Cayo Gate


Cayo Gate, better known as the Palace Gate, is a national monument. They are located on the street of the same name, on the eastern side of the Cathedral of St. Andrew the First-Called. The construction of the gate was conceived to protect the palace, and they also acted as a triumphal arch in honor of the victory of King Charles VIII during the Italian Wars.

Today, the gates are a decoration of the city, which tourists willingly come to see. The architecture of the Palace Gate is very interesting and original. This is the architecture of the Gothic style with an admixture of elements of the Renaissance.

The facade of the gate is crowned with medallions, mounted loopholes and dormers. Pointed turrets make a special impression, which together with the spire reach a height of 35 meters. Due to damage to the facade, its bas-reliefs were restored in 1822 and transferred to the Aquitaine Museum for conservation.

Location: France, Bordeaux, Rue de la Porte Cailhau

Coordinates: N 44.83870800, east -0.56841700

Porte Cailhau - Cayo Gate

GPS coordinates: 44 ° 50 & # 39 20 & # 39 & # 39 NW, 0 ° 34 & # 39 07 & # 39 & # 39 W

Address: Rue Porte de Cailhau, 33000 Bordeaux

The ancient tower, which served as a city gate. It is currently a historical monument and a model of the transitional Gothic-Renaissance style. Located in the southeastern part of the city center on the street of the same name in front of Palace Square next to the Garonne embankment.

The Cayo Gate was erected in 1495 in honor of the victory of King Charles VIII over the Italians at the battle of Fornovo. There are two versions regarding the origin of the name of the gate. The first is from the Gascon "stone", "cobblestone". The second, most likely, is from the noble Bordeaux clan Cayo, whose members in the 13-15 centuries. several times were mayors of Bordeaux.

For several centuries, the gate served as the main entrance to the city and a triumphal arch. Immediately behind them stood the palace of the Dukes of Hyeni, which since the 15th century served as the parliament building of Bordeaux. Therefore, the gate is also called the Palace Gate. But at the beginning of the 19th century. as a result of several fires, the palace was destroyed and Palace Square was formed in its place. And in 1883, the gates of Cayo were declared a historical monument.

Cayo Gate is a 35-meter tower with a portal, which now stands between two identical buildings, built much later, but decorated similarly to them. The tower in plan has a rectangular shape with rounded corners. From an architectural point of view, Cayo’s tower is made in the style of transition from Gothic to Renaissance. Its general appearance, teeth along the perimeter, a portal are inherited from the Middle Ages. At the same time, a roof with elegant pointed pedestals, canopies over niches and other decorative elements are already characteristic of the Renaissance.

On the river side, the gates are decorated with statues of Charles VIII, John the Theologian and Archbishop of Bordeaux Cardinal d & # 39Epernay, who also participated in the battle of Fornovo. From the side of the city is an image of a lily flower on a shield supported by two angels. Here you can also see a preserved short piece of the city wall adjacent to the gate.

Interestingly, there are loopholes on the Cayo Tower on both sides - in order to defend themselves both from external attacks and from possible uprisings in the city itself.

Photo and description

The name of the gate of Cayo (or Kaelo) has two possible origins. According to one version, it came from the Gascon word calhaus (“cobblestone”), and according to the second - from the surname of the noble family of Clello, several members of which even became mayors of Bordeaux in the XIII-XV centuries.

Cayo Gate is a short walk from St. Andrew the First-Called Cathedral. In the Middle Ages, this gate was the main entrance to the city. The road on which they stood led to the palace in which the dukes' residence was located, and then there were meetings of the city parliament. At the end of the 16th and the beginning of the 18th centuries, the palace burned several times. At the turn of the 19th century, it was decided not to restore it, but to finally demolish and build in its place an area called Palace Square.

The Cayo Gate was built to commemorate the victory that King Charles VIII won in 1495 over the Italian army at the battle of Fornovo. The gate is decorated with several statues, among which there is a statue of Charles VIII. Also next to the gate are statues of John the Theologian and Archbishop of Bordeaux Cardinal d’Epernay, who was also present at the battle and was in the royal headquarters.

Despite the obvious signs of a defensive structure that are present in the appearance of the gate (loopholes, dormers, scalloped protrusions and lattices), in their image you can see more elegant architectural decorations - decorative arches, graceful turrets, a medallion in the form of a coat of arms with lilies, which support two angels. The architectural style of the Cayo Gate combines the signs of Gothic and Renaissance. The height of the gate along with the spire on the central turret is 35 meters. In 1822, the restoration of the gate was carried out, during which the bas-reliefs that could not be restored were removed and placed in the Aquitaine Museum.

In 1883, the Cayo Gate was marked with the status of a national historical monument.