The Château de Malmaison, from residence to museum

By bfnadmin  | Date: 2022-04-18

      
    The Château de Malmaison, from residence to museum
                    By My B. Photos by My B. Published on 19 April 1821 to 18h24 

Malmaison Castle, located in Rueil-Malmaison in the Hauts-de-Seine, now houses the National Napoleonic Museum. During the Revolution, Joséphine Bonaparte acquired it and the residence became the Imperial Palace of Malmaison, transforming it into the seat of government for a time.

We dont really know the origin of the name Malmaison which means "bad house". Between occupation of the premises by Norman brigands in the Middle Ages or the fact that the city was known to take care of sick people, the mystery remains.

In 824, Guillaume Goudet, sergeant-at-arms of Charles VI, acquires the domain which remains in his family until 1763, by the families Dauvergne, Perrot and Barentine. In 824 the land passes to the son of the chancellor of Aguesseau then in 1771 to Jacques-Jean Le Couteulx du Molay, a wealthy banker in the kingdom. Madame du Molay holds a literary salon there where she receives Abbé Delille, Madame Vigée-Lebrun, Grimm and Bernardin de Saint-Pierre.

During the Revolution, Malmaison was sold and passed into the hands of Joséphine Bonaparte . From 1800 to 1802, this small castle becomes with the Tuileries the seat of the government of France where the ministers of the Consulate meet frequently. In 1800, the family moved to Saint-Cloud and Joséphine regularly return to the "Palais Impérial de Malmaison" to develop and expand the estate. This residence will return to her after her divorce in 1809 where she ended her days in 1815.

Le Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au muséeLe Château de Malmaison, de la demeure au musée

Now transformed into museum, the Château de Malmaison reveals various richly decorated rooms which present a rich collection of works dating from the beginnings of the reign of Napoleon 1st. From furniture to paintings, including weapons and porcelain, this museum is a mine of discovery.

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It also allows you to enter the life of the couple and their children thanks to the reconstruction of different pieces of the time. Thus, one can discover Napoleons famous mahogany library or the oval room where Josephine ended her days. The national museum of the castles of Malmaison and Bois-Préau also has an exceptional collection of souvenirs from the exile of the Emperor Napoleon on the island of Sainte-Hélène de 1821 upon his death, in 1821.

Obviously, the place offers thematic visits which allow you to go more into the history of this historic couple. We discover in particular his passion for botany and roses, his original name. Also, do not miss to discover the old rose garden, a rose garden of near 150 varieties that will amaze your senses.

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