On Friday we went to visit a castle called the Roche Guyon. We took the bus for one hour. When we arrived, we looked at a scale model of the castle. Our guide, Thomas, told us the castle was built in two different centuries, first during the Middle Ages and then during the Renaissance. The castle was built into a cliff made of two types of rocks: limestone and flintstone. Then he explained the castle's built-in defenses: the machicolichon and the murderholes (loops). The archers would shoot arrows out of the loops and knights would pour boiling liquid down the machicolchon.
Next we went into the castle, the parts that were built into the cliff, and were underground. Some of these parts were used by the Germans during World War II as pillboxes, a place to store ammunition. It was very damp and there was no heat. During the middle ages, people lived alongside with animals to keep warm.
We continued our visit by climbing up to the dungeon, which was partially destoryed during the French Revolution. We climbed all the way up --almost 250 steps! On our way, we saw the pigeon house, where they kept over 2000 pigeons, which were not raised for sending messages, but so that their excrements could be used as fertilizer in the fields.
From the top of the dungeon, we could see much of the Seine Valley, and the meandering river!
After lunch, we did a workshop on the coat of arms used in the middle ages. Thomas explained the different
shapes and symbols used, and told us that some of them can still be found today (The lion is used for Peugeot cars for example! ) We each made our own coat of arms, choosing symbols that represented ourselves, which we presented to each other back at school. It was a great and enriching day!
A huge thank for all the 9-12 girls who write us this resume of La Roche Guyon