Montastruc Castle

24520, Lamonzie-Montastruc
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« Discover one of the most beautiful castles in the Périgord. Montastruc Castle is conveniently located 11 kilometres from Bergerac and 15 kilometres from Bergerac-Dordogne-Périgord airport. The castle is fully offered for rent. »


The name of the castle, with Its Latin etymology, and found in other monuments or towns in the South-West of France, is of a disputed interpretation.

Among the most likely: the fortified mountain (mons adstructum), or the mountain under the stars...

The Caudeau valley, at the foot of Montastruc, retains many traces of habitat, from prehistory to Roman times.

From the 5th century, the invasion of the Germans (407) and then that of the Visigoths, and finally the annexation of The Aquitaine to the Kingdom of the Franks by Clovis (507), brought Montastruc back into the early Middle Ages.
These troubled times lead its inhabitants into the cluseaux and caves of its rocky outcrop, later fortified and separated by the digging of deep ditches.

La Monzia (La Moinerie) is mentioned on 13th century documents, under the protection of Montastruc, a stronghold under the Castrum of Montclar. In 1309, Hugues I d'Abzac, lord of Clerans and knight for Montclar, received a donation of property and buildings to La Monzia, including the "domus" of Montastruc.

In 1329, his son Hugh II of Abzac fortified Montastruc on the existing older bases. Rudel IV of Mouleydier, lord and baron of Montclar, allowed the completion of the work and received the solemn tribute as overlord, in front of the altar of St. Catherine of Lamonzie. Montastruc and the abzac became a permanent threat to Montclar and his barons.
In 1437, it was mentioned as the "Reppayrium de Monte Astruco", the stronghold of Bertrand d'Abzac. On 14 February 1439, Amaury d'Estissac, heir to the Montclar castle, gave Bertrand d'Abzac all the rights of high, middle and low justice that could belong to him, subject to the symbolic tribute of a pair of white gloves. But Bertrand d'Abzac, taken prisoner after his occupation of Domme, was beheaded in Limoges on 1 March 1439 by order of Charles VII and the demolition of Montastruc, "at the height of infamy", was ordered following the criminal trial of 1438.
In 1449, Jean de Bretagne returned to Jeanne de Beynac, widow of Bertrand d'Abzac, the montastruc estate through submission to the royal authority. The castle was rebuilt from 1480, under the letters patent of Louis XI of September 1475.

In 1568, on Christmas Day, Blaise de Monluc, invested by Catherine de Medici of the maintenance of order in Guyenne, besieged Montastruc. Two cannons force the Huguenot garrison to surrender. New siege by the Senechal of the Périgord in 1569 which took it from the Protestants and returned it to the abzac.
In 1637, the second revolt of the crunchers was led in a forest, not far from Montastruc, by La Mothe La Foret, brother-in-law of Charles d'Abzac, and Grellety, ploughman of the latter's lands.

On 26 May 1650, the walls of Montastruc saw at their feet the defeat of the rearguard of Monsieur de Valletta, by the Dukes of Bouillon and La Rochefoucauld, when they accompanied Madame the Princess of Condé and her son, the Duke of Enghien to Bordeaux. , during the last big slingshot.
The period of the revolution will hardly affect Montastruc. More recently, in May 1940, HRH the Grand Duchess Charlotte of Luxembourg and her family went into exile at The Castle of Montastruc, exfiltrated from Luxembourg by France before the arrival of German troops. They stayed there for a few months under the protection of a section of Senegalese gunners, before reaching Portugal... on June 16, 1940, they were joined in Montastruc by the last Empress - Queen of Austria-Hungary Zita, sister of Felix of Bourbon-Parma, husband of Charlotte of Luxembourg. On his way into exile to Spain via Bordeaux, Zita passed through Montastruc with his 8 children, including his eldest Otto of Habsburg, Archduke of Austria.

The castle today

A stronghold of abzac since the 13th century, Montastruc then passed by marriage to the Ferrand of Mauvezin, the Peruse of the Cars, the Garrich of Uzech, and then in 1849, to the Marquess of Lostanges of Saint-Alvere, followed by the Loeff in 1936.
After the last war, he was in the Ordonneaux, then briefly changed hands before falling in 1998 to Philippe Raynaud of Fitte and Ségolène de Marcellus, his wife.

Then begins a long restoration work... Ségolène de Marcellus is descended from Marie-Louis Jean André Charles (aka Lodoïs) by Martin du Tyrac, 4th Earl of Marcellus ( [xxxxxxx] ), who after difficult and eventful negotiations, bought the statue now known as Venus de Milo, and took it back to France where it was presented and offered on March 1, 1821 to King Louis XVIII who donated it to the Louvre.

A life-size cast of the Venus with an identical patina made by hand was made in November 2015 by the Louvre's moulding workshops and was exhibited in Montastruc.

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