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Institute of Continuing Education (ICE)

In 1519 King Francis I of France launched construction of the Château of Chambord in the Loire Valley. This vast, expensive, castellated building featured 426 rooms, 83 staircases and 282 fireplaces. Its purpose? To serve as a hunting lodge for the King as he enjoyed his favourite pastime. The construction of Chambord is one example of the massive architectural commissions of the French monarchy which celebrated their status and position but also highlighted the vast chasm between rich and poor in Renaissance France. This course will consider such commissions of the French court, of Kings, their wives, and their ministers from 1440 to the onset of the French Revolution. It will examine the artistic design of these artworks and structures considering questions of form, style and influence. Using primary source material including contemporary documents and imagery we will also consider the social and historical context for these commissions and their impact on the society beyond the French Court.



Who can book?

Our weekend courses are open to participants over the age of 18 and courses are taught at approximately first-year undergraduate level. No academic qualifications are required and most courses are suitable for students who are new to the subject. Please ensure that you complete any required reading before the course starts to enable you to fully participate.

English language requirements

Teaching is in English (unless a foreign-language course). If your first language is not English, you will need to satisfy yourself that you have the required near-native command of the language to get the maximum benefit from studying with ICE.

Accessibility and additional support for students 

We make every effort to meet the requirements of those students with additional needs. Please let us know about any additional requirements at the time of booking so that we can offer you the support and advice you require before and during your course(s).

You can also refer to our Further information for students with additional requirements section on our website.

COVID-19 Guidance

Please ensure you read our latest guidance and advice regarding COVID-19 found on our Booking terms and conditions page.

Course dates

11 Mar 2022 to 13 Mar 2022

Course duration

1 Weekend

Apply by

28 Feb 2022

Course fee


Accommodation fees

Single room: £65 per night

Double/Twin room £55 per person, per night (2 people sharing)


Institute of Continuing Education
University of Cambridge
CB23 8AQ
United Kingdom

Qualifications / Credits


Course code