Every admirer of the Alexandre Dumas knows the story of the count of Monte Cristo, a prisoner in the terrible Chateau d'if. Many believe that the fortress was the same fiction, as a story about the main character. Meanwhile, Chateau d'if is really there. He also was reputed to be one of the horrible prisons of its time.

Замок Иф - знаменитая тюрьма с узником, которого там никогда не было
Foto: Darius Huntly / cc

In the sixteenth century flourished robberies and attacks on the port city from the sea. Tired of the endless attacks on Marseille in 1516, French king Francis I decided to build a fortress to defend the city. If the island was only a mile from the shore and could be the perfect place for an impregnable Bastion. But think of the king lasted 8 years, and only in 1531 the construction of the castle was completed.

A distinguished military engineer of that time Sebastien de Vauban, who led the construction of one of the buildings in the castle, claimed that the fortress was built in haste and in which case will not stand the attacks of the enemy. But, fortunately, not destined to perform the function for which it was built. No one tried to grab her.

Замок Иф - знаменитая тюрьма с узником, которого там никогда не было
Foto: Stiller Beobachter / cc

A half-century Chateau d'if stood unclaimed, until in 1580 it was turned into a prison. The location of facilities, could not be better suited for the dungeon: the sea, sharp rocks. From there it was impossible to escape. The first prisoner of the Chateau d'if became a Chevalier Anselm, sentenced for conspiracy against the king. But finally, he stayed not long, because the man is soon found strangled.

For two centuries of existence of the prison, it visited about 3,500 prisoners. The convenience of cameras directly depended on how much the prisoner was willing to pay for it. Wealthy prisoners were in the upper rooms with Windows which the sea was visible, and beggars were sent to the dungeons without light, called "the pit".

Замок Иф - знаменитая тюрьма с узником, которого там никогда не было
Foto: Karen Bryan / cc

It is in this dungeon "put" his prisoner Alexander Dumas. In the Chateau d'if you can see a sign that says "Camera Count of Monte Cristo". When the keepers of the castle hinted that the character was fictional, they calmly retort, saying, in England also came to the home of Sherlock Holmes. Tourists enjoy gazing at the eerie dungeon.

In the camera you can see the pass, where the count of Monte Cristo "met" with the Abbe Faria. By the way, the Abbot was not a fictional character. This man mastered the technique of hypnosis and oratory skills. He was imprisoned for his freedom of speech.

Замок Иф - знаменитая тюрьма с узником, которого там никогда не было
Foto: Darius Huntly / cc

In the XIX century Chateau d'if practically ceased to use as a prison, and in 1890 it was made available to tourists.