historic buildings for sale in france between the champagne and burgundy regions

A 13th century construction, once the chapterhouse oven for Langres cathedral,
between the Champagne and Burgundy regions
Langres, HAUTE-MARNE champagne-ardennes 52200 FR


2¾ hours from Paris via the excellent A5 motorway and an hour from Dijon, where the borders of four historic regions, Burgundy, Franche-Comté, Champagne and Lorraine, meet. Langres, standing solidly on its promontory, resembles a true-life acropolis. Its circle of fortifications surround an urban centre, two-thirds of the buildings of which were constructed between the 16th and 18th centuries, making it the biggest of its kind in Europe.


Founded in 834, Langres chapterhouse was composed of canons living together. These ecclesiastical dignitaries elected the bishop and looked after the diocese’s property should the post be vacant.
Unlike monks, the canons of Saint-Mammès cathedral were proprietors of numerous estates obtained under the terms of negotiations with the bishop and a source of great income. This enabled them to follow a policy of construction around the cathedral, such that they could leave the communal buildings and live in superb mansion houses.
The current canonical district was the seat of ecclesiastical power.
This building stands on the corner of Rue-du-Four-au-Chapitre and Place-de-l'Abbé-Cordier with the multi-coloured glazed roof of Saint-Mammès cathedral in the distance.

The chapterhouse oven

This oven was given to the chapterhouse in 1252 by the bishop, Duke of Langres, Gui-de-Rochefort.
The canons reconstructed it in 1263 so as to leave its management to a baker, separate from the episcopal jurisdiction.
Spanning two levels and an attic floor, it is constructed from dressed stone and topped with a sprocket roof, covered with flat tiles.
It has bays on three of its sides but the facade facing Rue-du-Four has the most openings, notably the main, basket-handle arch door. On a corner, the sculpture of a small lion with a wavy head pays tribute to Gui-de-Rochefort by displaying a part of his coat-of-arms.
Two large, wooden garage doors open on to the square.

Ground floor
This level features nine cross-ribbed vaults resting on four octagonal pillars in the centre and twelve wall corbels.
The capitals are enhanced with geometric motifs or stylised plants.
The paving covering the floor was probably laid on top of the original flagstones.
This area has been partitioned by a brick wall in order to create two garages, opening on to the square. It could easily be removed to give it back its initial layout.
A stone fireplace and a tank, recuperating rainwater, are still in place.

First floor
There is no longer a stairway providing access to the first floor. This level is divided into three rooms, one of which contains the vestiges of a vast fireplace and its flue.
The openings are closed by wooden shutters.
A temporary stairway goes up to the attic, the flooring of which is shored up in places.
The roof appears to be weathertight.

Our opinion

The chapterhouse oven is probably the oldest utility building in Langres. A request has been made for its classification on the French Supplementary Historic Monument List. Old stone enthusiasts have here a fascinating place to investigate: the origin, evolution and organisation of the construction are far from being perfectly clear. Its full restoration is of great interest especially as its site, in the centre of an eminently tourist town, immediately validates a commercial or artistic project or even a plan to create a splendid, reasonably-sized residence.

Exclusive sale

110 000 €
Honoraires à la charge du vendeur

Voir le Barème d'Honoraires

Reference 873031

Land registry surface area 168 m2
Main building surface area 288 m2

Regional representative
Aube, Marne Region

Florence Fornara       +33 1 42 84 80 85



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NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.

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