Drée castle, from marshal to another marshal

The castleThe castle | ©Christophe.Finot / CC-BY-SA

Aah, Drée! Royal castle! Err, yes, almost… the house which used to belong to the marshal of France and duke of Lesdiguières Charles Blanchefort de Créqui! Let’s see that…

A family’s story

The fief was called at the beginning La Bazolle, belonging to the bailiff Girard de La Magdelaine de Ragny. Then it fell in the beginning of the 17th century to the future marshal of Créqui.

This chap was exceptionally rich, so, from 1620, he could launch the construction of his brand new castle: with a U shape, this one has a main building flanks by two perpendicular wings.

So, what about Charles de Créquy? He was François de Bonne, marshal of Lesdiguières’ son-in-law and heir! Do you remember?

We met Lesdiguières in his castle of Vizille (Isère). When this one died, there was a huge sum of money at stake: he was childless, so Créqui became the perfect heir…

He married Lesdiguières’ daughter, Madeleine de Lesdiguières. But this one died at an early age, so quickly, she had to be replaced!

So Créquy married Lesdiguières’ legitimate daughter, Françoise (born from his love affair with the pretty Marie Vignon). And Créqui’s son, François, would marry Lesdiguières’ other legitimate daughter…

A cannon ball in the belly

But let’s get back to Charles: he died at war in 1638, near Milan, during the war between king of France Louis XIII and his enemy Victor-Amédée of Savoy: that day, he was looking enemies with binoculars, when a cannon ball suddenly fell on him!

The ball pulled out a part of his belly and one of his arm. Oh, he died immediately… so that’s why Drée’s building work stopped, and finally ended at the end of the 17th century!