Étampes - a suburb of Paris

Countries and cities

The center of the sub-prefecture and the former capital of the duchy, the city of Étampes is located 48 km south-west of Paris in the department of Essonne.

Historical overview

One of the first mentions of Etampa is contained in the story of Gregory of Tours about the feudal war that devastated this area in the 6th century. This village is also mentioned in the description of the battle between the troops of Neustria, Burgundy and Austrasia in the winter of 604. In the 9th-11th century. The city has been invaded by the Vikings several times.

In the 12th century by royal decree, the city receives the right to freedom of trade, which contributes to the growth of wealth and influence. In 1130, at a council of four bishops in the presence of King Louis VI, a decision was made to support Innocent II as a pretender to the papal throne. In the same city in 1147, the 2nd Crusade to the Holy Land begins. Under Philip Augustus, Etampes ranks among the most beautiful and richest cities in the kingdom, second only to Paris and Orleans.

In 1411, the rich city was besieged by the army of John the Fearless, annexed to Burgundy and until 1478 was ruled by the dukes. In the 16th century in the history of Etampa, a period of domination of royal favorites begins. Beloveds of François I Anna de Pischu, Henri II Diane de Poitiers and Henry IV Gabriela d'Estre become his seigneurs.

During the era of religious wars, Etampes found itself in the center of a cycle of bloody events and was repeatedly besieged by warring parties. During the Fronde, he also ends up in the hands of the rebel A. de la Tour d'Auvergne. The city was annexed to the royal lands in 1712.

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In 1849, a railway passes through the city, linking Paris and Orleans, and from that time the industrial development of Etampes began. In 1923, G. Dresch's motorcycle factory was opened here, but the city made an even greater contribution to the development of aviation. The flights of A. Bleriot, M. Farman and the opening of one of the first aviation schools are associated with it. Aerobatic team Patrol de France was also established at Etampes.

During the Second World War, one of the main bases of the Luftwaffe was located in Etampe, which led to great destruction in the city due to the Allied bombing. A visit to the city is included in the program of the Liberation Road tourist route, for the participation of its inhabitants in the Resistance Etampes was awarded the Military Cross (La croix de guerre 1939-1945).

Attractions of the suburb

For a long time, Etampes was the capital of the duchy and a major religious center, so there is no shortage of interesting buildings on its streets and squares.

Ruins of Etampes Castle

The ruins of the Etampes castle, built at the beginning of the 11th century, are considered a symbol of the city and secular power. under Robert II the Pious.

The most well-preserved are its donjon or the Tower of Gwynette (Tour de Guinette), which is distinguished by a complex plan shape, reminiscent of a clover leaf, and fragments of the fortress walls.

The monuments of clerical architecture in Etampes are in much better condition.

Collegiate Church of Our Lady

From medieval times, it has preserved the collegiate church of Our Lady (La Collégiale Notre-Dame-du-Fort) built in Etampes in the 11th century. and expanded in the 12th-13th century.

Its architectural appearance is dominated by the Romanesque style, but at the same time, all stages of the formation of Gothic architecture can be traced.

Church of st. Basil of Kessariysky

The second significant temple of the city is the church of St. Basil of Caesarea (L'église Saint-Basile) also belongs to the architectural monuments of the 11th century.

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The temple was rebuilt in the 12th century, while the entrance portal, the spire of the tower, the design of the nave and transept were changed. In the 19th century chapels of the Virgin Mary and St. Joseph were created in the church. Its interior is decorated with high reliefs, an oak pulpit and a marble font.

Church Saint-Martin

The construction of the collegiate church of Saint-Martin (La collégiale Saint-Martin) was mostly completed a little later in 1142. It is famous for its "falling bell tower" of the 15th century. in the architectural style of the Renaissance.

Church Saint-Gilles

In the originally Romanesque church of Saint-Gilles (L'église Saint-Gilles) built in 1123 in the 15th century. the choir and transept were rebuilt in Gothic style.

Frescoes of the 15th century have been preserved in its interiors. with pictures of St. Michael, John the Baptist and St. Vincent.

Monuments of civil architecture

The city has a very large number of monuments of civil architecture. This is also a former home for orphans of the 16th century. Hotel Dew (Hotel-Dieu), and the building of the city theater, designed by the architect G. Daviu in 1851-1852, and the college of J. E. Getter, housed in the former hospital of St. Antoine whose construction dates back to the 13th century.

Etampes has preserved many old mansions, some of which are associated with the names of royal favorites. These include the palace where the Duchess of Etampes and the favorites of Francis I A. de Pischlu lived (L'hôtel de Jean Lamoureux) and the Hotel de Esprit Hattes (L'hôtel d'Esprit Hattes), which D. de Poitiers visited.

Etampes Castles

No less magnificent are such masterpieces of urban architecture of the 16-18th century as the castles of Valne (le château de Valnay), Thief (le château de Vauroux), Petit-Saint-Mars (le château du Petit-Saint-Mars) or the Saint-Mars mansion. Yon (l'hôtel Saint-Yon).

In the ancient city it is pleasant to relax by the fountains, to see the sculptures by A. Deliol on several streets, and in its vicinity to visit the Neolithic menhir Pierrefitte.

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How to get to Etampes

It can be reached by direct RER C train from Austerlitz train station. Final stop Gare d'Étampes. Travel time is about 1 hour.