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Chateau de Birontourist information guide
Address: 221 bis route d'Angouleme, 24000
Tel: +33 (0)5 53 06 30 94
Opening Times: Daily; not Mons in winter | Admission Charge
Chateau de Biron is situated in a highly strategic position on the border of Agenais and Perigord which means its views of fields and farmhouses stretch for miles around.
At the beginning of the XIIIth-century the Catholics and Cathars fought bitterly over Chateau de Biron and it was Simon de Montfort who put an end to the Cathar's crusade in 1214. Chateau de Biron didn't fair much better during the Hundred Years War (which started in 1345) with possession of its lands again the cause of war in the region between the French and English. It was during this period that the English tower was damaged by a fire.
Chateau de Biron was bought by the Gontaut brothers at the end of the XVth-century. It was then that Chateau de Biron took on its Renaissance/late Gothic style. This work continued until the beginning of the Wars of Religion.
Armand de Gontaut, Marshal of France, served Henry IVth and was killed at the battle of Epernay. His son, Charles inherited the castle but chose to fight with Spain against France. His efforts were in vain and he was finally beheaded.
Chateau de Biron remained empty until XVIIIth-century when the King finally reinstated the Gontaut family status. The decoration and renovation works were finally completed.
Chateau de Biron's architecture is impressive as it spans many ages. It boasts a XIIth-century donjon, a two-storey chapel, Renaissance apartments, vaulted kitchens and a fine loggia with double columns opening onto a stone staircase (similar to those at Versailles). It's no surprise that Chateau de Biron was the chosen setting for the film, Les Visiteurs II.