Montmayeur Castle, also known as Arvier Castle, is a castle located in Arvier, Aosta Valley.
Currently, the castle is in ruins as the castle has been uninhabited for centuries and only a few traces remain of it. The keep, if not the entire castle, dates from 1271 when Anselme and Aymon d’Avise gave Philip of Savoy the feudal homage for the rupem Arbareti vel Montis Melioris, in which the count authorized them to build it. The castle of Arvier was constructed in the 13th century by the family of the counts of Montmayeur on a natural rise where it still stands today. It was constructed in 1312, according to a different record from the counts of the bailiff of Aosta.
The fief of Montmayeur made up one-sixth of the seigniory of Avise at the start of the fourteenth century. The fief was acquired by the Count of Savoy from Aimonetto in 1309–1310. In 1323, Falcone of Montmayeur had his soldiers occupy the castle. The castle of Montmayeur is listed as a revenue and expense item for the Audiences in 1337 along with being available to the bailiff, the castellan of Châtel-Argent and Montmayeur.
According to one legend, Guy de Feissigny, the head of the jury for the tribunal, was invited to a count of Montmayeur’s home under false pretenses in the early 1500s. As soon as he arrived, the count had him beheaded. The count was involved in a legal dispute with a cousin who had been found guilty by the Chambéry court. As a “document missing from the trial,” the president’s head was then given to the judges in Chambéry. The Count of Montmayeur is said to have fled to the mountains in order to avoid capture, prompting the construction of the Montmayeur fortress.
Featured image: wikipedia
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