The first recorded mention of Angles appeared in 1025, under the denomination “Castellum Ingla”. At the time, the castle at Angles was a motte and bailey structure, with wooden fortifications built atop a mound of earth and surrounded by ditches. It was situated where you are standing right now, at the top of the promontory.
Along with Chauvigny, it was one of the two fortifications established by the Bishops of Poitiers on the eastern edge of their diocese. Angles occupies a very strategic position, close to where Poitou borders Berry and Touraine. Because the cliff overlooks the Anglin at a hight of almost 40 meters, it afforded control over who crossed the river.
At the end of the 11th century, the bishops lost control over Angles. The Lusignan family, whose powerbase was expanding at that time, controlled the fortification up until the mid-13th century, when the bishops reclaimed the territory. Over the course of these two centuries, the Lusignan family extended the castle to the degree they fortified the whole of the rocky outcrop.
Photos Credits :
– Fresque murale de la Motte, Limoges © Région Nouvelle Aquitaine, Inventaire général du Patrimoine culturel. P. Rivière, 2018
– Le château à motte de Saint-Sylvain-d’Anjou, reconstitution d’une motte du XIe siècle © Wikipediacommuns -cumulus
– Emplacement de la motte castrale d’Angles sur l’Anglin© Communauté d’agglomération du Grand Châtellerault, Paul Maturi
– Vue d’ensemble de Chauvigny © Région Nouvelle Aquitaine, Inventaire général du Patrimoine culturel. J. Bonneau, 2013
– Carte du diocèse de Poitiers avant 1317 © Région Nouvelle Aquitaine, Inventaire général du Patrimoine culturel. S. Casenove, 2018
– Vue du château d’Angles depuis l’Anglin © Région Nouvelle Aquitaine, Inventaire général du Patrimoine culturel. J. Chalard-Deschamps, 2018
The Motte and Bailey Keep
It is here, atop this rocky outcrop, that you will find the first iteration of the castle at Angles, in the form of a feudal motte and bailey keep. Let’s set the scene!