Coucy at the Marvel
Coucy à la Merveille
29,30.06 - 6,7,13,15,20,21.07.2018
Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique (Picardie region)
Geographical, cultural and historical context
The town of Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique is located in Northern France, north of Paris and west of Laon, the capital city of the Aisne department in Hauts-de-France region. The Château de Coucy was built on the tip of a bluff or falaise in the 13th century by Enguerrand III de Boves, Lord of Coucy (c.1182–1242), who went down to history with the epithet Enguerrand "the Great" for being one of the most ambitious and powerful French noblemen of his time. Enguerrand was also a valiant knight who fought and won at the famous battle of Bouvines, July 27 AD 1214, which ended the Anglo-French War (1202-1214 AD) between King John of England John (also known as John Lackland, 1166-1216), and King Philip II of France (1165-1223) for the domination of Normandy region.
At its heyday, the Coucy castle was famous for the pride of its lords and its massive donjon, the largest in Europe, measuring 35 meters wide and 55 meters tall. After being dismantled in 1652 and used as a stone quarry, the castle underwent renovations in the 19th century by the French architect Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc (1814-1879), famous for his interpretive "restorations" of medieval buildings according to the Gothic Revival movement. Unfortunately, in year 1917 during the WWI the German army, which was occupying the castle since 1914, decided to dynamite the keep and the four towers to prevent their use by enemy artillery. The destruction caused a widespread public outrage and the ruins were declared "a memorial to barbarity".
Event description and programme
Every Friday and Saturday in July the Château de Coucy becomes the magnificent setting of a great medieval and fantasy event, a real epic theatre combining the charm of the Middle Ages with colourful performing arts and light shows. At the dawn of the 16th century, on the borders of Picardy and the Marne, Lord Enguerrand de Coucy rules over his dominion symbolized by the grandeur and splendour of his castle: Coucy was then a formidable stronghold with the highest dungeon in Europe. The visitors are welcomed to discover the fate of the lord and his progeny, following a tumultuous intrigue which will lead the lord himself and his tender Luciane as far as Nicopolis, in Turkey, for the last crusade...
An unforgettable experience where mystery, total escape and oriental atmosphere are accompanied by the marvel of far-away ages with sumptuous costumes, epic cavalcades and fabulous legends before the spectacular final battle between the forces of good and evil. The rich programme includes crafts workshops (basket weaving, herbalism) as well the reconstruction of a medieval village and market featuring many historical characters of the period, like stone cutters, barbers, merchants, inn-keepers, crossbowmen, knights, jugglers, fire-eaters among the others, children dress up and makeup games, and, finally, the great pyrotechnic show.
Please contact the Organizers for confirmation and further details.
Info & Contact
Event official web pages
Association de Mise en Valeur du Château de Coucy (AMVCC)
Address: 7-9 rue du Pot d'étain, 02380 Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique, France
Tel.: +33 (0)3 23520153 | Fax: +33 (0)3 23520665
Coucy-le-Château-Auffrique Town Council
Aisne Tourist Board
Agence de Développement et de Réservation Touristiques de l’Aisne
Address: Parc Foch - Avenue du Maréchal Foch, 02007 Laon Cedex, France
Tel.: +33 (0)3 23277676 | Fax: +33 (0)3 23277689
Image: Association de Mise en Valeur du Château de Coucy, all rights reserved.
Text: AMVCC, Wikipedia, Aisne Tourist Board, Le Guide des Festivals, Fetes-Medievales, Office de Tourisme de Coucy-Le-Château
Coucy and its castle on Google Maps:
Promos and video reportages of the event:
About Coucy and its Castle and Lord Enguerrand III: