N & E
Napoleon & Empire

Castles, palaces and strongholds

Under the Consulate, French castles, both military and civilian, have recovered with difficulty from the devastation that the Revolution had caused. When they had not been destroyed (the Bastille was not an isolated case) or burnt, these buildings, witnesses of the old regime, had been vandalized, looted, in the best case bought by opportunists who lacked the means to maintain them...

Gradually, what we would call today "the market for real estate" came back to life, facilitated by the institutional stability and the establishment of the Civil Code, enacted March 21, 184, which defined and ensured the right to property.

Under the Empire, the emergence of a new wealthy class, the creation of the nobility of the Empire and the return of some emigrants have promoted this market, both in new buildings as the old. The princes, dukes, counts, barons that were senior officers, ministers, diplomats, prefects or financial (not forgetting the imperial family) had to hold their rank, and investment real estate was undoubtedly the most visible to the Imperial court.

Meanwhile, military-oriented castles have been maintained and upgraded to meet the war situation the Empire had to face throughout its existence.

What have these buildings become nowadays? According to our travels, we have captured the image of these buildings' current state. Some foreign palaces in connection with the Napoleonic era also appeared worthy of being represented. The list below is to grow as a result of our future trips

This is, two centuries after the Imperial era, to capture the image of these buildings before oblivion, or worse estate developers, do take care to make them disappear forever.

Reception at Malmaison in 1802, oil on canvas by François Flameng
Reception at Malmaison in 1802, oil on canvas by François Flameng