03 March 2015

Noyers Houses (4) — Kamato

The text here is not mine; it's a translation of a web page referenced at the bottom of the post.
 “This Renaissance-era house was built in the late 15th century. The rooms on the ground floor provided shelter for pilgrims who were walking the trail to Santiago de Compostela, as evidenced by a carved scallop shell just above the front door and the Greek motto « Kamato » just below. The motto means "to take the trouble" or "make the effort" — to succeed "by dint of labor".

“The Kamato mansion was also the House of Justice for the bailiwick of the lords of Noyers. A sword of justice, carved over one of the windows of the courtyard, symbolizes the building's function. The Great Hall of Justice occupies the entire second level. It is accessed via a staircase in courtyard turret. Some of its ceiling beams are elaborately carved, and royal fleurs de lys are engraved into many of the floor tiles.

“The street-side façade, built of carved stone blocks, has elaborate mullioned windows and a rectangular door with stone moldings that was decorated with an oculus window in the 17th century and flanked by scrolls. The corners of the windows are decorated with plant motifs. A stonemason's mark, the letter P, is visible on the facade... The Kamato, located on Rue de la Madeleine at the corner of the Place du Grenier à Sel, is not open to the public.”


  1. Noyers seems full of wonderful archi... I love the scale of the ground floor windows.

  2. Fabulous buildiing, fascinating story.

  3. HOLY COW! This town is a real find.

  4. Of course, Greek not Japanese as I mentioned in a previous comment.
    Beautiful leaded windows. Somehow comforting to know that the
    pilgrimage to Compostela continues to this day.

  5. Beautiful building -- shame it isn't open to the public. The scallop shell is really quite subtle. Especially when compared to that 17th century oculus window above it.

  6. Wonderful history. I wonder if the original entrance was down a few steps, as shown, or if the street level has risen over the centuries.

    A friend from Boston walked to Compostela last summer, although I believe she started in very southern France or even Spain itself.

  7. Did you find the hole in the ground that is the ancient prison cell?


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