published by Androuet du Cerceau in the 16th century, gave the 19th-century architect Viollet-le-Duc inspiration for the fireplace in the great hall at the Château de Pierrefonds.
Four centuries of destruction. The castle was dismantled in 1652 and used as a stone quarry until it was bought by King Louis-Philippe in 1829, then by the French state in 1848. Several architects in turn, including Viollet-le-Duc, strove to preserve the ruins. During the First World War, the four towers and the keep were destroyed by German forces.
To ensure the safety of our visitors, the monument is strictly applying the security measures decided by the french authorities.
The monument is fully opened.