Castles: Seen By The Light Of A Thousand Candles



"Feudal society was defined by the castle, and was reflected in its development from a wooden defense structure to a stone architectural complex, with room for many houses within its walls." Castles emerged as part of Europe’s feudalisation, perhaps as early as the 9th century. Frequently situated at key locations, castles were strongholds that provided bases from which squadrons of knights could ride out to attack an enemy but were also "a center for administering justice and dispensing hospitality." The castle was not just a fortress but also a residence and home, a different concept from the Anglo-Saxon and Carolingian communal fortified burhs and purely military Tudor palaces. Many ...

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and (most dangerously) burning, so the benefits of stone rapidly gained popularity. Some hedged a little with structures of stone and timber together, but many had their castles built completely of stone.
Castles could consist of a tower set atop a hill or mote (15 to 30 feet high) surrounded by a wall at the edge of the top of the mote and a wet or dry ditch at the bottom. Natural hills were favored for this as artificial mounds tended not to support the intense weight of the stone buildings and walls. The wall was a timber palisade or a stone shell wall or outer curtain wall (often with a wallwalk), and the entire tower, wall, and motte structure was a shell keep in the motte-and-bailey style.
This shell wall separated the castle into two regions. The outer ward/bailey (from ballium) was the area between the inner curtain wall and the shell wall, which contained the general retainers (quarters, stables, stores, forge, well, etc.). The inner ward/bailey was the area between ...

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curtain. Often with very elaborate and high wooden ceilings, the hall was usually an enormous room that could fit hundreds. This very often served as a courtroom, where the lord would perform his administrative and judicial duties, and was where all meals were taken. After the meals, the tables would be collapsed and moved to provide room for dancing and later on, servants and lesser guests would sleep on the rushes that were strewn on the floors. Sometimes, as at Chepstow, the hall took the place of the keep, having two stories, with storage in the vaulted ground floor and the hall and chamber in the hall-keep style on the first floor side-by-side. The public nature of the Frankish, ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 11/1/2004 04:02:48 AM
Category: World History
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 2064
Pages: 8

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