Chateau de La Napoule, seaside
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Panoramic photo by Thomas Krueger EXPERT Taken 15:36, 26/02/2009 - Views loading...

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Chateau de La Napoule, seaside

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The Château de la Napoule is a restored French castle, located in Mandelieu-la-Napoule in the Alpes-Maritimes Department of France, It is classified as an historical landmark since 1993, and the gardens are listed by the French Ministry of Culture as among the Notable gardens of France.

History
The castle was constructed in the 14th century by the Comtes of Villeneuve. Over the centuries it was rebuilt several times. In the 19th century it was turned into a glass factory. In 1918, it was purchased by two Americans, Henry Clews and Marie Clews (1880-1959) , who restored and moved into the castle, and added additional sections in their own personal style, with sculptures by Henry Clews. The castle is owned by the La Napoule Art Foundation, which was founded in 1951 by Marie Clews, and serves as a cultural center.

The Gardens
When the Clews acquired the castle, the park had cedar and eucalyptus trees, and had been abandoned for years. Marie Clews began the restoration of the gardens. The park of the castle today has elements of a garden à la française and of an English landscape garden,with a grand alley, basins, perspectives, and views of the sea. In addition, there are three smaller gardens in the Italian style; the Garden de la Mancha, next to the Tower of La Mancha, under which the mausoleum of the Clews family is located; the terraces, which overlook the Bay of Cannes, which are planted with cypress trees, hedges and romarin; and the secret garden, in a corner of the walls with windows looking at the sea, with a venetian well in the center.

Sources and Citations
This article is an edited translation from the French Wikipedia, with additional information from the site of the Committee of Parks and Gardens of the MInistry of Culture of France.

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This panorama was taken in France

This is an overview of France

France is affectionately referred to as "the Hexagon" for its overall shape.

French history goes back to the Gauls, a Celtic tribe which inhabited the area circa 300BC until being conquered by Julius Caesar.

The Franks were the first tribe to adopt Catholic Christianity after the Roman Empire collapsed. France became an independent location in the Treaty of Verdun in (843 AD), which divided up Charlemagne's Carolingian Empire into several portions.

The French monarchy reached its zenith during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King, who stood for seventy-two years as the Monarch of all Monarchs. His palace of Versailles and its Hall of Mirrors are a splendid treasure-trove of Baroque art.

The French Revolution ended the rule of the monarchy with the motto "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity!" On July 14th, 1789 angry mobs stormed La Bastille prison and began the Revolution in which Louis XVI, his wife Marie-Antoinette and thousands of others met the guillotine.

One decade after the revolution, Napolean Bonaparte seized control of the Republic and named himself Emperor. His armies conquered most of Europe and his Napoleonic Code became a lasting legal foundation for concepts of personal status and property.

During the period of colonization France controlled the largest empire in the world, second only to Britain.

France is one of the founding members of the European Union and the United Nations, as well as one of the nuclear armed nations of the world.

Text by Steve Smith.

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