Sunday's excursion took us an hour north of Paris to the town of Pierrefonds near Compiègne. The Château de Pierrefonds was built in the 15th century by the Orléans family, dismantled in the 17th, and then reconstructed in the 19th century on the orders of Napoleon III. The architect Viollet-le-Duc was engaged to restore the château. He produced more a work of invention than restoration. He imagined how the castle ought to have been, rather than basing his work on the strict history of the building. The result is a "modern" medieval castle.
Here's what the castle looked like before the reconstruction.
And here is what it looks like today: