A castle, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, is "a massive edifice, generally of the medieval period, fortified against attack with strong walls, battlements, towers, and frequently a moat." Because the structures above are referred to as castles, yet they appear to be as structurally equipped for combat as a fruit pastille. It's possible that some were used for defense, but most served as royal residences.
That being said, not all buildings which function today as castles were actually used for defending towns or kingdoms. Some were simply built as homes for wealthy individuals while others were designed by famous architects such as Gaudi or Rockefeller. There are also many castles that were converted into other things such as churches or museums.
For example, one of the most famous castles in the world is Castle Rock, located in the U.K. The structure was originally built in 1066 by William the Conqueror as part of his plan to settle the country. Since then it has been through several changes of ownership and use, but today it serves as a museum devoted to medieval life.
There are many more examples could be given, but these are the most common uses for castles. It's interesting to note that although they were often used for defense, many castles were also used against their owners by rebels who took advantage of the protected locations they provided. This is why many castles have had multiple owners over time - sometimes they were attacked and destroyed, but then rebuilt larger and better protected than before.
The term "castle" comes from the old English word "castel," which means "settlement."
Castles were first built in Europe by the Romans. They were used as military fortifications and as centers for government administration. Over time, they became more secure and exhibited greater architectural complexity. By the 11th century, many castles were being built across England.
In order to be classified as a true castle, it must have one or more of the following: large areas of enclosed courtyard space; high walls with deep excavations known as ditches outside the wall; an impressive tower; or the ability to fire arrows over the heads of attacking enemies.
During the 11th century, civil wars broke out between different factions within British society. Many of these conflicts were fought out on European battlefields but others took place back home among the inhabitants of small towns and cities. These so-called "town wars" resulted in many damaged or destroyed settlements. It was during this time that soldiers began to build their own shelters near where they stood guard at night. In these makeshift barracks, officers would sleep while men armed with spears or swords kept watch outside its gates.
A castle town is a village established around or around a castle. In Medieval Europe, castle towns were frequent. Small towns like Alnwick and Arundel, for example, are still dominated by their castles. Larger cities like York and London had large castle sectors.
Castle towns usually have the word "castle" in their names to indicate this fact: Ashford, Castle Hill, Dover, Hoddesdon, Ludlow, Norton-sub-Graindoun, Strensham.
They can also be known as garrison towns because they often housed soldiers loyal to the king. These people could be knights who served under different kings, but even ordinary men-at-arms would become very rich if they were lucky enough to be given land by their lord after winning battles. The most famous of all castle towns is probably York where the king of England was crowned until he went up north to be emperor of Germany too!
There are still some castle towns in Europe, especially in the United Kingdom where buildings used by the military are called barracks while homes for civilians are called houses. These areas often contain high concentrations of army personnel due to the need for guards and other armed forces personnel.