Montbrun castle: a treasure and a Lionheart

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The castle - ©Jonathan.chapon / CC-BY-SA The castle - ©Jonathan.chapon / CC-BY-SA
Montbrun castle Castle Richard Lionheart Legend Treasure

Montbrun: the story

Aymeric Brun put up a fortress in 1179, which received the name of Mont-Brun, Mons bruni ("Brown hill"). It was in fact raised on a hill... the castle is a 40 metres quadrilateral with a square tower on each corner.

The English burnt the building during Hundred Years War, then Pierre de Montbrun, bishop of Limoges in 1426, rebuilt the current fortress, a huge quadrilateral flanked by round towers. One of them includes the former square keep of Aymeric Brun.

What’s next? Protestants tried to besiege walls in 1569, in vain. Montbrun resisted! Meanwhile, owners succeeded one another: Isabelle de Montbrun, the sole heiress, sold her estate to de Caussade family in 1566, then fell to the de Lambertie, then the de Maumont. During French Revolution, Montbrun was entirely plundered and divided into several parcels. The archives were burnt in middle of the courtyard...

Montbrun’s treasure

14th century… the Hundred Years War destroyed all the area, castle of Montbrun included… The legend says that near the smouldering ruins, someone hid a treasure: the famous lords of Montbrun's gold. But not a common treasure… an unlimited one!

The lady of the place had just to say few words, and two donkeys suddenly appeared, loaded down with bags of gold. The treasure was laid down on the ruins, so a brand new castle was raised instead. And donkeys magically disappeared … until the next time!

The Lion’s death

Since we’re talking about a treasure… Few kilometres away from Montbrun, on the borders of Limousin, Périgord and Charente, is the remain of the castle of Châlus. And what happened in Châlus? King of England Richard Lionheart died there, during the battle of Châlus, in 1199… killed by an enemy arrow shot from a tower!

Err, yes, but is there a link with the treasure? Yes, because Richard thought that a fabulous gold was hidden here, somewhere in the stone. So, that’s why… Maybe Richard died in Montbrun, not in Châlus! Because it was Montbrun’s gold he was looking for.

And also!