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types of castles

They are considered to be the beginnings of the great castle age. However, castles were still relevant as a status symbol – a way of demonstrating wealth, strength and power to the rest of the world. This ended the building of castles as fortresses but, the building and architectural techniques were still used to build large structures. This created a compound encircled by stone fortification, instead of a free-standing stone keep of the kind found in rectangular stone keep castles. These structures differed from their eastern coun… Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. NEVER MISS A POST For the most part it is reasonably easy to achieve this breakdown in castle types because they are something that changed over the course of centuries due to improvements in architecture, masonry, mathematics, and other skills. The outer walls were lower than the inner walls (to allow archers on the inner walls to fire at attackers over the outer walls). These earthworks could be based on a pre-existing natural hill or be manmade, and generally varied from around 3 metres to 30 metres in height, and from 30 to 90 metres in diameter. As one wall looked like it was going to be breached, the defenders could retreat to the next wall back. It is important to note that while these different types of castles developed and changed over the medieval period, all three kinds were being built and used throughout – for example, motte-and-bailey fortifications persisted into the late middle ages, despite the development of stone keep and concentric castles. Only powerful military orders in the Crusader States, such as the Templars and Hospitallers (who built Belvoir Castle in modern-day Israel), or great kings, could muster the resources to construct such ambitious fortifications. Norman Castles The first significant European castles with stone keeps. POLICIES • TERMS AND PRIVACY, CONTACT US Your email address will not be published. Across Europe, in the medieval period, there were a huge number of different kinds of castles, with a very wide variety of form and function – from the simplest wooden defensive construction to grand stone fortifications designed to hold territory and boost the prestige of powerful lords and monarchs. Part of the defense of the outer ward is a moat. Historian Charles Coulson states that the accumulation of wealth and resources, such as food, led to the need for defensive structures. Other Types Of Castles: Square Keep Castles Round Keep Castles Shell Keep Castles Castles with Square Towers Castles with Round Towers Castles with a Gatehouse Here we look at castles around the world. The Rectangular Keep was the early types of castles that we are more familiar with today. During my travels I was fascinated by the history and beauty of castles and I created this space to share my passion with you. Find out more about motte and bailey castles. A castle could almost be like a living thing where an early motte and bailey site was torn down and a keep was built on it. More than one million copies sold worldwide — now revised and updated! The concept of the castle itself emerged in the 9th and 10th centuries, around the time of the collapse of the Carolingian empire, a period of increased fighting between local lords, although it has also been argued that castles were built to defend against Viking raids across Northern Europe. The context of the development of concentric castles is particularly interesting and has been debated extensively – it has been argued that this type of castle arose as a result of advances in siege technology in the Crusader States of the Levant, as a reaction to the creation of more powerful siege engines. Sometimes a Motte and Bailey was upgraded into a stone shell keep. During that time many castles... 2. In practice there were variations on this basic motte-and-bailey layout – for example, some castles had multiple baileys, such as Warkworth castle which featured and inner and outer bailey. The walls of these castles could not so easily be undermined either, so could be built far thinner and lighter than the massively thick walls of rectangular stone keeps. Thanks to their enormous size and complexity, concentric castles were fantastically expensive to build – as such, lords and barons simply did not have the resources to build them. Motte and Bailey Castles. amzn_assoc_title = "Medieval stuff on amazon"; Your email address will not be published. However, the influence of much earlier Roman and Byzantine fortifications can also be seen in concentric castles, as they generally utilised curtain walls punctuated by towers or bastions. The focus now was less on defense and more on lavish living quarters or centers for governing. The multi-layered fortifications and great size of concentric castles also allowed for larger garrisons, as well as additional storage and other buildings. all rights reserved A motte-and-bailey castle consisted of a motte (a large mound of earth) … Restormel Castle in England is a fine example of this type of castle. These moats are in themselves further concentric lines of defense. The Motte-and-Bailey style of castles is a bit different from what you would normally think of as a... 3. And the soil removed from the ditches was used to build up the Motte and to form a berm around the ditches. It is an expression of a very important technique in defense - that of concentric lines of defense. They were generally far larger than motte-and-bailey and stone keep castles, as they incorporated multiple layers of walled enclosures, usually with inner and outer curtain walls. They were built of stone and tended to have very high and thick walls. Access from the bailey to the motte typically took the form of a bridge, or steps cut into the motte itself. amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon"; Then a stockade fence and a keep were built. 13 Easy DIY Halloween Decorations – Ideas and Inspiration, 10 Creative DIY Star Wars Christmas Holiday Crafts, Christmas in Germany: Facts About German Christmas Traditions, TT Rockstars Tips: How to Get Better at Times Tables Rock Stars. We use cookies on our website to give you the most relevant experience by remembering your preferences and repeat visits. The living space was located on the top floors and the kitchens were on the lower floors. A good example of this can be seen at Krak des Chevaliers in Syria. In any case, the Motte-and-bailey castle really came to prominence in the 11th century. Often the keep atop the motte would also be surrounded by a wall, built around the edges of the flat top of the motte itself. Finally, the 12th and 13th centuries saw the emergence of concentric castles – these were made up of towers or bastions connected by curtain walls in a concentric shaped compound, and consisted of two or more such curtain wall compounds arranged one inside the other, giving the castle multiple lines of defence. The size of the motte itself dictated the size of the fortification that could be built on top of it: a small motte would only be able to support a relatively simple wooden keep, but a large earth mound could hold a heavier stone building. (Find out more about concentric castles). Concentric castles were made up of a series of circular walls. DK's classic look at the history and structure of castles, now reissued with a CD and wall chart! amzn_assoc_region = "US"; This type of medieval castle soon replaced the Motte and Bailey castles as it offered a better form of defence. The Concentric Castle 13th - 14th Centuries. The design of castles evolved over time as builders responded to developments in military strategy and improvements in technology. The outer wall also served to protect the inner wall from enemy siege engines. The bailey could contain many different buildings depending upon its size, such as stables, barracks, kitchens, a chapel, stores, workshops, and a hall. And it is believed that there were as many as 500 of them just in Great Britain. Occasionally an additional protective wall was constructed around the base of the motte. These cookies do not store any personal information. However, despite the dizzying diversity in medieval castles, there were three primary types of castles: Motte-and-bailey castles, stone keep castles, and concentric castles. Larger keeps could be divided into many smaller rooms and would contain bedrooms, kitchens and halls, as well as other luxuries. The steep slopes on which Krak des Chevaliers is built protect the castle from the attack on all sides except one – here the walls are thicker and the defences more formidable. But generally they couldn't be constructed on top of a motte because of the tremendous weight of the stone. The earliest fortifications originated in the Fertile Crescent, the Indus Valley, Egypt, and China where settlements were protected by large walls. amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; The Rectangular Keep was the early types of castles that we are more familiar with today. A moat often encircled the entire castle, providing another obstacle for the attackers to overcome. amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart"; The motte itself was an earth mound, which was flattened on top to make space for the construction of a keep. The most famous example of the Keep is the Tower of London. As weapons (particularly gunpowder weapons like the cannon) grew better, more powerful and more accurate the castle fortress became less and less effective. But they were a natural extension of the traditional fortress castle and many of the fortress style castles were transformed and upgraded into palaces and living quarters. New castles, however, stopped being built, as the rich opted to construct grand palaces instead. The keep was usually accessed by steps leading up to the first floor. However, these buildings were still incredibly strong, with their imposing height and their thick, immovable walls. Furthermore, the intramural towers in the curtain walls could also be used to fire from, and if large enough could even house trebuchets. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. The bailey was a compound overlooked by the motte and was surrounded by a palisade, a wall made of wooden stakes, and sometimes protected by a ditch as well. These curtain walls consisted of several towers or bastions connected by sections of the wall. The space inside the shell keep was used to house buildings, which were usually constructed against the walls to allow space for a courtyard in the very centre of the castle. Good examples of this are the keep, the surrounding fence (which in later castles were stone), the Bridges and the gatehouse. amzn_assoc_linkid = "4fd974a531137fed5834e17a4bc293bb"; Cathar Castles Distinctive hilltop castles of the Languedoc ; Japanese Castles This series of defenses was a very effective means of protection because attackers had to break through each line of defense one at a time. However, despite the dizzying diversity in medieval castles, there were three primary types of castles: Motte-and-bailey castles, stone keep castles, and concentric castles. The keep was then surrounded by a thick stone curtain wall. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. amzn_assoc_asins = "B01M34N9P3,B0163BFNI8,B01EYBLLEE,B00H8CQYT4"; Copyright©2007-2018 Kalif Publishing - All Rights Reserved |. Motte and Bailey Castle - This type of castle isn't what we typically think of when we think "castle" but the Motte and Bailey is the first type of European castle. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); This article takes a look at the various types of castles that were built. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. The Palace or Royal Quarters - 14th -16th Centuries. The Rectangular Keep ( also called a donjon or dungeon) 11th and 12th Centuries.

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