Mont-Saint-Michel Work-In-Progress – The Gates and Barbican

 

Here’s a couple of pages I (mostly) finished inking to give you an idea of what this thing was going to look like. These are the outer gates and barbican.

The outermost entrance, the “Porte de l’Avancée,” is on the far left by the guardhouse. To its right is the “Porte du Boulevard.” And finally, for those especially persistent assailants, there’s the “Porte du Roi,” or the “King’s Gate.” This is protected by a ten-foot ditch crossed by two drawbridges– one for the main gate and one for the postern beside it– plus a portcullis and two sets of steel doors.

Here’s what the inside of the gatehouse looks like. The big thing on the ceiling is the back end of the drawbridge arms with a big counterweight in the middle. Pulling that down brings up both drawbridges. The release for the portcullis is in the room above. Dropping a big, sharp hunk on steel on someone’s head is a classic French move.

If you’ve looked at any maps of Mont-Saint-Michel, you might notice that there are some buildings missing from inside the barbican (the triangular wall). Those are fairly new and I’m removing them. This is going to be a little bit of a mish-mash of the Mont at different points in history. I’m including two postern gates in the east curtain wall which were bricked up a few centuries back. I’m also drawing in the “Grand Degré,” an inner gatehouse between the town and the abbey. It was dismantled, but I have diagrams of it from an old French book and it’s pretty cool, so I’m putting it in the map. I’m also including a windmill that used to be on the westernmost tower and a few other things. There isn’t enough information for me to roll everything back to the middle ages, but I’ll do what I can.

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