Porte Saint Pierre, Nantes!

Well, why not stay with Nantes. It is such a lovely city and plenty to see and do, in fact I am not done yet! Even thus as said , come here often several times a year but so much to see in my belle France. There is a whole library still untouch. For now let me tell you about the Porte Saint Pierre and its cousin the Place Saint Pierre in Nantes. Of course, you now this is in the Loire Atlantique dept 44 of Pays de la Loire region.

The Porte Saint-Pierre ,also called Porte du Bastion Saint-Pierre or Manoir Guéguen is the best-preserved vestige of the city walls of Nantes. The gate was protected by the Guy de Thouars tower and the Evêché tower today gone.

Dating from the 15C for the lower part and resting on foundations of the Gallo-Roman period 3C, also incorporating vestiges of the enclosures of the 9C and 13C, it is located at the end of the rue de l’Évêché overlooking Cours Saint-Pierre and Place Maréchal-Foch, very near the chevet of Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul Cathedral (see post).


At the beginning of the 16C, Bishop Guéguen chose to have a house built above the gate itself. Part of it was demolished when the rue Royale now rue du Roi-Albert was opened in the 18C. The medieval town is limited to the current district of Bouffay. The gate leads to the Place du Maréchal Foch, on which stands a statue of king Louis XIV at the top of a column. King Henry IV crossed it, it is said, when he entered the city in 1598 to come and sign the Edict of Nantes. Indeed, the road from Paris ended at Porte Saint-Pierre. In the 18C, the drawbridge was replaced by a stone pavement to facilitate access to the newly built Cours Saint-Pierre and Saint-André. In 1910, the Saint-Pierre gate was cleared from the old bishopric. From the 1920s to the 1960s, the gate housed the Musée de Nantes par l’image or images museum through the image which presented in particular a model of the port. Since then, the collections of this museum have been transferred to the castle of the Dukes of Brittany.

The Place Saint-Pierre square is bordered by Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul Cathedral.(see post). Six arteries lead to the square: rue de l’Évêché and rue du Roi-Albert, rue Portail, rue du Général-Leclerc-de-Hauteclocque rue de Verdun, as well as rue Mathelin-Rodier. The square serving as a forecourt to Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul Cathedral, it inherited the first part of its name. During the French revolution, it was baptized place des Gracches.

The Place Saint-Pierre is located at the eastern entrance to the ancient city, inside the enclosure of the Gallo-Roman castrum built after the 270s. The first cathedral was built on the site in the 4C. On September 5, 1661, while visiting Nantes to attend the States of Brittany, king Louis XIV, ordered the arrest of Nicolas Fouquet (see Vaux le Vicomte fame and post), his superintendent of finance. After a failed attempt in front of the castle of the Dukes of Brittany, Charles de Batz-Castelmore d’Artagnan,(see post) the king’s musketeer, manages to stop Fouquet on the square in front of the cathedral. And yes the petit train was passing by too !!!


Not easy to find specific tourist destination description on these spots but will give you the general tourist webpages of Nantes. I , of course, have a pretty good size library at home::)

The tourist office of Nantes in English: Toursit office of Nantes

The patrimoine or heritage site of Nantes on Porte St Pierre in French : Heritage site of Nantes on Porte St Pierre

This is a wonderful area to walk one of my favorites, you find the Cathedral and from there walk all around it in a radius of 1 km and see the magnificent architecture and historical spots all around; awesome. Hope you enjoy the walk around the Porte St Pierre and Place St Pierre of Nantes.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheer to all!!!

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