The Château de Bridoré is an ancient fortress that stands in the French commune of Bridoré, in the department of Indre-et-Loire, in the Centre-Val de Loire region.
The Château de Bridoré is a medieval military fortress (14th-15th century), with a defence system unique in France (four caponiers), steam baths, latrines on all floors, a stone sewage system, steam rooms, ditches, a food preservation system and a 30-metre high keep.
In 1590, the castle was lined with false braces on which the four caponiers, which are only visible at the top of the counterscarp, were built in the ditch.
Bridoré is a commune in the canton and arrondissement of Loches, 14km from Loches and 54km from Tours. The commune was formerly part of the canton of Grand-Pressigny.
The civil registers of Bridoré start in 1020.
In the 6th century it is assumed that there was a monastery in Cerçay, or Saint-Martin de Cerçay (now part of the parish of Bridoré).
The inhabitants of Oizay, Saint-Martin de Cerçay and the Chapelle Saint-Hippolyte owed the castle a watch and guard. The fiefs of Rigny, Villedomain, La Mardelle and Rouvray were under Bridoré.
In the 10th and 11th centuries, the lords of Bridoré owned the fief of Rangé, which was under the jurisdiction of the archbishop of Tours.
The lord of Bridoré was required to attend the coronation of the archbishop of Tours. During this ceremony, he had to act as an usher to the prelate and serve him water. For this duty, he received the silver ewer he had used.
From 1200 The first lords
In the first half of the 13th century, Josbert I of Sainte-Maure, Pressigny and Nouâtre, husband of Agnès de Vendôme, was lord of Bridoré, and after him their youngest son, the marshal Renaud I of Précigny, who died in 1270 in Tunisia during the eighth crusade.
The great-granddaughter of the latter, Marguerite de Précigny (daughter of Renaud III, son of Renaud II, himself son of Marshal Renaud), and her husband Godemar I de Linières, widower of Agnès de Sancerre who died in 1340, became lords of Bridoré.
One of their children, Florie de Linières, who died in 1406, passed Bridoré to her first husband, Jean I le Meingre, the 1st Marshal Boucicaut (died in 1368) and then temporarily to her second husband, the knight Maurice Mauvinet, who died around 1375.
1475 - 1614 Bridoré under Imbert de Batarnay
The dauphin Louis XI, a great hunter, saw a young man of 17 hunting a falcon with great skill. This encounter was to decide the future of Imbert de Batarnay (1438 - 1523): Imbert de Batarnay, Count of Fezensac, Baron of Bouchage and Authun, Lord of Montrésor, Moulins in Berry, ambassador to Spain and Chamberlain to King Louis XI bought Bridoré at the end of the Hundred Years War.
He was advisor to Kings Louis XI, Charles VIII, Louis XII and François I.
The Château de Bridoré today
Sold as national property during the Revolution, it remains in the same family until today.
The Château de Bridoré was classified as a historical monument by decree of 19 January 1911, restored by the painters Simone Lefèvre (1913-1983) and Pierre Mouveau (1905-2004), then by one of their sons, Vincent Mouveau (1943-1993).
Since Vincent's death, his son, Pierre-Alexandre Mouveau, has been responsible for the conservation and restoration of the site. He has also carried out a major renovation project in 2021.
Source: Château de Bridoré
2, rue du Professeur Debré 37600 Bridoré