/ / Fort Royal: photos, description (Fort Royal de l'ile Sainte-Marguerite)

Fort Royal: photos, description (Fort Royal de l'ile Sainte-Marguerite)

Fort Royal (Royal) stands on the island of Saint-Marguerite. Four hundred years its history is a bloody battle and not solved is still a mystery.

Fortifications built by the Romans. In the early seventeenth century the French laid the Fort with bastions. In 1634, the engineer Charles-Bernard Duplessis-besançon strengthened the Fort, which did not prevent Spain to capture it in 1635. But in the spring of 1637, the French returned the island. Cardinal Richelieu, realizing the strategic importance of the naval fortress, appointed military Governor here.

To further strengthen the Fort had a hand in the great military engineer Marshal Vauban. He promoted the idea of the "iron belt" of fortresses to protect France. It formed the Vauban Fort in the form of an irregular Pentagon. At the same time, in 1685, Louis XIV decided to turn the fortress into a prison. Its first prisoners were six Protestant priests were arrested after the abolition of the edict of Nantes on religious freedom. But the most famous local prisoners became a famous Man in the iron mask.

He was brought here in 1687. No one knew his name, seen his face, had no right to speak to him. Nominated dozens of assumptions - whether it was a twin brother of Louis XIV, or the disgraced superintendent Nicolas Fouquet, or somehow Moliere... the Truth still is nobody knows. Voltaire in 1751 in the historical work "the Age of Louis XIV" claimed that no one finds out. Pushkin moved his line: "Mr. de Similar was the last of the Ministers who knew this strange mystery. His son-in-law, Marshal de La Felled, was telling me that at the death of his father he was on his knees begged him to reveal who was the man in the iron mask. Similar responded that it is a state secret and he swore to her not to open.

In the island prison happened to a lot of other amazing stories. In 1816 after the collapse of Napoleon there was hidden one hundred of his Mamluks (personal guards). In 1874 hence escaped Marshal Bazin, responsible for the defeat of the French in battle against the Prussians at Sedan (guy de Maupassant wrote in his travel diary "On the water" that the escape was planned and organized by the wife of the Marshal). It was the only escape from the fortress. And in the XX century here voluntarily made himself the painter Jean Le GAC that no interference paint on the walls. Most of his works devoted to the history of Arab prisoners of Fort Royal.

Now in the Fort is the Museum of the sea: a huge Roman cistern for rainwater collection, the artifacts raised from the sunken ships. But, of course, the main exhibit of the Fort, where he spent twelve years the Man in the iron mask. High window taken in a dense grid. If you stand up, you can see a piece of the shore. It was here that landed in search of the mysterious prisoner Athos and Raoul in the novel of Alexander Dumas 'Vicomte de Bragelone": "When they arrived to the shores of the island, they thought that before them the promised land". The island of Saint Marguerite is amazingly beautiful, but the Iron Mask I never found out.