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Biron Castle, Dordogne: Detail, Medieval donjon
The Château de Biron is a castle in the French commune of Biron in the valley of the Lède, a tributary of the Lot River in Périgord. It was the château from which the Gontaut-Biron took their name, being their seat from the twelfth century. Biron was seized by the Cathars in 1211, retaken by Simon IV de Montfort the following year. The Plantagenets held it at times during the 14th and 15th century. Biron was largely erected as a duché-pairie in 1598, for Charles de Gontaut, created duc de Biron. The present château bears additions over the centuries that make a picturesque ensemble: a twelfth century keep, sixteenth-century living quarters, a chapel and vaulted kitchens. The commune purchased the Château de Biron in 1978. Since 1928, the Château de Biron has been listed as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture.