Why Did William The Conqueror Build Castles? One of the most powerful ways William could take control of a kingdom was, to have castles built all over the land.At first he kept it simple the famous Motte and Bailey castles.All it consisted was an earth mound this was the Motte topped with a tower which first were wooden but later became stone. To make the towers more sturdy. The Bailey was an enclosed area on a lower mount. Placed next to the motte. Inside the bailey the kings men lived, it had stools, livestock and household activities.
Wood To Stone. The first castles were made of wood but were not very sturdy as they rotted fast, and was easy for the enemy to burn. So William ordered the construction of Stone castles. Stone castles were much more sturdy, did not rot like wood, and also were much more able to withstand any attack by an invader. Over the centuries after William was king, other kings ordered elaborate castles to be built.
Castles Not Just Fit For The King. Castles were not just used by the king. A king, in fact, granted most castles, to their most loyal subjects, knights or barons who fought for them in battle and supported their king. The king, starting with William the Conqueror, gave his loyal knights vast estates and permission to build castles. In return, he expected these men (most of who were given the titles of earl or lord) to control their lands as the king's representative, to keep the local population from rebelling, and to force them to work and pay rent to the lord (who then passed it onto the king). William
How Were Castles Attacked? Fire. Fire was a good way of attacking the wooden motte and bailey castles. The fire might be started by building a bonfire against the outer wooden fence or, more usually, by archers shooting fire-arrows into the castle. As the fire spread through the castle those living inside would be forced to leave allowing the attackers to take them prisoner or kill them. This was one of the reasons why Motte and Bailey castles were soon replaced by Stone Keep castles. Fire has little effect on a stone castle. Windsor Castle on fire
How Were Castles Attacked? Battering Ram. The Battering Ram was mostly used against doors and thin walls. It consisted of knocking a chopped tree against its target with the strength of 6-10 men. Older Battering Rams had a roof made of iron to stop objects and boiling water. Pickaxes. Pickaxes were used against older castles in which the wall were very thin. They could make a hole through a wall in a matter of days. Even though effective against timber and thin stone, they were useless against bigger castles.If a castle's door was made of wood, pickaxes could destroy it very hastily.
How Were Castles Attacked? Diggers Diggers were used to destroy castle walls. Normally they dug near a corner, the tunnel would be destroyed making the wall or tower collapse. Siege The most common and effective way to attack a castle was with siege. A castle would normally last many months. Food was the most common reason of the defenders' fall. In some castles, the lord would get rid of all the women, old men and kids to preserve food. Usually they escaped through a tunnel, but sometimes no such tunnel existed and they had to stay inside the castle hoping for mercy.The invaders surrounded the castle firing projectiles at the defenders. Tapestry
How Were Castles Attacked? Trebuchets and catapults, were the most common ways to not only besiege a castle, but also spread diseases by firing dead bodies. Projectiles included: cows, huge rocks, dead humans and rotten meat. Ladders Also common, ladders were used against smaller castles. At a specific time, the attackers would send their army with many ladders hoping to climb the enemy's wall. This technique rarely worked since the defenders could throw objects or boiling water at their victims.To conclude, attacking a castle was very difficult. Almost invariantly more attackers than defenders died because the castle itself was a formidable protection. Unfortunately for the defenders, food was scarce and they depended on a relieving force in order to survive.
How were Castles Defended? Arrow loops. These were also known as arrow silts. These allowed defenders to fire the arrows at the attackers. The arrow silts were less than 2 inches wide and went up to 12 feet in height. Barbican Was a exterior defence protecting the entrance of the castle. It confined an approaching enemy to a narrow front, often leaving the attackers in the open, and offered an easy target for the castle defenders. Barbicans also confused the attackers, as they oftentimes found themselves in a hopeless maze of twists and turns. The most common type is a walled passage projecting from the front of the gatehouse.
How were Castles Defended? Batter, plinth or spur is the angled footing of a wall or tower. It was used to counter undermining or to cause dropped missiles to ricochet horizontally. This defensive invention also acted as a deflecting surface for battering rams, thus making them less effective. The battlements, or crenulations, provided a walk on the wall summit, a fighting platform and a defence against escalade (scaling the walls). They are also the distinguishing feature of a castle.
How were Castles Defended? A drawbridge was a moveable wooden bridge that gapped the castle ditch or moat. It could be removed or raised to prevent easy entry into the castle. The gatehouse was the entrance to the castle containing at least one portcullis that could be raised or lowered. The keep, great tower, or donjon was a self-sufficient, last resort, place of refuge used during a siege. Most keeps were square or rectangular in shape, although there were round keeps. Some keeps were over 80 feet high and had walls over 17 feet thick.
How were Castles Defended? Merlons are the solid parts of a crenulated parapet. They were sometimes pierced with arrow slits. Moats were kept full by a nearby water supply: a spring, lake, stream, or river. The builders would put a dam on the outlet side of the water supply, and control the water level in the moat. Some moats had stone casings, but most were left with earthen banks. Most castles, however, had dry moats, known simply as ditches.
How were Castles Defended? Murder holes are openings in a floor through which the castle defenders could drop missiles or liquids upon the attackers. Stones were the most often used missile. Boiling oil was not used, as it was a precious and should not be wasted. More than likely, if any boiling liquid was used, it was water. Murder holes were most often located in the vaulting over the gate passage. The parapet was an embattled wall shielding the castle defenders on the wall-walk. Almost all stone castles had towers. Some were flanking towers in the curtain wall, gatehouse towers, smaller stair, or mural towers. Towers provided access to the wall walks, lookout points and sleeping quarters for the castle garrison. Towers could be square, D-shaped, or round. They were important defensive features, as were the other ones mentioned above.
How did the materials castles were made out of change Wood castles, also known as the Motte and Bailey Castles were changed as I said earlier were not very sturdy and the enemies could easily burn it. Then there was the Stone Keep castles which were much more sturdier and if the enemies tried to burn it they wouldn’t be able to easily. That is why the simple Motte and Bailey castles were soon changed into the harder, tougher castles the Stone Keep castles.
What improvements were made to their design. First of all, they began to use stone instead of wood and earth. They made the ditches wider and deeper and filled them with water. They built the walls higher; they built towers at the corners; and they built two walls, an outer and an inner"curtain". They put the castles on high points, where they overlooked a large area of the countryside and where steep cliffs made it difficult, if not impossible, for attackers to get at the castle from one or more sides. Often, too, this high point commanded a narrow pass through hills or mountains, or stood just above a river so that no one could go up and down it in boats unless the noble who owned the castle allowed them to do so.
Why Did Castles Change. <ul><li>Stone was sturdier than wood. </li></ul><ul><li>Motte and Bailey castles the King could not see the whole land. </li></ul><ul><li>The Motte and Bailey castles did not have towers. </li></ul><ul><li>Motte and Bailey castles could have been burnt. </li></ul><ul><li>Motte and Bailey castles could not have a moat. </li></ul>
Tonbridge Castle. Tonbridge Castle is a big castle. I have chosen this castles as I have been there, and I really enjoyed my trip. Inside it is just like a medieval castle would be like. It has the smells of what it would be like and the sort of people who would been in there. It also has the sounds of what it would be like there, just like it has the sounds of arrows being fired when you reach the turret of the castle. It also has the ruins of the stone tower. It is a Stone Keep castle and is still very sturdy.
Tonbridge Castle: why did it change. Tonbridge Castle was built in 1066 it was originally a stone castle and it did have a stone tower, this was built just as the motte and bailey castles were becoming stone keep castles. It was built along side the river this may have been a moat in the earlier times.
Living in a Motte & Bailey Castle. Hello my name is Elizabeth but I like to be called Lizzy. I live in the bailey of the Kings castle, I work on a stool selling roasted chestnuts. In my spare time I enjoy watching the men in siege on the Pevensey hill, I get a good view, when they are on the hill. My husband, Cedric fights for the king in battle he is in charge of using the Battering Ram. I have been in the motte once to see the King, William I asked for a new stool mine was falling apart.
Living in a Stone Keep Castle. Hello my name is Katherine, though I much prefer to be called Kathy, I live in a Stone Keep Castle in Pevensey, I work as a battle tapestry stitcher I don’t enjoy this job but is has a high wage and my Father is sick and I need to pay for the doctor but the King wants a lot of money, so I don’t spend a penny. My boyfriend Gilbert is a trainee knight I don’t want him to go to battle but he says its his duty, so he will go and fight in 4 weeks. I enjoy the stories my Father tells me about the old motte and bailey castles, he was also a knight for the king in fact a Baron, a very important man.