Castles in England

The castles in England began when William the Conqueror, also William of Normandy, overcame King Harold Godwinson of England, conquered and took the crown.

He built castles as protection for his nobles against uprisings by the people. After all, who wants to be ruled by a foreign invader?

William built the famous Tower of London as the home for his family. It continued to be used as such after he died, for a while, then it started being used as a treasury, armory, and finally, it’s most common known use, a prison.

The most common style of castle building was the Motte-and-Bailey style. The ‘Motte’ was the inner building or keep, which was built on a man-made mound. The keep would be the living space for the noble and his family. The buildings, stables and walls around the keep were the ‘Bailey.’

Around the whole wall was a moat, which was used for both water supply and protection. A drawbridge could be lowered over the moat. An iron portcullis made of bars usually was in front of the drawbridge.

All castles have watchtowers and guards patrolling the walls to prevent a surprise attack. All have large food storages in case of a siege.

These castles are beautiful, detailed and impressive. Huge yet inviting, they stand as landmarks, ones that are the only visible remnant left of Middle Ages buildings.

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