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Amboise, street near the castle
Amboise, street near the castle
Coat of arms of Amboise
Coat of arms
Amboise is located in France
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Country France
Region Centre-Val de Loire
Department Indre-et-Loire
Arrondissement Tours
Canton Amboise
 • Mayor (2008–2014) Christian Guyon
Area1 40.65 km2 (15.70 sq mi)
Population (2009)2 12,505
 • Density 310/km2 (800/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 37003 / 37400
Elevation 52–127 m (171–417 ft)
(avg. 58 m or 190 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries. 2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Amboise (pronounced: [ɑ̃bwaːz]) is a commune in the Indre-et-Loire department in central France. It lies on the banks of the Loire River, 17 miles (27 km) east of Tours. Today a small market town, it was once home of the French royal court. The town of Amboise is also only about 11 miles (18 km) away from the historic Château de Chenonceau, situated on the Cher River near the small village of Chenonceaux. Its former name was Ambacia, from the old name of the river and marsh Amasse.


Historical population
Year Pop. ±%
1793 5,659 —    
1800 5,113 −9.6%
1806 5,097 −0.3%
1821 5,276 +3.5%
1831 4,613 −12.6%
1836 4,695 +1.8%
1841 4,715 +0.4%
1846 4,956 +5.1%
1851 4,762 −3.9%
1856 4,433 −6.9%
1861 4,570 +3.1%
1866 4,188 −8.4%
1872 4,216 +0.7%
1876 4,475 +6.1%
1881 4,167 −6.9%
1886 4,592 +10.2%
1891 4,480 −2.4%
1896 4,463 −0.4%
1901 4,538 +1.7%
1906 4,731 +4.3%
1911 4,660 −1.5%
1921 4,625 −0.8%
1926 4,483 −3.1%
1931 4,129 −7.9%
1936 4,236 +2.6%
1946 4,443 +4.9%
1954 6,736 +51.6%
1962 7,953 +18.1%
1968 8,625 +8.4%
1975 10,680 +23.8%
1982 10,857 +1.7%
1990 10,982 +1.2%
1999 11,461 +4.4%
2006 12,691 +10.7%
2009 12,505 −1.5%


The city is famous for the Clos Lucé manor house where Leonardo da Vinci lived (and ultimately died) at the invitation of King Francis I of France, whose Château d'Amboise, which dominates the town, is located just 500 m (1,640 feet) away. The narrow streets contain some good examples of timbered housing.

Just outside the city is the Pagode de Chanteloup, a 44 m (144.4 feet) tall Chinese Pagoda built in 1775 by the Duke of Choiseul. The Pagoda is seven levels high, with each level slightly smaller than the last one. An interior staircase to reach all levels is open to the public.

The Musée de la Poste (in the Hôtel Joyeuse) is a museum tracing the history of the postal delivery service.

A 19th-century fountain by John Oswald of a turtle topped by a teddy bear figure, standing in front of the spot where the markets are held.

On the banks of the Loire River


Timber-framed houses in Amboise.

Clovis I (c. 466–511) and the Visigoths signed a peace treaty of alliance with the Arvernians in 503, which assisted him in his defeat of the Visigothic kingdom in the Battle of Vouillé in 507.

Joan of Arc passed through in 1429 on her way to Orleans to the Battle of Patay.

The Amboise conspiracy was the conspiracy of Condé and the Huguenots in 1560 against Francis II, Catherine de' Medici, and the Guises.

The Edict of Amboise (1563) conceded the free exercise of worship to the Protestants.

The Château at Amboise was home to Mary Stewart, Queen of Scots, for much of her early life, being raised there at the French court of Henry II. She arrived in France from Scotland in 1548, aged six, via the French king's favourite palace at Saint Germain en Laye near Paris, and remained in France until 1561, when she returned to her homeland - sailing up the Firth of Forth to Edinburgh on 15 August that year.

Leonardo da Vinci spent the last years of his life in Amboise. Some of his inventions are still there and have not been removed. Leonardo died in the arms of King Francis I [1] The house has lost some of its original parts, but it still stands today and has a beautiful overlook of the Loire River.

Here was born in 1743 – Louis Claude de Saint-Martin French philosopher, known as Le Philosophe Inconnu. (d. 1803).

Abd el Kader Ibn Mouhi Ad-Din (c. 1807–83) was imprisoned at the Château d'Amboise.

International relations

Twin towns – Sister cities

Amboise is twinned with:

See also


External links