Download E-books Castle: A History of the Buildings that Shaped Medieval Britain PDF

By Marc Morris

"Castle" is a wide-ranging heritage of a few of the main incredible structures in Britain. It explores a number of the country's most famed and best-loved castles, in addition to a few little-known nationwide treasures. the tale starts within the eleventh century, while castles have been brought to Britain, and results in the seventeenth century, once they have been mostly deserted. it's, in a few respects, an epic story, pushed via characters like William the Conqueror, "Bad" King John and Edward I, who, via construction and besieging castles, formed the destiny of the kingdom. whilst, even though, it's a extra homely tale, in regards to the adventures, struggles and objectives of lesser-known contributors, and the way each point in their lives was once wrapped up within the castles they outfitted. As Marc Morris exhibits, there's extra to castles than drawbridges and battlements, portcullises and arrow-loops. Be it ever so grand or ever so humble, a fort is at the beginning a house. it may well glance difficult and defensible at the outdoors, yet at the within, a fort is all approximately luxurious and creature comforts. within genuine castles, we do no inevitably locate cannons and fits of armour, yet we do realize nice halls, large kitchens, deepest chambers and chapels - all rooms that have been as soon as sumptuous and indulgent, and which made those constructions ideal apartments for his or her vendors. to appreciate castles - who equipped them, who lived in them, and why - is to appreciate the forces that formed medieval Britain.

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On the time, there have been lots of public professions of goodwill among the hot king and his maximum topic. Douglas declared himself able to be ‘ever servabile’ to his lord and grasp, whereas James declared himself overjoyed with the earl’s ‘singular favour, love and zeal’. in the back of the grins and the handshakes, besides the fact that, the rot had already set in. pushed via a greed for extra land, and inspired via the anti-Douglas participants of his council, James took good thing about William’s absence on pilgrimage and led an army development throughout the earl’s lands. He aimed to undermine the Douglas family’s strength and win away their supporters yet, a lot to his annoyance, the earl lower back and effectively reasserted himself. For a short whereas it was once all fake smiles back. In February 1452, in spite of the fact that, the king locate a brand new suggestion. He invited William to dinner at Stirling fortress and, after a hearty supper and some glasses of wine, individually stabbed him to demise. James Douglas, unexpectedly and without notice made earl, used to be below inspired. His brother have been promised a secure behavior by way of the king, in simple terms to be actually stabbed within the again. He spoke back by way of mounting a convey of defiance in Stirling, the location of his brother’s homicide, taking 600 males to burn the city, and parading the king’s letter of secure behavior in contempt. There a stressful three-year stand-off among the king and the recent earl, the only attempting to muster sufficient aid to complete the Douglases off as soon as and for all, the opposite attempting to rebuild his overdue brother’s shattered lordship. It used to be round this time that Threave fort was once altered out of all popularity. The wood household constructions have been pulled down, and the nice stone corridor and chapel structures have been levelled. of their position, utilizing a similar stone, the artillery platform was once equipped round the tower condo. a bit frustratingly, it isn't transparent which of the 2 Douglas brothers really instigated the rebuilding. The archaeological dig within the seventies published facts to signify the artillery platform dated to round 1450, yet we can’t make sure precisely whilst. it will possibly were William Douglas ahead of his loss of life in 1452, sensing that the wind was once commencing to blow opposed to him. both, it might probably were the paintings of James Douglas, a defiant reaction to his brother’s dying and a practise for a last showdown. considered one of the 2 Douglas boys replaced Threave from a snug neighborhood to a castle meant to resist cannon. Mons Meg. And with solid cause. James II, as well as his visible aptitude for other kinds of violence, was once specially into weapons. Artillery had come far seeing that its advent within the early fourteenth century, and James, in addition to having an excellent many smaller, anti-personnel weapons, was once in ownership of the most recent in gunpowder know-how. those have been large good things known as bombards – weapons designed and equipped expressly for the aim of destroying fortress partitions. the easiest instance in Britain is Mons Meg, a gift to James II from his partner's father (and fellow gun-enthusiast), the Duke of Burgundy.

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