Castillo

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Para obtener una lista de todos los castillos, consulte la lista de los castillos . De estructuras similares, pero no vinculados en Japón, consulte castillo japonés .
Un gran castillo en una península rocosa por encima de una llanura. Está dominada por una torre rectangular de elevarse por encima de un edificio principal con techo de pizarra empinadas. Las paredes son de color rosa y cubierto con un patrón escultórico. Hay una variedad de torres y los detalles.
Alcázar de Segovia en España
Un castillo de planta cuadrada rodeada por un foso lleno de agua. Tiene torres redondas de esquina y un aspecto imponente.
Bodiam Castle , en Inglaterra, rodeado por una llena de agua foso .

Un castillo (del latín castellum) es un tipo de fortificados estructura construida en Europa y el Medio Oriente durante la Edad Media europea por la nobleza . Los estudiosos debaten el alcance de la palabra el castillo, pero por lo general consideran que es la residencia privada fortificada de un señor o noble. Esto es distinto de un palacio , que no está fortificada, de una fortaleza , que no siempre era una residencia de la nobleza, y de una ciudad fortificada, que fue una defensa pública - aunque hay muchas similitudes entre este tipo de construcción. El uso del término ha variado con el tiempo y se ha aplicado a las estructuras tan diversas como castros y casas de campo. Durante los aproximadamente 900 años que los castillos fueron construidos se tomó en un gran número de formas con muchas características diferentes, aunque algunos, como muros cortina y arrowslits , eran muy comunes.

A la innovación europea, los castillos se originó en los siglos noveno y décimo, después de la caída del Imperio Carolingio resultado en su territorio se divide entre los señores y príncipes individuales. Estos nobles construyeron castillos para controlar el área inmediatamente circundante, y se estructura ofensiva y defensiva, sino que proporcionan una base desde la cual podría ser lanzado redadas, así como la protección de los enemigos. A pesar de sus orígenes militares a menudo se destacó en los estudios de castillo, las estructuras también sirvieron como centros de administración y los símbolos del poder. Castillos urbanos fueron utilizados para el control de la población local y las rutas importantes del viaje, y los castillos rurales se encuentra a menudo cerca de las características que eran esenciales para la vida en la comunidad, tales como las fábricas y las tierras fértiles.

Muchos castillos fueron construidos originalmente de la tierra y la madera, pero tenían sus defensas reemplazado más tarde por la piedra. Los primeros castillos a menudo explotados defensas naturales, y carecía de características tales como torres y arrowslits y se basó en una central de mantener . A finales del siglo 13 y principios del 12, una aproximación científica a la defensa del castillo surgió. Esto condujo a la proliferación de torres, con un énfasis en que flanquean el fuego . Muchos castillos nuevos o poligonal se basó en la defensa concéntricos - varias etapas de la defensa dentro de sí que podría funcionar todos al mismo tiempo aprovechar al máximo la potencia de fuego del castillo. Estos cambios en la defensa se ??han atribuido a una mezcla de tecnología castillo de los cruzados , como el enriquecimiento concéntricos , y la inspiración de las defensas anteriores, como los fuertes romanos . No todos los elementos de la arquitectura de los castillos eran de naturaleza militar, y los dispositivos tales como fosos evolucionado desde su objetivo original de defensa en símbolos de poder. Algunos grandes castillos había largas y sinuosas enfoques destinados a impresionar y dominan su paisaje.

A pesar de la pólvora fue introducida en Europa en el siglo 14, no afectó significativamente la construcción del castillo hasta el siglo 15, cuando la artillería se convirtió en lo suficientemente potente como para romper las paredes de piedra. Mientras castillos continuó siendo construido hasta bien entrado el siglo 16, las nuevas técnicas para hacer frente a fuego de cañón mejorado hizo lugares incómodos e indeseables para vivir. Como resultado, los castillos de verdad entró en decadencia y fueron reemplazados por los fuertes de artillería con ningún papel en la administración civil, y casas de campo que eran indefendibles. A partir del siglo 18, hubo un renovado interés en los castillos, con la construcción de castillos simulacro, que forma parte de un romántico renacimiento de la arquitectura gótica , pero no tenían fines militares.

Contenido

Definición

Etimología

A mantener visto de un río, se levantan detrás de una puerta. La torre del homenaje es grande, de planta cuadrada, y cuenta con cuatro torres en las esquinas, tres cuadrados y la primera ronda, todo coronado por cúpulas de plomo
El Norman "Torre Blanca", el mantener de la Torre de Londres , es un ejemplo de todos los usos de un castillo: la defensa de la ciudad, una residencia y un lugar de refugio en tiempos de crisis.

El castillo de la palabra se deriva del latín castellum palabra que es un diminutivo de la palabra castrum, que significa "lugar fortificado". El Inglés Antiguo castillo, francés castillo , castillo español, italiano castello, y una serie de otras palabras en otros idiomas también se derivan de castellum. [1] El castillo palabra se introdujo en Inglés poco antes de la conquista normanda, para referirse a este tipo de edificio, que entonces era nuevo a Inglaterra. [2]

Características que definen

En sus términos más simples, la definición de un castillo aceptada entre los investigadores es "una residencia fortificada privado". [3] Esto contrasta con las fortificaciones anteriores, como la anglosajona burhs y ciudades amuralladas , como Constantinopla y Antioquía en el Oriente Medio, los castillos se No defensas comunes, pero fueron construidos y propiedad de los locales feudales señores, para sí mismos o por su monarca. [4] El feudalismo era la relación entre un señor y sus vasallos , donde, a cambio de servicio militar, que el Señor conceda la tierra vasallo y esperar lealtad. [5] En el siglo 20, hubo una tendencia a mejorar la definición de un castillo mediante la inclusión del criterio de la propiedad feudal, por lo que atar los castillos de la época medieval, sin embargo, esto no refleja necesariamente la terminología utilizada en la época medieval. Durante la Primera Cruzada (1096-1099) el franco ejércitos encontrado asentamientos amurallados y fortalezas que de manera indiscriminada a que se refiere como castillos, pero que no serían considerados como tales en la definición moderna. [3]

Un castillo, ve al final de una larga avenida, iluminado de color rosa por la puesta del sol. El castillo ofrece una impresión de enorme tamaño, y tiene una imponente con sus torres gemelas y la puerta de entrada, a la izquierda, una gran ronda mantener.
Castillo de Windsor en Inglaterra, fue construido como una fortificación de la conquista normanda , y hoy es una de las principales residencias oficiales de la reina Isabel II del Reino Unido .

Castillos sirvieron una variedad de propósitos, el más importante de los cuales eran militares, administrativas y nacionales. Así como estructuras defensivas, los castillos también herramientas ofensivas que podría ser utilizado como base de operaciones en territorio enemigo. Castillos fueron establecidas por los invasores normandos de Inglaterra, tanto para propósitos defensivos y para pacificar a los habitantes del país. [6] Como Guillermo el Conquistador avanzado a través de Inglaterra, posiciones fortificadas clave para asegurar la tierra que había tomado. Entre 1066 y 1087, estableció 36 castillos como el Castillo de Warwick , que utilizó para protegerse de la rebelión en los Midlands Inglés . [7] [8] A finales de la Edad Media, castillos tienden a perder su importancia militar debido a la llegada de poderosos cañones y las fortificaciones permanentes de artillería; [9] , como resultado, los castillos se volvió más importante como residencias y las declaraciones de la energía. [10] Un castillo podría actuar como una fortaleza y prisión, pero fue también un lugar donde un caballero o señor podía entretener sus pares. Con el tiempo la estética del diseño se convirtió en más importante, como el aspecto del castillo y el tamaño comenzaron a reflejar el prestigio y el poder de su ocupante. Cómodas casas fueron formados a menudo dentro de sus murallas. Aunque sigue siendo siempre la protección de los castillos de los bajos niveles de violencia en períodos posteriores, con el tiempo fueron reemplazados por casas de campo como residencias de alto estatus. [11]

El uso del término

Castillo se utiliza a veces como un término comodín para todo tipo de fortificaciones , y como resultado ha sido mal aplicada en el sentido técnico. Un ejemplo de ello es el Castillo de soltera que, a pesar del nombre, es una edad de hierro de los castros , que tuvo un origen muy diferente y el propósito. [12] Aunque el "castillo" no se ha convertido, como castillo en francés y en Schloss en alemán, un término genérico para una casa de campo Inglés , muchos de ellos usan la palabra en su nombre, mientras que pocas o ninguna de las características arquitectónicas, por lo general ya que sus propietarios le gustaba mantener un vínculo con el pasado y se sintió el castillo fue una expresión de su poder masculino . [13] En el castillo de becas, como se definió anteriormente, es generalmente aceptado como un concepto coherente, con origen en Europa y más tarde se extienda a partes del Oriente Medio, donde fueron introducidos por los cruzados europeos. Este grupo coherente compartían un origen común, trataba de un modo particular de la guerra, y el intercambio de influencias. [14]

En otras zonas del mundo, estructuras análogas características compartidas de la fortificación y otras características que definen asociado con el concepto de un castillo, a pesar de que se originaron en diferentes épocas y circunstancias y experimentado evoluciones diferentes e influencias. Por ejemplo shiro en Japón, que se describe como castillos por el historiador Stephen Turnbull , sufrió "una historia de desarrollo completamente diferentes, fueron construidos en una forma completamente diferente y fueron diseñados para resistir los ataques de una naturaleza completamente diferente". [15] Mientras que los castillos europeos construidos a partir de partir del 13 de finales de 12 y de principios del siglo eran generalmente de piedra, shiro eran en su mayoría de la construcción en madera en el siglo 16. [16] En el momento en las culturas japonesa y europea se reunieron en el siglo 16, la fortificación de Europa ha ido más allá de los castillos y se basó en innovaciones tales como la traza italiana Italienne y fuertes estrella . [15] Los fuertes en la India presenta un caso similar, cuando fueron encontradas por los británicos en los castillos del siglo 17 en Europa había caído por lo general fuera de uso militar. Las fortificaciones que los británicos encontraron fueron llamados fuertes, y la terminología que se utiliza ampliamente en la actualidad. Al igual que shiro, los fuertes India, Durga o DURG en sánscrito , comparten características con los castillos en Europa como actuar como un domicilio para un señor, así como fortificaciones. Ellos también tuvieron una evolución diferente de las estructuras conocidas como castillos que tienen sus orígenes en Europa. [17]

Las características comunes

Motte

Un pequeño castillo que comprende una ronda de mantener rodeada por un alto muro que rodea la cima de una colina hecha por el hombre
La superación de empalizadas de madera motas eran a menudo más tarde sustituido por piedra, como en este ejemplo en el castillo de Gisors en Francia.

Una mota fue un montículo de tierra con una cima plana. A menudo era artificial, aunque a veces se incorpora una función de pre-existentes del paisaje. La excavación de la tierra de la lomita dejó una zanja alrededor de la Motte, que actuó como una defensa más. A veces un arroyo cercano fue desviado a las inundaciones de la zanja, la creación de un foso. "La Motte" y "foso" se derivan de la misma francés antiguo la palabra, lo que indica que las características se asociaron inicialmente y dependían unos de otros para su construcción. A pesar de la Motte se asocia generalmente con el patio para formar una motte-y-bailey castillo, esto no siempre fue así y hay casos en que existía una mota por su propia cuenta. "La Motte" se refiere a la lomita, sino que fue superado con frecuencia por una estructura fortificada, como una fortaleza, y la parte superior plana estaría rodeado por una empalizada . [18] Era común que la mota que se accede a través de un vuelo puente (el puente sobre el foso de la contraescarpa del foso alrededor de la mota en el borde de la cima del montículo), representada por el tapiz de Bayeux representación 's de Castillo de Dinan . [19] A veces una mota cubierto un mayor castillo o una sala, cuyas habitaciones se convirtieron en áreas de almacenamiento subterráneos y en las cárceles bajo una nueva conservar. [20]

Bailey y embarazada

Un patio de armas, también conocido como barrio, era un recinto fortificado. Era una característica común de los castillos, y la mayoría tenía al menos una. El mantenerse en la cima de la Motte fue el domicilio del señor a cargo del castillo y un bastión de la última defensa, mientras que el patio era el hogar del resto de la casa del Señor y les dio protección. Los cuarteles de la guarnición, establos, talleres e instalaciones de almacenamiento a menudo se encuentran en el patio. El agua era suministrada por un bien o cisterna . Con el tiempo el centro de alojamiento de alto estatus cambió a partir de la torre del homenaje de la muralla, lo que resultó en la creación de otro patio que separa los edificios de alto rango - como las cámaras del señor y la capilla - a partir de las estructuras cotidianas, como los talleres y cuarteles . [21] Desde finales del siglo 12, hubo una tendencia para los caballeros a salir de las pequeñas casas que habían ocupado previamente en el patio de vivir en casas fortificadas en el campo. [22] Aunque a menudo se asocia con la Motte-y- tipo bailey del castillo, Baileys se encuentra también como independientes estructuras defensivas. Estas fortificaciones fueron llamados simples ringworks . [23] La embarazada fue el castillo recinto defensivo principal, y los términos "patio" y "embarazada" están vinculados. Un castillo podría haber varios Baileys, pero sólo una embarazada. Castillos sin tener que confiar en sus defensas exteriores de protección, a veces se llaman castillos embarazada; [24] . Estas fueron las primeras formas de castillos, antes de la torre del homenaje se introdujo en el siglo 10 [25]

Mantener

A mantener una gran torre y por lo general el punto más fuertemente defendida de un castillo antes de la introducción de concéntricos de defensa . "Keep" no era un término usado en la época medieval - el término fue aplicado a partir del siglo 16 - en lugar de " torreón "se utiliza para referirse a las grandes torres, [26] o turris en América. En motte-y-bailey castillos, la torre del homenaje estaba en la cima de la Motte. [18] "Dungeon" es una forma corrupta del "torreón" y significa una prisión oscura, poco acogedor. [27] Aunque a menudo la parte más fuerte de un castillo y un último lugar de refugio si las defensas exteriores cayó, la torre del homenaje, no se deja en blanco en caso de ataque, pero fue utilizado como residencia por el señor que era dueño del castillo, o sus invitados o sus representantes. [28] Al principio esto era habitual sólo en Inglaterra, cuando después de la conquista normanda de 1066 los "conquistadores vivido durante mucho tiempo en un constante estado de alerta", [29] en otro lugar la esposa del señor presidió una residencia separada (domus, aula o mansio en latín), cerca de la torre del homenaje y la torre del homenaje era un cuartel y la sede. Poco a poco, las dos funciones se fusionaron en el mismo edificio, y los más altos pisos residenciales tenía grandes ventanas, y como resultado de muchas estructuras, es difícil encontrar un término apropiado. [30] Los espacios internos masivos visto en muchos torreones sobrevivientes pueden engañosa, sino que se han dividido en varias salas por tabiques de luz, como en un moderno edificio de oficinas. Incluso en algunos grandes castillos de la gran sala estaba separada sólo por una partición del Señor "cámara", su cuarto y hasta cierto punto su oficina. [31]

Muro cortina

Un ángulo de visión de las paredes exteriores de una ciudad fortificada
Carcassonne , Francia, que muestra las características clásicas de los muros cortina, zanja defensiva con puente arqueado, y cilíndricas que flanquean torres, con una puerta de entrada y otras estructuras defensivas de madera, aquí la defensa de una ciudad amurallada

Muros cortina se murallas encierran un patio. Tenían que ser lo suficientemente alto como para hacer escalar los muros con escaleras difícil y lo suficientemente gruesa como para soportar el bombardeo de máquinas de asedio que, a partir del siglo 15, incluidos artillería . Una pared típica podría ser de 3 metros (10 pies) de ancho y 12 m (39 pies) de altura, aunque los tamaños variaban mucho entre los castillos. Para protegerlos de socavar , muros cortina se les dio a veces una falda de piedra alrededor de sus bases. Pasarelas a lo largo de la parte superior de los muros cortina permite a los defensores a la lluvia de misiles sobre los enemigos a continuación, y almenas les dio protección. Muros cortina se tachonado de torres para permitir enfilada contra incendios a lo largo de la pared. [32] Arrowslits en las paredes no se hizo común en Europa hasta el siglo 13, por temor a que pudiera comprometer la fuerza de la pared. [33]

Foso

Un foso era un foso defensivo, con fuerte pendiente, y puede ser seco o lleno de agua. Su objetivo era doble, para detener los dispositivos tales como torres de asedio de alcanzar el muro cortina y evitar que las paredes sean socavados. Fosos de agua se encuentran en las zonas bajas y por lo general se cruzaron por un puente levadizo , aunque estos fueron sustituidos a menudo por los puentes de piedra. Islas fortificadas se podría agregar a la fosa, añadiendo otra capa de defensa. Defensa del agua, tales como fosos o lagos naturales, tenía la ventaja de dictar enfoque del enemigo hacia el castillo. [34] El sitio de los 13 del siglo Castillo de Caerphilly en Gales abarca más de 30 acres (12 hectáreas ) y la defensa del agua, creado por la inundación del valle al sur del castillo, son algunas de las mayores de Europa occidental. [35]

Gatehouse

La entrada era a menudo la parte más débil en un circuito de las defensas. Para superar esto, la casa del guarda se ha desarrollado, permitiendo que los del interior del castillo para controlar el flujo de tráfico. En los castillos de la tierra y la madera, la puerta de entrada era por lo general el primer largometraje que ser reconstruida en piedra. La parte frontal de la puerta de entrada era un punto ciego y para superar esta situación, las torres de la proyección se han añadido a cada lado de la puerta en un estilo similar a la desarrollada por los romanos. [36] La puerta de entrada contiene una serie de defensas para hacer un asalto directo más difícil que derribando una puerta simple. Por lo general, había uno o más rastrillos - una rejilla de madera reforzada con metal para bloquear un pasaje - y arrowslits para permitir que los defensores de harry el enemigo. El paso a través de la puerta de entrada se ha alargado para aumentar la cantidad de tiempo que un atacante tuvo que pasar bajo el fuego y no puede tomar represalias en un espacio confinado. [37] Se trata de un mito popular de que los llamados asesinatos-agujeros - las aberturas en el techo de el paso de puerta de enlace - se utiliza para verter aceite hirviendo o plomo fundido sobre los atacantes, el precio del petróleo y el plomo y la distancia de la portería de los incendios hizo que esto era completamente impracticable. Ellos fueron probablemente más utilizada como matacanes , dejar caer objetos sobre los atacantes, o para permitir que el agua que se vierte sobre los incendios para apagarlos. [38] se previó en el piso superior de la puerta de entrada para el alojamiento por lo que la puerta nunca se quedaba sin defensa, A pesar de este acuerdo se desarrolló más adelante para convertirse en mucho más cómoda a expensas de la defensa. [39]

Durante los siglos 13 y 14 de la barbacana se desarrolló. [40] Este consistía en una muralla, foso y, posiblemente, una torre, frente a la puerta de entrada [41] que podría ser utilizado para proteger aún más la entrada. El propósito de una barbacana no era sólo para proporcionar otra línea de defensa, sino también para dictar la única aproximación a la puerta. [42]

Otras características

Almenas se encuentra con más frecuencia la superación de muros cortina y la parte superior de casetas, y compuesto por varios elementos: almenas, vallas , matacanes y aspilleras. Almenas es el nombre colectivo de alternancia almenas y merlones : lagunas y bloques sólidos en la parte superior de una pared. Vallas de madera que se construye proyectarse más allá de la pared, permitiendo que los defensores del lanzamiento, ni deje caer objetos sobre los atacantes en la base de la pared sin tener que inclinarse peligrosamente sobre las almenas, exponiéndose al fuego de represalia. Matacanes eran proyecciones de piedra en la parte superior de una pared con aberturas que permiten los objetos que se dejó caer sobre un enemigo en la base de la pared de manera similar a las vallas. [43] Arrowslits , también comúnmente se llama lagunas, eran estrechas aberturas verticales en muros defensivos que permitió que las flechas o virotes de ballesta que se disparó contra los atacantes. El estrechas rendijas están destinadas a proteger la defensa, proporcionando un blanco muy pequeño, pero el tamaño de la apertura también podría impedir al defensor si era demasiado pequeño. Una abertura más pequeña horizontal se podría agregar para dar un arquero una mejor visión para apuntar. [44] A veces, un puerto de salida se ha incluido;. esto podría permitir a la guarnición a abandonar el castillo y atacar a las fuerzas asedio [45] Era habitual que las letrinas para vaciar las paredes externas de un castillo y en el foso circundante. [46]

Historia

Antecedentes

Un dibujo arqueológico del sitio de una antigua fortaleza, que muestra de planta rectangular, empalizadas, torres en las esquinas y el diseño de los edificios que se está excavando
Ambleside Roman Fort , Inglaterra

El historiador Charles Coulson establece que la acumulación de la riqueza y los recursos, tales como alimentos, llevó a la necesidad de estructuras defensivas. Las primeras fortificaciones se originó en el Creciente Fértil , el Valle del Indo , Egipto y China, donde los asentamientos estaban protegidos por grandes muros. norte de Europa fue más lenta que la del Este para desarrollar estructuras de defensa y no fue hasta la Edad del Bronce que castros se han desarrollado, que luego proliferaron en toda Europa en la Edad de Hierro . Estas estructuras se diferenciaban de sus homólogos del este en que utiliza movimientos de tierra en lugar de piedra como material de construcción. [47] Muchos movimientos de tierra han sobrevivido hasta hoy, junto con la evidencia de empalizadas para acompañar a las cunetas. En Europa, los oppida emergió en el siglo 2 aC, que fueron habitadas densamente poblados fortificados, como el oppidum de Manching ., y desarrollado a partir de castros [48] Los romanos encontraron asentamientos fortificados como los castros y oppida la hora de expandir su territorio en el norte de Europa. [48] Aunque primitivo, fueron a menudo eficaces, y fueron superados sólo por el amplio uso de máquinas de asedio y otros asedios técnicas, como por ejemplo en la batalla de Alesia . Fortificaciones de los romanos propia ( castra ) varió de simples movimientos de tierra temporales planteados por los ejércitos en movimiento, la elaboración de construcciones permanentes de piedra, en particular el milecastles de la Muralla de Adriano . Fuertes romanos fueron generalmente rectangular con esquinas redondeadas -. "Un juego de tarjetas de forma" [49]

Orígenes y principios de los castillos

Castillos tenían sus orígenes en los siglos noveno y décimo. Este período fue testigo del surgimiento de una élite social y militar en el Imperio carolingio que se basaba en la guerra montada . La lucha a caballo era un largo y costoso esfuerzo-, que requieren equipo especializado y caballos entrenados. Por sus esfuerzos, los caballeros se les concedió la tierra de los señores de los que lucharon. El vínculo entre el caballero y señor era la base de feudalismo , y podría ir más arriba en la escala social con las lealtades entre los señores, duques, príncipes y reyes. Cuando el Imperio Carolingio se derrumbó en los siglos 9 y 10, también lo hizo la administración centralizada eficaz, [50] y cayó a la élite terrateniente para tomar el control. Esto llevó a la privatización del gobierno, y los señores locales, asumió la responsabilidad de la economía local y la justicia. A pesar de los castillos fueron los edificios privados, el señorío era un cargo público y el titular tiene la responsabilidad de proteger a sus campesinos. [51] Hay un punto de vista tradicional de que el feudalismo llevó a la ruptura de la sociedad que contribuyó a la caída del Imperio Carolingio. Sin embargo, la opinión académica moderna es que el feudalismo era un sucesor al gobierno anterior en lugar de un rival. [52] La construcción de un castillo a veces requiere el permiso del rey o de otra autoridad de alto. El rey de Francia del oeste Carlos el Calvo prohibió la construcción de castella sin su permiso y ordenó a todos a ser destruido en el 864. Esta es quizás la referencia más temprana a los castillos que se construyeron sin permiso, rompiendo el acuerdo entre el señor feudal y vasallo . Sin embargo, el historiador militar Allen Brown señala que el texto puede ser engañosa, ya en los términos de tiempo como el castellum y castrum se utiliza para describir cualquier fortificación. [53] Hay muy pocos castillos de fecha con certeza a partir de mediados del siglo noveno. Convertido en un torreón en torno a 950, Châteaux Doué-la-Fontaine en Francia es el castillo más viejo de Europa. [54] La invasión musulmana de la Península Ibérica en el siglo octavo introdujo un nuevo estilo de fortificación desarrollado en el norte de África depende de tapial, piedras en el cemento, donde la madera era escasa. Desde un primer momento, utilizaron los castillos para asegurar sus conquistas, un buen ejemplo de castillo primitivo construido por los musulmanes en España. [55]

Una sección de una tela bordada mostrando un castillo sobre una colina defendida por los soldados con lanzas mientras que dos soldados con armadura están tratando de prender fuego a la empalizada
El tapiz de Bayeux contiene una de las primeras representaciones de un castillo. Representa a los atacantes de Castillo de Dinan , en Francia el uso del fuego, una de las amenazas a los castillos de madera.

Allen Brown afirma que la ruptura de la sociedad relacionados con la decadencia del imperio carolingio y la posterior ausencia de un estado de trabajo formado lazos feudales más importantes. El aumento de los castillos no es el único atribuido a la defensa de las tierras de los nuevos señores feudales ", sino como una reacción a los ataques de los magiares , musulmanes y vikingos . [50] Es probable que el castillo evolucionado a partir de la práctica de la fortificación de una casa señorial . La mayor amenaza a la casa de un señor o una sala de fuego era como era por lo general una estructura de madera. Para protegerse de esto, y mantener a raya a otras amenazas, hay varios cursos de acción disponibles: crear movimientos de tierra que rodea a mantener a un enemigo a distancia; construir la sala en la piedra, o que lo resucite en un montículo artificial, conocida como una mota , para presentar un obstáculo para los atacantes. [56] Si bien el concepto de zanjas, terraplenes y muros de piedra como las medidas de defensa es muy antigua, levantando una mota de aprovechar las ventajas de la altura es una innovación medieval. [57] Un banco y una zanja cubierta era una simple forma de defensa, y cuando se encuentran sin una mota asociados se llama ringwork, cuando el sitio estaba en uso durante un período prolongado, que fue sustituido en ocasiones por una estructura más compleja o mejorado por la adición de un muro cortina de piedra. [58] Construcción de la sala en la piedra no necesariamente que sea inmune al fuego, ya que aún tenía ventanas y una puerta de madera. Esto dio lugar a la elevación de las ventanas de la planta baja - para hacer más difícil para lanzar objetos en - y para cambiar la entrada de la planta baja al primer piso. Estas características se ven en el castillo de muchos sobrevivientes mantiene, que fueron la versión más sofisticada de las salas y contenía la casa del Señor. [59] Castillos no se utilizaron sólo como sitios de defensa, sino también para mejorar el control del Señor sobre sus tierras. Ellos permitieron que la guarnición de controlar el área circundante, [60] y formó un centro de administración, ofreciendo al Señor con un lugar para celebrar la corte . [61]

Desde 1000 en adelante, las referencias a los castillos en textos como cartas aumentado considerablemente. Los historiadores han interpretado esto como una evidencia de un aumento repentino en el número de castillos en Europa alrededor de este tiempo, su interpretación ha sido apoyado por arqueológicos . investigación que ha salido con la construcción de sitios castillo a través del examen de la cerámica [62] El aumento en Italia comenzó en el 950S, con número de castillos aumentar por un factor de tres a cinco cada 50 años, mientras que en otras partes de Europa como Francia y España el aumento fue más lento. En 950, Provenza fue el hogar de 12 castillos, en 1000 esta cifra había aumentado a 30, y 1030 fue de más de 100. [63] Si bien el aumento fue más lenta en España, la década de 1020 experimentó un crecimiento especialmente en el número de castillos en la región, especialmente en las zonas fronterizas disputa entre cristianos y musulmanes. [64] A pesar del período común en la que los castillos saltó a la fama en Europa, su forma y su diseño varía de una región a otra. En el siglo 11, la motte - una colina artificial coronada por una empalizada y torre - era la forma más común de castillo en Europa, en todas partes excepto en Escandinavia. [63] Mientras que Gran Bretaña, Francia e Italia comparten una tradición de construcción en madera que se continuó en el castillo de la arquitectura, la piedra España más de uso común o de adobe, como el principal material de construcción. [65] Aunque la construcción de piedra más tarde se convertiría en otro lugar común, a partir del siglo 11 fue el principal material de construcción de castillos cristianos en España, [66] , mientras que al mismo tiempo, la madera sigue siendo el material de construcción predominante en el noroeste de Europa. [64]

Un edificio de planta cuadrada de piedra gris, con estrechas ranuras verticales en la primera planta, y ventanas más anchas en la segunda. La parte superior del castillo se ve deteriorado y no hay techo, excepto en una torre adjunta a la torre del homenaje.
Construido en 1138, Castle Rising en Inglaterra es un ejemplo de un torreón más detalles. [67]

Los castillos se introdujo en Inglaterra poco antes de la conquista normanda en 1066. [68] La Motte y bailey siendo la forma dominante de castillo en Inglaterra, Gales e Irlanda hasta bien entrado el siglo 12. [69] Al mismo tiempo, el castillo de la arquitectura en Europa continental se volvió más sofisticada. [70] La torre del homenaje [71] estaba en el centro de este cambio en la arquitectura de los castillos en el siglo 12. Torres centrales proliferado, y por lo general tenían una planta cuadrada, con muros de 3 a 4 m (9,8 a 13 pies) de espesor. Su decoración emula la arquitectura románica , y en ocasiones incorporan ventanas de doble similares a los encontrados en la iglesia de campanarios. Torreones, que eran la residencia del señor del castillo, se desarrolló para ser más amplios. El énfasis del diseño de los torreones cambiado para reflejar un cambio de funcionamiento a las necesidades decorativas, la imposición de un símbolo del poder señorial sobre el paisaje. Esto llevado a veces a poner en peligro la defensa en aras de la pantalla. [70] Los historiadores han interpretado la presencia generalizada de los castillos de toda Europa en los siglos 11 y 12 como evidencia de que la guerra era común, y por lo general entre los señores locales. [72]

En algunos países, antes de un castillo se podía construir era necesario para obtener el permiso del rey a través de una licencia para almenar, o de lo contrario corría el riesgo de que el constructor está menospreciado - daño intencional a tal punto que el castillo era indefendible. This was not universal as in some countries the monarch had little control over lords, or required the construction of new castles to aid in securing the land so was unconcerned about granting permission – as was the case in England after 1066 and the Holy Land during the Crusades . Switzerland is an extreme case of there being no state control over who built castles, and as a result there were 4,000 in the country. Before the 12th century, castles were as uncommon in Denmark as they had been in England before the Norman Conquest. The introduction of castles to Denmark was a reaction to attacks from Wendish pirates, and they were usually intended as coastal defences. [ 73 ]

Innovation and scientific design

Until the 12th century, stone-built and earth and timber castles were contemporary, [ 74 ] but by the late 12th century the number of castles being built went into decline. This has been partly attributed to the higher cost of stone-built fortifications, and the obsolescence of timber and earthwork sites, which meant it was preferable to build in more durable stone. [ 75 ] Although superseded by their stone successors, timber and earthwork castles were by no means useless. [ 76 ] This is evidenced by the continual maintenance of timber castles over long periods, sometimes several centuries; Owain Glynd?r 's 11th-century timber castle at Sycharth was still in use by the start of the 15th century, its structure having been maintained for four centuries. [ 77 ] [ 78 ]

In the late 12th century, there was a change in castle architecture. Until then, castles probably had few towers; a gateway with few defensive features such as arrowslits or a portcullis; a great keep or donjon, usually square and without arrowslits; and the shape would have been dictated by the lay of the land (the result was often irregular or curvilinear structures). The design of castles was not uniform, but these were features that could be found in a typical castle in the mid-12th century. [ 79 ] By the end of the 12th century or the early 13th century, a newly constructed castle could be expected to be polygonal in shape, with towers at the corners to provide enfilading fire for the walls. The towers would have protruded from the walls and featured arrowslits on each level to allow archers to target anyone nearing or at the curtain wall. These later castles did not always have a keep, but this may have been because the more complex design of the castle as a whole drove up costs and the keep was sacrificed to save money. The larger towers provided space for habitation to make up for the loss of the donjon. Where keeps did exist, they were no longer square but polygonal or cylindrical. Gateways were more strongly defended, with the entrance to the castle usually between two half-round towers which were connected by a passage above the gateway – although there was great variety in the styles of gateway and entrances – and one or more portcullis. [ 80 ] A peculiar feature of Muslim castles in the Iberian Peninsula was the use of detached towers, called Albarrana towers, around the perimeter as can be seen at the Alcazaba of Badajoz . Probably developed in the 12th century, the towers provided flanking fire. They were connected to the castle by removable wooden bridges, so if the towers were captured the rest of the castle was not accessible. [ 81 ]

Two round towers of light yellow stone at the bottom and dark orangy stone at the top on either side of an arched entrance. A bridge leads from the entrance to allow access.
The gatehouse to the inner ward of Beeston Castle , England, was built in the 1220s and has an entrance between two half-round towers. [ 82 ]

When seeking to explain this change in the complexity and style of castles, antiquarians found their answer in the Crusades. It seemed that the Crusaders had learned much about fortification from their conflicts with the Saracens and exposure to Byzantine architecture . There were legends such as that of Lalys – an architect from Palestine who reputedly went to Wales after the Crusades and greatly enhanced the castles in the south of the country – and it was assumed that great architects such as James of Saint George originated in the East. However, in the mid-20th century this view was cast into doubt. Legends were discredited, and in the case of James of Saint George, it was proven that he came from Saint-Georges-d'Espéranche , in France. If the innovations in fortification had derived from the East, it would have been expected for their influence to be seen from 1100 onwards, immediately after the Christians were victorious in the First Crusade (1096–1099), rather than nearly 100 years later. [ 83 ] Remains of Roman structures in Western Europe were still upstanding in many places, some of which had flanking round-towers and entrances between two flanking towers. The castle builders of Western Europe were aware of and influenced by Roman design; late Roman coastal forts on the English " Saxon Shore " were reused and in Spain the wall around the city of Ávila imitated Roman architecture when it was built in 1091. [ 83 ] It has been argued – by historian Smail in Crusading warfare – that the case for the influence of Eastern fortification on the West has been overstated, and that Crusaders of the 12th century in fact learned very little about scientific design from Byzantine and Saracen defences. [ 84 ] A well-sited castle that made use of natural defences and had strong ditches and walls had no need for a scientific design. An example of this approach is Kerak . Although there were no scientific elements to its design, it was almost impregnable, and in 1187 Saladin chose to lay siege to the castle and starve out its garrison rather than risk an assault. [ 84 ]

After the First Crusade, Crusaders who did not return to their homes in Europe helped found the Crusader states of the principality of Antioch , the County of Edessa , the Kingdom of Jerusalem , and the County of Tripoli . The castles they founded to secure their acquisitions were designed mostly by Syrian master-masons. Their design was very similar to that of a Roman fort or Byzantine tetrapyrgia which were square in plan and had square towers at each corner that did not project much beyond the curtain wall. The keep of these Crusader castles would have had a square plan and generally be undecorated. [ 85 ] While castles were used to hold a site and control movement of armies, in the Holy Land some key strategic positions were left unfortified. [ 86 ] Castle architecture in the East became more complex around the late 12th and early 13th centuries after the stalemate of the Third Crusade (1189–1192). Both Christians and Muslims created fortifications, and the character of each was different. Saphadin , the 13th-century ruler of the Saracens, created structures with large rectangular towers that influenced Muslim architecture and were copied again and again, however they had little influence on Crusader castles. [ 87 ]

A stone castle with two high curtain walls, one within the other. They are crenelated and studded with projecting towers, both rectangular and rounded. The castle is on a promontory high above the surrounding landscape.
Krak des Chevaliers is a concentric castle built with both rectangular and rounded towers. It is one of the best-preserved Crusader castles. [ 88 ]

In the early 13th century, Crusaders' castles were mostly built by Military Orders , such as the Knights Hospitaller , Knights Templar , and Knights of the Teutonic Order . They were responsible for the foundation of sites such as Krak des Chevaliers , Margat , and Belvoir . The forms of the castles varied not just between orders, but individually from castle to castle, although it was common for those founded in this period to have concentric defences. [ 89 ] The concept, which originated in castles such as Krak des Chevaliers, was to remove the reliance on a central strongpoint and to emphasise the defence of the curtain walls. There would be more than one ring of defensive walls, one inside the other, with the inner ring rising above the outer so that its field of fire was not completely obscured. If assailants made it past the first line of defences into the outer enclosure, they would be caught in the killing ground between the inner and outer walls and have to assault the second wall to secure the fall of the castle. [ 90 ] Concentric castles were widely copied across Europe, for instance when Edward I of England – who had himself been on Crusade – built castles in Wales in the late 13th century, four of the eight he founded were concentric. [ 89 ] [ 90 ] Not all the features of the Crusader castles from the 13th century were emulated in Europe; for instance, it was common in Crusader castles to have the main gate in the side of a tower and for there to be two turns in the passageway, lengthening the time it took for someone to reach the outer enclosure. It is rare for this bent entrance to be found in Europe. [ 89 ]

One of the effects of the Livonian Crusade in the Baltic was the introduction of stone and brick fortifications. Although there were hundreds of wooden castles in Prussia and Livonia , the use of bricks and mortar was unknown in the region before the Crusaders. Until the 13th century and start of the 14th centuries, their design was heterogeneous, however this period saw the emergence of a standard plan in the region: a square plan, with four wings around a central courtyard. [ 91 ] It was common for castles in the East to have arrowslits in the curtain wall at multiple levels; contemporary builders in Europe were wary of this as they believed it weakened the wall. Arrowslits did not compromise the wall's strength, but it was not until Edward I's programme of castle building that they were widely adopted in Europe. [ 33 ] The Crusades also led to the introduction of machicolations into Western architecture. Until the 13th century, the tops of towers had been surrounded by wooden galleries, allowing defenders to drop objects on assailants below. Although machicolations performed the same purpose as the wooden galleries, they were probably an Eastern invention rather than an evolution of the wooden form. Machicolations were used in the East long before the arrival of the Crusaders, and perhaps as early as the first half of the 8th century in Syria. [ 92 ] The greatest period of castle building in Spain was in the 11th to 13th centuries, and they were most commonly found in the disputed borders between Christian and Muslim lands. Conflict and interaction between the two groups led to an exchange of architectural ideas, and Spanish Christians adopted the use of detached towers. The Spanish Reconquista , driving the Muslims out of the Iberian Peninsula, was complete in 1492. [ 93 ]

Although France has been described as "the heartland of medieval architecture", the English were at the forefront of castle architecture in the 12th century. French historian François Gebelin wrote: "The great revival in military architecture was led, as one would naturally expect, by the powerful kings and princes of the time; by the sons of William the Conqueror and their descendants, the Plantagenets , when they became dukes of Normandy . These were the men who built all the most typical twelfth-century fortified castles remaining to-day". [ 94 ] Despite this, by the beginning of the 15th century, the rate of castle construction in England and Wales went into decline. The new castles were generally of a lighter build than earlier structures and presented few innovations, although strong sites were still created such as that of Raglan in Wales. At the same time, French castle architecture came to the fore and led the way in the field of medieval fortifications. Across Europe – particularly the Baltic, Germany, and Scotland – castles were built well into the 16th century. [ 95 ]

Advent of gunpowder

A three-storey stone structure with smooth walls and a roughly cut base. The walls are angular and have openings.
The angled bastion , as used in Copertino Castle in Italy, was developed around 1500. First used in Italy, it allowed the evolution of artillery forts that eventually took over the military role of castles.

Artillery powered by gunpowder was introduced to Europe in the 1320s and spread quickly. Handguns, which were initially unpredictable and inaccurate weapons, were not recorded until the 1380s. [ 96 ] Castles were adapted to allow small artillery pieces – averaging between 19.6 and 22 kg (43 and 49 lb) – to fire from towers. These guns were too heavy for a man to carry and fire, but if he supported the butt end and rested the muzzle on the edge of the gun port he could fire the weapon. The gun ports developed in this period show a unique feature, that of a horizontal timber across the opening. A hook on the end of the gun could be latched over the timber so the gunner did not have to take the full recoil of the weapon. This adaptation is found across Europe, and although the timber rarely survives, there is an intact example at Castle Doornenburg in the Netherlands. Gunports were keyhole shaped, with a circular hole at the bottom for the weapon and a narrow slit on top to allow the gunner to aim. [ 97 ] This form is very common in castles adapted for guns, found in Egypt, Italy, Scotland, and Spain, and elsewhere in between. Other types of port, though less common, were horizontal slits – allowing only lateral movement – and large square openings, which allowed greater movement. [ 97 ] The use of guns for defence gave rise to artillery castles, such as that of Château de Ham in France. Defences against guns were not developed until a later stage. [ 98 ] Ham is an example of the trend for new castles to dispense with earlier features such as machicolations, tall towers, and crenellations. [ 99 ]

Bigger guns were developed, and in the 15th century became an alternative to siege engines such as the trebuchet . The benefits of large guns over trebuchets – the most effective siege engine of the Middle Ages before the advent of gunpowder – were those of a greater range and power. In an effort to make them more effective, guns were made ever bigger, although this hampered their ability to reach remote castles. By the 1450s guns were the preferred siege weapon, and their effectiveness was demonstrated by Mehmed II at the Fall of Constantinople . [ 100 ] The response towards more effective cannons was to build thicker walls and to prefer round towers, as the curving sides were more likely to deflect a shot than a flat surface. While this sufficed for new castles, pre-existing structures had to find a way to cope with being battered by cannon. An earthen bank could be piled behind a castle's curtain wall to absorb some of the shock of impact. [ 101 ] Often, castles constructed before the age of gunpowder were incapable of using guns as their wall-walks were too narrow. A solution to this was to pull down the top of a tower and to fill the lower part with the rubble to provide a surface for the guns to fire from. Lowering the defences in this way had the effect of making them easier to scale with ladders. A more popular alternative defence, which avoided damaging the castle, was to establish bulwarks beyond the castle's defences. These could be built from earth or stone and were used to mount weapons. [ 102 ]

Around 1500, the innovation of the angled bastion was developed in Italy. [ 103 ] With developments such as these, Italy pioneered permanent artillery fortifications, which took over from the defensive role of castles. From this evolved star forts , also known as trace italienne . [ 9 ] The elite responsible for castle construction had to choose between the new type that could withstand cannon-fire and the earlier, more elaborate style. The first was ugly and uncomfortable and the latter was less secure, although it did offer greater aesthetic appeal and value as a status symbol. The second choice proved to be more popular as it became apparent that there was little point in trying to make the site genuinely defensible in the face of cannon. [ 104 ] For a variety of reasons, not least of which is that many castles have no recorded history, there is no firm number of castles built in the medieval period. However, it has been estimated that between 75,000 and 100,000 were built in western Europe; [ 105 ] of these around 1,700 were in England and Wales [ 106 ] and around 14,000 in German-speaking areas. [ 107 ]

A low, two-storey building with a crenellated frontage. A four-storey crenellated tower is in the centre of the frontage.
Fortaleza Ozama in the Dominican Republic was the first castle built in the Americas.

Some true castles were built in the Americas by the Spanish and French colonies . The first stage of Spanish fort construction has been termed the "castle period", which lasted from 1492 until the end of the 16th century. [ 108 ] Starting with Fortaleza Ozama , "these castles were essentially European medieval castles transposed to America". [ 109 ] Among other defensive structures (including forts and citadels), castles were also built in New France towards the end of the 17th century. [ 110 ] In Montreal the artillery was not as developed as on the battle-fields of Europe, some of the region's outlying forts were built like the fortified manor houses of France. Fort Longueuil, built from 1695–1698 by a baronial family , has been described as "the most medieval-looking fort built in Canada". [ 111 ] The manor house and stables were within a fortified bailey, with a tall round turret in each corner. The "most substantial castle-like fort" near Montréal was Fort Senneville , built in 1692 with square towers connected by thick stone walls, as well as a fortified windmill. [ 112 ] Stone forts such as these served as defensive residences, as well as imposing structures to prevent Iroquois incursions. [ 113 ]

Although castle construction faded towards the 16th century, castles did not necessarily all fall out of use. Some retained a role in local administration and became law courts, while others are still handed down in aristocratic families as hereditary seats. A particularly famous example of this is Windsor Castle in England which was founded in the 11th century and is home to the monarch of the United Kingdom. [ 114 ] In other cases they still had a role in defence. Tower houses , which are closely related to castles and include pele towers , were defended towers that were permanent residences built in the 14th to 17th centuries. Especially common in Ireland and Scotland, they could be up to five storeys high and succeeded common enclosure castles and were built by a greater social range of people. While unlikely to provide as much protection as a more complex castle, they offered security against raiders and other small threats. [ 115 ] [ 116 ]

Later use and revival castles

A castle of fairy-tale appearance sitting high on a ridge above a wooded landscape. The walls are of pale stone, the roofs are of steep pitch and there are a number of small towers and turrets.
Neuschwanstein is a 19th-century neo-romantic castle built by Ludwig II of Bavaria .

According to archaeologists Oliver Creighton and Robert Higham, "the great country houses of the seventeenth to twentieth centuries were, in a social sense, the castles of their day". [ 117 ] Although there was a trend for the elite to move from castles into country houses in the 17th century, castles were not completely useless. In later conflicts, such as the English Civil War (1641–1651), many castles were refortified, although subsequently slighted to prevent them from being used again. [ 118 ]

Revival or mock castles became popular as a manifestation of a Romantic interest in the Middle Ages and chivalry , and as part of the broader Gothic Revival in architecture. Examples of these castles include Chapultepec in Mexico, [ 119 ] Neuschwanstein in Germany, [ 120 ] and Edwin Lutyens ' Castle Drogo (1911–1930) – the last flicker of this movement in the British Isles. [ 121 ] While churches and cathedrals in a Gothic style could faithfully imitate medieval examples, new country houses built in a "castle style" differed internally to their medieval predecessors. This was because to be faithful to medieval design would have left the houses cold and dark by contemporary standards. [ 122 ]

Artificial ruins , built to resemble remnants of historic edifices, were also a hallmark of the period. They were usually built as centre pieces in aristocratic planned landscapes. Follies were similar, although they differed from artificial ruins in that they were not part of a planned landscape, but rather seemed to have no reason for being built. Both drew on elements of castle architecture such as castellation and towers, but served no military purpose and were solely for display. [ 123 ]

Construcción

A half finished circular tower with scaffolding near the top. There are holes in the tower and workers on top.
Construction of the large tower of the Coucy Castle in France, with scaffolding and masons at work. The holes mark the position of the scaffolding in earlier stages of construction.

Once the site of a castle had been selected – whether a strategic position or one intended to dominate the landscape as a mark of power – the building material had to be selected. An earth and timber castle was cheaper and easier to erect than one built from stone. The costs involved in construction are not well-recorded, and most surviving records relate to royal castles. [ 124 ] A castle with earthen ramparts, a motte, and timber defences and buildings could have been constructed by an unskilled workforce. The source of man-power was probably from the local lordship, and the tenants would already have the necessary skills of felling trees, digging, and working timber necessary for an earth and timber castle. Possibly coerced into working for their lord, the construction of an earth and timber castle would not have been a drain on a client's funds. In terms of time, it has been estimated that an average sized motte – 5 m (16 ft) high and 15 m (49 ft) wide at the summit – would have taken 50 people about 40 working days. An exceptionally expensive motte and bailey was that of Clones in Ireland, built in 1211 for £20. The high cost, relative to other castles of its type, was because labourers had to be imported. [ 124 ]

The cost of building a castle varied according to factors such as their complexity and transport costs for material. It is certain that stone castles cost a great deal more than those built from earth and timber. Even a very small tower, such as Peveril Castle , would have cost around £200. In the middle were castles such as Orford , which was built in the late 12th century for £1,400, and at the upper end were those such as Dover , which cost about £7,000 between 1181 and 1191. [ 125 ] Spending on the scale of the vast castles such as Château Gaillard (an estimated £15,000 to £20,000 between 1196 and 1198) was easily supported by The Crown , but for lords of smaller areas, castle building was a very serious and costly undertaking. It was usual for a stone castle to take the best part of a decade to finish. The cost of a large castle built over this time (anywhere from £1,000 to £10,000) would take the income from several manors , severely impacting a lord's finances. [ 126 ] Costs in the late 13th century were of a similar order, with castles such as Beaumaris and Rhuddlan costing £14,500 and £9,000 respectively. Edward I's campaign of castle-building in Wales cost £80,000 between 1277 and 1304, and £95,000 between 1277 and 1329. [ 127 ] Renowned designer Master James of Saint George , responsible for the construction of Beaumaris, explained the cost:

In case you should wonder where so much money could go in a week, we would have you know that we have needed – and shall continue to need 400 masons, both cutters and layers, together with 2,000 less skilled workmen, 100 carts, 60 wagons and 30 boats bringing stone and sea coal; 200 quarrymen; 30 smiths; and carpenters for putting in the joists and floor boards and other necessary jobs. All this takes no account of the garrison ... nor of purchases of material. Of which there will have to be a great quantity ... The men's pay has been and still is very much in arrears, and we are having the greatest difficulty in keeping them because they have simply nothing to live on. [ 128 ]
It has been estimated that the tower of Château de Langeais took around 83,000 average working days to complete. [ 129 ]

One detailed study has been done on the cost of construction of Langeais tower, built in 992 in France. The stone tower is 16 metres (52 ft) high, 17.5 m wide, and 10 m long with walls averaging 1.5 m. The walls contain 1,200 cubic metres (42,000 cu ft) of stone and have a total surface (both inside and out) of 1,600 square metres (17,000 sq ft). The tower is estimated to have used 83,000 average working days to complete, most of which was unskilled labour. [ 130 ]

Not only were stone castles expensive to build in the first place, but their maintenance was a constant drain. They contained a lot of timber, which was often unseasoned and as a result needed careful upkeep. For example, it is documented that in the late 12th century repairs at castles such as Exeter and Gloucester cost between £20 and £50 annually. [ 131 ]

Medieval machines and inventions, such as the treadwheel crane , became indispensable during construction, and techniques of building wooden scaffolding were improved upon from Antiquity . [ 132 ] Finding stone for shell keeps and castle walls was the first concern of medieval builders, and a prominent concern was to have quarries close at hand. [ 133 ] There are examples of some castles where stone was quarried on site, such as Chinon , Château de Coucy and Château Gaillard. [ 133 ]

Brick-built structures were not necessarily weaker than their stone-built counterparts. In England, brick production proliferated along the south-east coast due to an influx of Flemish weavers and a reduction in the amount of available stone, leading to a demand for an alternative building material. Brick castles are less common than stone or earth and timber constructions, and often it was chosen for its aesthetic appeal or because it was in fashion, encouraged by the brick architecture of the Low Countries . For example, when Tattershall Castle was built between 1430 and 1450, there was plenty of stone available nearby, but the owner, Lord Cromwell, chose to use brick. About 700,000 bricks were used to build the castle, which has been described as "the finest piece of medieval brick-work in England". [ 134 ] Many countries had both timber and stone castles, [ 135 ] however Denmark had few quarries, and as a result, most of its castles are earth and timber affairs, or later on built from brick. [ 136 ] Also, most Spanish castles were built from stone, whereas castles in Eastern Europe were usually of timber construction. [ 137 ]

An orange brick castle with a curtain wall and a central keep. The site is surrounded by water. The gateway is flanked by two round towers with high peaked roofs. Aside from the keep, there is another building within the castle rising above the curtain wall.
The Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork , Poland, is a classic example of medieval fortresses and built in the typical style of northern German Brick Gothic . [ 138 ] On its completion in 1406 it was the largest brick castle in the world. [ 139 ]

Social centre

A young woman in a medieval-style dress of cream satin ties a red scarf to the arm of a man in armour and mounted on a horse. The scene is set at the portal of a castle.
God Speed! by Edmund Blair Leighton , 1900: a late Victorian view of a lady giving a favour to a knight about to do battle

Due to the lord's presence in a castle, it was a centre of administration from where he controlled his lands. He relied on the support of those below him, as without the support of his more powerful tenants, a lord could expect his power to be weakened. Successful lords regularly held court with those immediately below them on the social scale, but absentee lords found their power weakened. Larger lordships could be vast, and it would be impractical for a lord to visit all his properties regularly so deputies were appointed. This especially applied to royalty, who sometimes owned land in different countries. [ 140 ] To allow the lord to concentrate on his duties regarding administration, he had a household of servants to take care of chores such as providing food. The household was run by a chamberlain, while a treasurer took care of the estate's written records. Royal households took essentially the same form as baronial households, although on a much larger scale and the positions were more prestigious. [ 141 ] An important role of the household servants was the preparation of food ; the castle kitchens would have been a busy place when the castle was occupied, called on to provide large meals. [ 142 ] Without the presence of a lord's household, usually because he was staying elsewhere, a castle would have been a quiet place with few residents, focused on maintaining the castle. [ 143 ] As social centres castles were important places for display. Builders took the opportunity to draw on symbolism, through the use of motifs, to evoke a sense of chivalry that was aspired to in the Middle Ages amongst the elite. Later structures of the Romantic Revival would draw on elements of castle architecture such as battlements for the same purpose. Castles have been compared with cathedrals as objects of architectural pride, and some castles incorporated gardens as ornamental features. [ 144 ] The right to crenellate, when granted by a monarch – though it was not always necessary – was important not just as it allowed a lord to defend his property but because crenellations and other accoutrements associated with castles were prestigious through their use by the elite. [ 145 ]

The purpose of marriage between the medieval elites was to secure land, not for love; girls were married in their teens, but boys did not marry until they came of age. [ 146 ] There is a popular conception that women played a peripheral role in the medieval castle household, and that it was dominated by the lord himself. This derives from the image of the castle as a martial institution, but most castles in England, France, Ireland, and Scotland were never involved in conflicts or sieges, so the domestic life is a neglected facet. [ 147 ] The lady was given a "marriage portion" of her husband's estates – usually about a third – which was hers for life, and her husband would inherit on her death. It was her duty to administer them directly, as the lord administered his own land. [ 148 ] Despite generally being excluded from military service, a woman could be in charge of a castle, either on behalf of her husband or if she was widowed. Because of their influence within the medieval household, women influenced construction and design, sometimes through direct patronage; historian Charles Coulson emphasises the role of women in applying "a refined aristocratic taste" to castles due to their long term residence. [ 149 ]

Courtly love was the eroticisation of love between the nobility, who often resided in castles. Emphasis was placed on restraint between lovers. Though sometimes expressed through chivalric events such as tournaments , where knights would fight wearing a token from their lady, it could also be private and conducted in secret. The legend of Tristan and Iseult is one example of stories of courtly love told in the Middle Ages. [ 150 ] It was an ideal of love between two people not married to each other, although the man might be married to someone else. It was not uncommon or ignoble for a lord to be adulterous – Henry I of England had over 20 bastards for instance – but for a lady to be promiscuous was seen as dishonourable. [ 151 ]

Castle landscapes

As castles were not simply military buildings but centres of administration and symbols of power, they had a significant impact on the landscape around them. Rural castles were often associated with mills and field systems due to their role in managing the lord's estate, [ 152 ] which gave them greater influence over resources. [ 153 ] Others were adjacent to or in royal forests or deer parks and were important in their maintenance. Fish ponds were a luxury of the lordly elite, and many were found next to castles. Not only were they practical in that they ensured a water supply and fresh fish, but they were a status symbol as they were expensive to build and maintain. [ 154 ]

Although sometimes the construction of a castle led to the destruction of a village, such as at Eaton Socon in England, it was more common for the villages nearby to have grown as a result of the presence of a castle. Sometimes planned towns or villages were created around a castle. [ 152 ] The benefits of castle building on settlements was not confined to Europe. When the 13th-century Safad Castle was founded in Galilee in the Holy Land, the 260 villages benefitted from the inhabitants' newfound ability to move freely. [ 155 ] When built, a castle could result in the restructuring of the local landscape, with roads moved for the convenience of the lord. [ 156 ] Settlements grew naturally around a castle, rather than being planned, due to the benefits of proximity to an economic centre in a rural landscape and the safety given by the defences. Not all such settlements survived, as once the castle lost its importance – perhaps succeeded by a manor house as the centre of administration – the benefits of living next to a castle vanished and the settlement depopulated. [ 157 ]

During and shortly after the Norman Conquest of England, castles were inserted into important pre-existing towns to control and subdue the populace. They were usually located near any existing town defences, such as Roman walls, although this sometimes resulted in the demolition of structures occupying the desired site. In Lincoln , 166 houses were destroyed to clear space for the castle, and in York agricultural land was flooded to create a moat for the castle. As the military importance of urban castles waned from their early origins, they became more important as centres of administration, and their financial and judicial roles. [ 158 ] When the Normans invaded Ireland, Scotland, and Wales in the 11th and 12th centuries, settlement in those countries was predominantly non-urban, and the foundation of towns is often linked with the creation of a castle. [ 159 ]

The location of castles in relation to high status features, such as fish ponds, was a statement of power and control of resources. Also often found near a castle, sometimes within its defences, was the parish church . [ 160 ] This signified a close relationship between feudal lords and the Church, one of the most important institutions of medieval society. [ 161 ] Even elements of castle architecture that have usually been interpreted as military could be used for display. The water features of Kenilworth Castle in England – comprising a moat and several satellite ponds – forced anyone approaching the castle entrance to take a very indirect route, walking around the defences before the final approach towards the gateway. [ 162 ] Another example is that of the 14th-century Bodiam Castle , also in England; although it appears to be a state of the art, advanced castle it is in a site of little strategic importance, and the moat was shallow and more likely intended to make the site look more impressive than as a defence against mining. The approach was long and took the viewer around the castle, ensuring they got a good look before entering. Moreover, the gunports were impractical and unlikely to have been effective. [ 163 ] This also demonstrates that licences to crenellate were not solely about a desire to defend oneself, but to have proof of a relationship with or favour from the monarch, who was the one responsible for granting permission. [ 164 ]

A castle on two islands surrounded by a lake. A stone curtain wall runs along the edge of the first island and access is provided by a stone bridge and gatehouse. The second island has a square stone keep.
The landscape around Leeds Castle in England has been managed since the 13th century. The castle overlooks artificial lakes and ponds and is within a medieval deer park . [ 165 ]

Warfare

A tall wooden structure with a throwing arm counter balanced by a large weight
A trebuchet at Château des Baux in France

As a static structure, castles could often be avoided, as their immediate area of influence was about 400 metres (1,300 ft) and their weapons had a short range even early in the age of artillery. However, leaving an enemy behind the army would allow them to interfere with communications and to make raids in the landscape to harry the army. Garrisons were expensive and as a result often small unless the castle was important. [ 166 ] In peace time garrisons were smaller due to the cost of upkeep, and small castles were manned by perhaps a couple of watchmen and gate-guards. Even in war garrisons were not necessarily large as too many people making up a defending force would strain supplies and impair the castle's ability to withstand a long siege. In 1403 a force of 37 archers successfully defended Caernarfon Castle against two assaults by Owain Glynd?r's allies during a long siege, demonstrating that a small force could be effective. [ 167 ] Early on, manning a castle was a feudal duty of vassals to their magnates, and magnates to their kings, however this was later replaced with paid forces. [ 167 ] [ 168 ] A garrison was usually commanded by a constable whose peace-time role would have been looking after the castle in the owner's absence. Under his command would have been knights, who by benefit of their military training, would have acted as a type of officer class. Below them were archers and bowmen, whose role was to prevent the enemy reaching the walls as can be seen by the positioning of arrowslits. [ 169 ]

If it was necessary to control the castle for strategic reasons, an army could either assault a castle, or lay siege to it. For the most heavily fortified sites, it was more efficient to starve the garrison out than to assault it. Without relief from an outside source, the defending army would eventually submit; but sieges could last weeks, months, and in rare cases years if the supplies of food and water were plentiful. A long siege could slow down the army, allowing help to come or for the enemy to prepare a larger force for later. [ 170 ] Such an approach was not confined to castles, but was also applied to the fortified towns of the day. [ 171 ] On occasion, siege castles would be built to defend the besiegers from a sudden sally and would have been abandoned after the siege ended one way or another. [ 172 ]

If forced to assault a castle, there were many options available to the attackers. For wooden structures, such as early motte-and-baileys, fire was a real threat and attempts would be made to set them alight as can be seen in the Bayeux Tapestry. [ 173 ] Projectile weapons had been used since antiquity and the mangonel and petraria – from Roman and Eastern origins respectively – were the main two that were used into the Middle Ages. The trebuchet , which probably evolved from the petraria in the 13th century, was the most effective siege weapon before the development of cannons. These weapons were vulnerable to fire from the castle as they had a short range and were large machines. Conversely, weapons such as trebuchets could be fired from within the castle due to the high trajectory of its projectile, and would be protected from direct fire by the curtain walls. [ 174 ] Ballistas or springalds were siege engines that worked on the same principles as crossbows. With their origins in Ancient Greece, tension was used to project a bolt or javelin. Missiles fired from these engines had a lower trajectory than trebuchets or mangonels and were more accurate. They were more commonly used against the garrison rather than the buildings of a castle. [ 175 ] Eventually cannons developed to the point where they were more powerful and had a greater range than the trebuchet, and became the main weapon in siege warfare. [ 100 ]

Walls could be undermined by the creation of a sap ; a mine would be dug to conceal the attackers' approach to the wall, with wooden supports to prevent the tunnel from collapsing. When the target had been reached, the supports would be burned, caving in the tunnel and bringing down the structure above. [ 176 ] The best defence against this form of attack was to built a castle on a rock outcrop or to surround it with a wide, deep moat. A counter-mine could be dug towards the mine of the besiegers; assuming the two converged, this would result in underground hand-to-hand combat in the pitch black. Mining was an effective method of breaching walls and may have had a negative effect on the morale of the defending garrison. At the siege of Margat in 1285, Sultan Al Mansur Qalawun created a mine extending underneath the castle's keep. When the Knights Hospitaller were informed of the mine they surrendered the castle. [ 177 ] Battering rams were also used, usually in the form of a tree trunk given an iron cap. They were used to batter down the castle gates, although they were sometimes used against walls with less effect. [ 178 ] Those manning rams and entering mines required protection from a castle's defenders; small movable wooden structures called "penthouses" would cover the entrance or the ram. They were often covered in raw hides to offer some protection against fire. [ 179 ]

As an alternative to creating a breach in the walls, which was time consuming and a task for skilled men, an escalade could be attempted to capture the walls, with fighting along the walkways on the curtain walls; [ 179 ] in this instance, attackers would be very vulnerable to arrowfire, particularly from crossbows or the English longbow . [ 180 ] A safer option for those assaulting a castle than climbing ladders was to use a siege tower , usually called a belfry. Once ditches around a castle were partially filled in, these wooden movable towers could be pushed against the curtain wall. As well as providing a degree of protection for those within, a belfry could overlook the interior of a castle and offer an advantageous position from which to unleash missiles. As a result, bowmen and crossbowmen were often in the siege towers. [ 179 ]

Véase también

Referencias

Notas
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  • Higham, Robert; Barker, Philip (1992), Timber Castles , London: BT Batsford, ISBN 0-7134-2189-4  
  • Johnson, Matthew (2002), Behind the Castle Gate: From Medieval to Renaissance , London: Routledge, ISBN 0-415-25887-1  
  • Liddiard, Robert (2005), Castles in Context: Power, Symbolism and Landscape, 1066 to 1500 , Macclesfield: Windgather Press Ltd, ISBN 0-9545575-2-2  
  • McNeill, Tom (1992), English Heritage Book of Castles , London: English Heritage and BT Batsford, ISBN 0-7134-7025-9  
  • Norris, John (2004), Welsh Castles at War , Stroud: Tempus, ISBN 0-7524-2885-3  
  • Nossov, Konstantin (2006), Indian Castles 1206–1526 , Osprey Publishing, ISBN 978-1-84603-065-9  
  • Schultz, James (2006), Courtly love, the love of courtliness, and the history of sexuality , Chicago: University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0-226-74089-8  
  • Smail, RC (1973), The Crusaders in Syria and the Holy Land , London: Thames and Hudson, ISBN 0-500-02080-9  
  • Stephens, WB (ed) (1969), "The castle and castle estate in Warwick" , A History of the County of Warwick 8 , http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=16051  
  • Thompson, Michael (1987), The Decline of the Castle , Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-32194-8  
  • Tillman, Curt (1958) (in German), Lexikon der Deutschen Burgen und Schlosser , 1 , Stuttgart: Anton Hiersemann  
  • Turnbull, Stephen (2003), Japanese castles 1540–1640 , Osprey Publishing, ISBN 978-1-84176-429-0  
  • Vann, Theresa M. (2006), "Castles: Iberia", in Alan V. Murray, The Crusades: An Encyclopedia: Volume I: A–C , ABC-CLIO, ISBN 978-1-57607-862-4  
  • Ward, Simon (2009), Chester: A History , Chichester: Phillimore, ISBN 978-1-86077-499-7  

Para leer más

  • Cathcart King, DJ (1983), Castellarium Anglicanum: An Index and Bibliography of the Castles in England, Wales and the Islands (two vols) , New York: Kraus International Publications, ISBN 0-527-50110-7  
  • Gravett, Christopher (1990), Medieval Siege Warfare , Oxford: Osprey Publishing, ISBN 0-85045-947-8  
  • Johnson, Matthew (2002), Behind the Castle Gate: From Medieval to Renaissance , London: Routledge, ISBN 0-415-26100-7  
  • Kenyon, J. (1991), Medieval Fortifications , Leicester: Leicester University Press, ISBN 0-7185-1392-4  
  • Monreal Y Tejada, Luis (1999), Medieval Castles of Spain (English ed.), Konemann, ISBN 3-8290-2221-2  
  • Pounds, NJG (1994), The Medieval Castle in England and Wales: A Social and Political History , Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-45828-5  
  • Thompson, MW (1991), The Rise of the Castle , Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-37544-4  

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