Château de Fontainebleau
"The true home of kings, the house of the ages", as Napoleon I liked to call it, the Château de Fontainebleau is not the palace of one sovereign, it is the palace of each of them, a "family house" for the kings of France, passed down from generation to generation from the Middle Ages to the 19th century. While the medieval origins of the Château are still visible thanks to the old dungeon - dominating the Oval Court - Francis I, who was won over by the site and the forest of game, was the one who ordered spectacular developments from 1528. His successors continued his work: Henri IV, Louis XIII, Louis XIV, Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette, up to Napoleon I. Fontainebleau became a place of captivity for Pope Pius VII between 1812 and 1814, and it was the scene of the collapse of the First Empire in April 1814. The palace was the scene of Napoleon I’s abdication on 4th and 6th April and, following his famous farewell speech to his old guard in the Cour d'Honneur, he went into exile on the island of Elba.