The lower Castel
Belpech, a village to discover
From yesteryears to nowadays, what a history…
Thanks to L. and T. Guillosson for translation
You are facing a series of four notable houses, built by the Mauléon family, lords of Belpech, around 1567. At the time, they made up a unique stately ensemble known as “the manor”.
The owner compiled an inventory in 1798, from which we learn the building consisted of “two floors above a ground floor, that a large stone staircase (destroyed in 1855) lead to the great hall and other rooms: visiting lounge, anteroom, and small lounge lit by a window overlooking the courtyard…”. The second floor contained four bedrooms and the attic. The lounge was decorated with Bergamo tapestries, unfortunately already badly damaged by 1799.
On the ground floor were found two kitchens and a storage room, the servant room and an access to the store and the cellar. In those days, the stables and a garden were located in Tower Street (rue de la Tour), opposite the manor.
In 1812, the site was split into four parts that were sold separately; one was bought by the parish and still contains the clergy house. The building still contains three impressive XVIIth century stucco fireplaces, works of art from the great Bezier plaster sculptor Jean Sabatier.
Moses bringing forth the water from the rock of Horeb
Sculpted fireplace by Jean Sabatier, circa 1660-1670
Oak House, Laffont House, Mauléon's Manor house
Land registry of Belpech, town map, 1812
Notice several of the oldest houses in the village, which can be seen around the market hall square, besides the lower castle:
At the corner of rue René Cassin, the “Amigues House” (from the name of the XXth century owner) is also known as the “Oak House” from the 9 oak pillars supporting its three floors. This XVIth century half-timber-framed house with jettied upper storeys is grade II-listed. One of the beams is decorated with an engraving of an unknown woman, called the “Woman with pearly hairnet”.
Take notice of this other half-timber-framed house standing across from the church portal, which is known as the “Laffont House” (from the owner’s name). Edouard Laffont, one of the family’s descendants, was the first local historian. He wrote “La baronnie archiépiscopale de Belpech"