Guédelon (How to build a Castle 2)

An abundance of natural resources made this site, two hours south of Paris, worthy of the ‘biggest archeological experiment in the world’.

The Irish get to work in all areas.  Quarrying: all building stone is hand quarried.


Guédelon stone worker Shannon pegs and feathers a block of limestone


Cutting the blocks for the crenelation of the castle tower cut by eye and hand


These are moved by a medieval wheelbarrow, which has fantastic leverage..


But by far the most popular sight for tourists is the ‘squirrel wheel’.

This is a winch, human powered, for raising stone to the tower high above.

See Tom on the brake (right) in case the ‘squirrel’ runs out of breath.


Up above Lu Lu receives the block through a trapdoor in the tower scaffold


Master mason Florian invites the Irish to build a dry stone wall.  This is skill sharing, as normally at Guédelon the ‘pierre seche’ (dry stone method)  is not practiced.


Our stone arrives by horse. The geese are not one bit happy. The new wall is next to their house and they make a big fuss.


Up on the castle roof:

Timber scaffold has been proven 5 times more load bearing than the modern day stuff



700 year old plumb line systems seem to work just fine too


Some things don’t really change

20161009_155123We enjoyed every minute


Goodbye to Guédelon for now




8 thoughts on “Guédelon (How to build a Castle 2)

  1. Thank you Louise for this beautiful account of the fantastic and inspiring week that we lucky Irish people experienced in Guédelon.

  2. Geese are very proprietorial and do not appreciate intrusion which is why the Romans used them to wake the Vestal Virgins to threats.

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