At Loches, the character of Anne of Brittany, Duchess and Queen, was imprinted in stone by the construction of an oratory, a true architectural jewel in the flamboyant gothic style.
Anne of Brittany first visited the royal castle of Loches shortly after her marriage to King Charles VIII at the château de Langeais (December 1491). Under his reign, work was started on a new main building, backing on to the original castle (14th century) in the northern part of the spur. On January 10 1499, the Duchess and Queen, accompanied by Louis XII, her second husband, made a solemn entry to Loches and spent four weeks there. She was particularly fond of the forest of Loches where she could take part in royal hunts.
She returned to the royal castle in 1500 for a longer stay when the construction of her oratory, started in 1498, was completed. This engraving shows how it looked in the mid-19th century.
Built in the flamboyant gothic style between 1498 and 1500, during the reign of King Louis XII, the oratory is not strictly speaking a chapel because services were not held there. It was more like a place of prayer, echoing the piety of the lady who ordered its construction. The dais marks where the Queen would sit, facing the altar.
Design: Cité Royale de Loches / Departmental Council of Indre-et-Loire