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The Chateau of Chambord in one of the loveliest Renaissance buildings in the Valley of the Loire. Chambord, château, park, and village in the department of Loire-et-Cher in central France. The château of Chambord was a retreat for French kings, especially Louis XIV It was under his auspices that French dramatist Molière's Monsieur de Pourceaugnac and Le bourgeois Gentilhomme were first produced there.

Building of the château was begun by Francis I in 1519, and was completed in 1547. Florentine artist Leonardo da Vinci paid a short visit to the building during its construction and added a few embellishments to it. The structure, containing 440 rooms, 365 fireplace, 13 great staircases, and stables to accommodate 1200 horses, stands in a park surrounded by a wall of 22 miles in circumference. 1800 men worked on the chateau.

The archives offers us no information as to the name of the architect but an analysis of the structure reveals a profound influence of Leonardo's thought and a extremely close tie to some of the projects by Domenico da Cortona, and Italian architect.

The staircase is related to a project by Leonardo which consisted of four distinct superimposed flights of stairs, in order words, just as many stairs as quarters and arms of the cross of the castle. It is therefore likely that Leonardo da Vinci staircase, which may have been conceived for Chambord, was then simplified when it was built by the master masons of the building yard.

The spiral staircase derives from a medieval concept. It goes far beyond it in its unique division into two separate flights with numerous openings on the arms of the corridors. A tribute to the former medieval French tradition is to be found in the presence of powerful cylindrical towers at the corners of the keep. The top of the stairs leads to the large terraces of the castle.

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Nice post! Simple but very good.
Jun 30, 2011 05:20 am

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