Photographer's Note

Second posting from the castle in Puilaurens. On the top of a cliff alt. 700m are the remains of the castle with origin 1000 years back in time.

The inner courtyard was probably more adopted to the use of the inhabitants at the time - still you can have a feeling of a castle 'at life' seeing the tourists having their picnic in the shades of the large tree.

More of the castle in Pulaurens
At the border of Aude and Pyrenees-Orientales departement, Puilaurens settled down for a long time as the most meridional fortified castle of the kingdom of France. At 700 metres altitude, this castle dominates the village of Lapradelle, surrounded by a fir forest.
The first mention about the castle of Puilaurens was in 985, in that time the castle depended of the abbey of Saint-Michel-de-Cuxa. During the XIth century, it used to show the sovreignty of the count of Besalù, then of the viscount of Narbonne.

Pierre Catala, first known tenant of the castle, was witness of the submission of Guillaume de Peyrepertuse to Simon de Montfort. Twelve years later, Guillaume de Peyrepertuse had the control of this place. The next owner, Roger Catala, he also, such as his predecessor did, sheltered many cathars. In 1241, Pierre Paraire, the cathar deacon of the Fenouillèdes area stayed in the castle and around the years 1245-1246 many Perfects, men and women, were lodged there.
We don’t know exactly when the castle fell under the royal control but the annexion seems to have been around 1250: in 1255, Saint-Louis ordered to the seneschal of carcassonne to fortify the castle. Protecting the border against the Aragon kingdom, it was occupied in 1259 by the border’s most important garrison, under Odon de Montreuil orders.
Untill the Treaty of the Pyrenees (1659), many spanish inroads occured. Badly defended and maintained at the end of the XVIIth century, the castle was finally completly abandoned after the French Revolution.
The legend says that during the clear nights, the Dame Blanche (White Lady), niece of Philippe le Bel, comes back and walks with her hazy clothes around the demolished wall walks.


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Additional Photos by Jack R Johanson (jrj) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4529 W: 494 N: 7430] (34843)
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