Evidence of its existence as a lookout point can be traced back to the 12th century.
In the 14th century the English Black Prince set up rear base here during his sacking of the outskirts of Carcassonne and his first assaults on the medieval city – before giving up, beaten by its defences. Vexed by this defeat, he vented his anger by razing the lower town!
The païchère (water dam) on the river, the pressure pipeline and the ruins of workshops show the intensive weaving activity on the banks of the Orbiel at the end of the 17th century.
At that time, the bishopric – proprietor of the domain – gave Paul Riquet a strip of land required in the construction of the Canal du Midi. In return, Paul Riquet named the structure that borders the property the Bishop’s Lock (l’Écluse de l’Evêque).
From the end of the 18th century Fourtou was more of a country leisure estate than a real castle.
At the beginning of the following century the BARBÈS family settled there and this is where the young Armand spent his youth before entering the political and social fray. Fierce republican and ardently anti-monarchy, he died in exile at La Haye. His ashes were repatriated to the land of his childhood, in the monument that can be found at the highest point of the domain.
The domain turned into a wine producing business at the end of the 19th century and the buildings have existed in their present form since then.