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ségur

ségur The famous French noble family had a significant influence on viticulture in Bordeaux out. The first in the long row was out Pauillac Notary Jacques de Ségur (+1691), who served as a councilor in the Bordeaux Parliament. In 1670, his wife Jeanne de Gasq brought the Seigneurie (manorial estate) Lafite into the marriage as a dowry, which then became the Premier Cru Classé winery Château Lafite-Rothschild developed.

He subsequently expanded his vineyard ownership until 1680 by planting new plants and buying in vineyards. Among them was a plot called "Clos de Mouton", from which the Château Mouton-Rothschild emerged. His son Alexandre de Ségur (1674-1716) married Marie-Thérèse de Clausel in 1695, who was the dowry of the Premier Cru Classé winery Château Latour, brought the entire southern part of Pauillac and another winery as a dowry.

Their son Marquis Nicolas-Alexandre de Ségur (1695-1755) became President of the Parliament of Bordeaux (picture). Through his marriage in 1730 he came into the possession of the Château Calon-Ségur, He also owned other vineyards in Médoc and Graves, The probably most famous representative of the family thus called a true wine-growing empire his own. A total of three of the then famous in 1855 Bordeaux Classification wineries classified as Premiers Crus belonged to his possession. However, it should be noted that the sizes and limits of the companies at that time did not of course correspond exactly to those of today. The Marquis also recognized the very different terroir by Lafite and Mouton, and made a separation.

Thanks to improved viticulture techniques, the first successes began in the 1720s. Following the example of Arnaud III. Pontac (1599-1682) dated Château Haut-Brion The Marquis marketed the wines under the Château name, which was not a matter of course at the time. The wines were mainly exported to England and were extremely popular there. Through the Marshal Richelieu (1696-1788) the Lafite wine later came to the court of King Louis XV. (1710-1774). As a result, the marquis became a welcome guest at court. One day he was asked by the king about the beautiful gems that adorn his skirt as buttons. To the general astonishment, the marquis admitted that the alleged jewels were only carefully cut pebbles from his vineyards. The king then awarded him the title "Prince des Vignes" (Prince of Vineyards).

The viticulture income was considerable - the two wineries Château Lafite and Château Latour alone produced 100,000 livres annually. Even in a bad year, there were 272,000 livres of income compared to just 34,000 livres of expenditure, according to records received. The Marquis left two million livres after his death, but no male heir. The extensive estates were divided among his four daughters and their children. Among other things, Lafite and Latour were separated at the time, even if the property remained in the family and was looked after by the same administrator until 1785.

Comte Marie-Alexandre-Nicolas de Ségur, the son of the eldest daughter of the "Prince des Vignes", inherited the Château Lafite. However, he was nowhere near as business-minded as his grandfather and slipped into financial problems due to his passion for gaming. High gambling debts forced him to sell the Château Lafite in 1784. It went to a relative, Nicolas Pierre de Pichard, first president of the Bordeaux Parliament. This was the last owner from the Ségur family. In the turmoil of the French Revolution, he first lost his property in 1794 and finally his head under the guillotine.

After that there were still six owners, until finally the property was auctioned to Baron James de in 1868 Rothschild (1792-1868) went from the French family branch and now Château Lafite-Rothschild was called. The Mouton part was probably sold to the Baron Joseph de Brane by the Ségur family as early as 1725 and finally came into the possession of Baron Nathaniel de Rothschild (1812-1870) from the English family branch in 1853. This now called it Château Mouton-Rothschild, Two other family goods were sold in 1810 and named by the new owner Château Phélan-Ségur united. The Château Latour The Ségur family remained the last winery until 1963. Descendants of the family still sit on the board of directors of the Société Civile du Vignoble de Château Latour.

Nicolas-Alexandre de Ségur: Public Domain , Link

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