A little history of Arcelot castle

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The castle - ©W.Mechelke / WikimediaCommons / CC-BY-SA The castle - ©W.Mechelke / WikimediaCommons / CC-BY-SA
Arcelot castle Castle French Revolution

Brand new!

The story or Arcelot began in the 17th century, when the land fell to Alphonse de Guéribout: Arcelot was raised to a marquisate in 1674… Then, Arcelot fell to the family de Verchère, in the beginning of the 18th century.

A family of members of Parliament, well know in the area… It existed here an old primitive fortress. But whoa, pretty damaged! Philibert Verchère, the one who bought the estate, re-raised a brand new castle next to the old one.

Stucco and marbleized things

For want of money or time, we don’t know, the building work was never completed! The architect just raised the little detached houses framing the main building… a main building only begun in 1761! Burgundian architect Thomas Dumorcey raised it for Philibert’s grandson.

The building work ended in 1765: we have here a nice neoclassical castle, the first one ever raised of Burgundy! Verchère, of course, fitted out gorgeous interiors: stucco, marbleized decoration… a decoration made by Italian and German artists.

All alone!

But the French Revolution turned up… The owner’s daughter, at that time, was Louise Archères d'Arcelot. She was 11, in 1792. Her dad and her brother took to their heel, smelling the troubles coming… They ran away in Lyon, letting the poor Louise all alone in Arcelot! Alone with her maid, alone without her mum who died when she was a baby…

So, she stayed here, in those silent rooms… She stayed 4 years! Once a week, she had to go to Dijon, to justify about her situation to the Revolutionary court, to show that she really lived in the castle. If not, Arcelot would be seize!

Little pleasures...

So, Arcelot wasn’t sold! In the beginning of the 19th century, the landscaper Jean-Marie Morel designed the big park flanks by its pond. Do you know this Morel? The architect of the king’s menus plaisirs (″the royal entertainment″, in French Court)!

He landscaped Ermenonville and Malmaison’s gardens. Anyway, Arcelot stayed in the Verchère family… And in 1814, during the France’s campaign, the Austrian emperor François II and the tzar Alexander I even spent a night in the castle...

The visit of Arcelot

Well worth seeing: the chapel and the living-room, who kept their original decoration made in 1765 by the German Reuscher. In the living-room, whoa: everything is marbleized… except the chimney!

Outside: don’t miss the huge park (45 ha) and the 6 hectares pond, with in the middle, a little island flanks by a pagoda.

And also!