(active 1526-1550 in Chambord)

Exterior view

Château, Chambord (Loir-et-Cher)

The original designer of the Château de Chambord was Italian, Domenico da Cortona, but his plans seem to have been modified in the course of execution by French masons.

King François I, attracted by the site of Chambord as a hunting lodge, first caused plans to be drawn up for a château there in 1519. Work was begun shortly afterwards, but was interrupted and actively continued in 1526, and the construction was completed in 1550. It was heavily extended afterwards by Henri II and Louis XIV to its final shape we know well today.

As it stands today, Chambord is essentially a French medieval château with square keep flanked by round towers from which run ranges of lower buildings, again with towers at the corners, the whole being surrounded by a moat. However, it is considered to be a distinctive French Renaissance architecture which blends traditional French medieval forms with classical Renaissance structures. The photo shows the northwest façade of the castle.

View the ground plan of the building.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.