TopicSciences and discovery
DepartureMONTMIRAIL (51)

There was a lot of arguments about the etymology and the meaning of the name "Montmirail" because we can find it wrote "Mons mirellus", "Mons mirabilis" or "Montmiral" in the 12th century's charts.
At the XIII century the name "Montmirel" appears, at the 14th "Montmirail-en-Brie".

The castle of Montmirail


The castle of Montmirail had become the property of the The Rochefoucauld. One of the girls of the Marquis of Louvois, the first land lord, had married the viscount of La Rochefoucauld, future Duke of Doudeauville and Minister of the fine arts of Charles X.

The Marquis de Louvois was the descendant of the Louvois, father and son, who were Minister of the war of Louis XIV.
The castle, erected at the 16th century on the sat of a strong former castle, see grown the furure Cardinal de Retz. Vincent of Paul occupied a room at the first floor for sixteen years.
The castle was deeply modified at the following century and the park laid out by Le Nôtre to receive Louis XIV. It is a big building set of bricks and rocks, with two wings in t-shape, far end of an avenue of chestnut trees. The big terrace dominates a pool and lower, the valley of the Small Morin. The last member of the family who stayed there during summer was Edmée de La Rochefoucauld, duchess, writer and president of the jury of the french Fémina litterary price. Deceased in Paris in September 1991 at the age of ninety six, the duchess rests in the family vault in Montmirail. Its heirs sold the castle.

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The Avenues


The Avenues are a part of the town heritage. This is a historic wooden space that links up the Castle to the forest of Red ditches. The Avenues were classified and protected by ministerial decision of February 1944.

History:  in 1691, when Louvois died, his elder son, the Marquis of Courtanvaux resumed this heritage. He wanted to embellish the domain, bought more pieces of land, and extended the big Avenue. Formerly, some 770 lime trees and elms were aligned on an area of 11 hectares. about.
The La Rochefoucauld family leaved the three first hectares to the city of Montmirail in 1995. The Avenues were partially destroyed by the storm of December 1999.

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The lanes of the battlements


Capital of the Champagne Brie, Montmirail keep the heritage of the Roman, Merovingian and Carolingian. The circuit of the walls of Montmirail was imposing if one refers to engravings of the 17th century that shows towers, courtines and protection walls.
The most important was the protection of the city and its wealths, day and night, against fights.

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The statues tour


In 1618, Saint-Vincent-de-Paul ask to place a statue of Marie above each of the four doors of the city : Door of En Thierry, Door of Pommesson, Bottom Door and Top Door. Three statues "Virgin with a Child" are inserted in the walls of the houses closed to the former doors.

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