Just remember that the "Ville-haute" is the oldest
Provins. It is located on a rocky outcrop naturally protected in North,
East and the South by the valleys Durteint and Voulzie
rivers, that it overhangs.
Only the Western access, side of the Plain of Brie, has
an artificial system of protection against possible enemy.
Originally, this village was also a military camp had to be
protected by a wall of wood piles. But we have no
archaeological proof. After, with the increase in the
population, the line of the walls were pushed towards the West
until the actual ramparts. The "Ville-haute" fortifications of Provins constitute a
remarkable medieval military architecture of the 12th and 13th
The two doors of
Saint-Jean and of Jouy, giving access to the city, had an
identical protection system out of hopper.
A whole of grooves and hinges remaining follow one another and
indicate that harrows and heavy doors followed one another
after the lowering of the lifting bridge (the drawbridge
appeared only with the 14th century), protecting a door "charretière"
and a pedestrian door. Each one of these two doors was capped
of a higher part, used as a look-out but destroyed during
These two doors
have an equipment external of stones in embossing.
They are linked by
an fortified enclosing wall made up of curtains and many
towers of defence with different forms: hemi-cylindrical,
square, polygonal, out of spurs... alternately. Practically
each one of these towers has its proper name and many are
those which hide beautiful arched rooms of edges or pointed
Porte de Jouy
Porte Saint Jean
The curtains and the towers are reinforced by:
a powerful glacis at their base, allowing to hold the
attackers with good distance for a better monitoring and
in particular to increase the difficulties of the sap
and climbing using the war machines of the time;
a great number of loop-holes learnedly laid out to avoid
the dead angles and facilitate the shooting with the arc
in all directions;
a parapet-walk crenelated passing from towers to
curtains, allowing best watches with the shelter of the
an imposing ditch still remaining dry in Provins.
This defence system was connected by "small walls",
less massive ramparts, to the keep "grosse
tour ", Tour César today, which
was the centre of command.
"the old postcards of the Tour Cesar"