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 in warfare, but most were built as homes for wealthy or powerful men.
They usually consisted of one main tower or keep (from which the name "keeps" originates) surrounded by an area enclosed by high walls. The term "castle" can also be applied to other large buildings such as government offices or religious institutions where security was important. Some castles were actually large cities with well-defended walled areas containing houses, markets, churches, etc. They were often the home city of a princely family or other noble clan.
In Europe, building activities relating to military defense began around 800 AD with the establishment of garrison towns by the Franks under Charlemagne. These towns were mainly intended to protect their inhabitants from invasion by pirates but they also served as centers of commerce and culture. During the 11th century, larger kingdoms began to build larger versions of these towns called citadels. They were generally located near important trade routes and sometimes served as jails too. The first real castles came about in the 12th century when knights who had been granted land by monarchs needed places secure enough to live out their days in peace.
The term "castle" comes from the old English word "castle," which means "settlement." The OED further states that castles were originally built by wealthy individuals as personal residences where they could be safe from harm.
As time passed, castles became places where kings and other powerful people lived. They are now only found in a few countries, such as England, France, and Germany, but many others had them once too. Today, most castles serve some sort of museum purpose or are used for other purposes such as offices or housing.
People begin building castles as early as 3500 B.C., but they don't become popular until about 1000 A.D. When knights began fighting in open fields instead of inside caves or trees, they needed better protection. Castles offered this protection and they soon became important landmarks within kingdoms.
Today, most people think of castles as living quarters made up of great halls, dining rooms, and hundreds of bedrooms. But that was not always the case. In fact, there are still several countries around the world that live in castles. They include Japan, Spain, Sweden, and the United States.
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 access to water through canals or rivers, which make them more secure than other villages. They also often have strong defensive walls. In addition, they may possess their own government or at least a mayor who is responsible for security and public services within the castle area.
The most famous castle town in England is York. It has been described as "Europe's largest medieval city," with three times as many buildings as London. The walls alone are over 1 mile long! Inside the walls is an even bigger complex of buildings. York is home to several universities including one of the oldest in the UK - University College York.
There are still lots of castles all over Europe, especially in England where nearly 100 castles stand today. Many of these are tourist attractions so you can visit them if you like. But some remain with their owners or in private hands and it is these that provide living conditions for people within their walls.
People have lived inside castles for hundreds of years.
Castle is a medieval fortification that serves as the residence of the king or lord of the land in which it sits. Strongholds with the same functions have been created all over the world, including Japan, India, and others. The term "castle" is sometimes used to refer to prehistoric earthworks,...
From the 11th century CE, rulers built medieval castles to demonstrate their wealth and power to the local populace, to provide a place of defense and safe retreat in the event of an attack, to defend strategically important sites such as river crossings, passages through hills, mountains, and borders, and as a place of habitation.
Castles were also used to store valuables or conduct business affairs. Some castles served all three purposes simultaneously. The castle at Windsor Castle in England was originally a simple wooden structure but has had several major renovations over time: 1066 - present day The first major renovation began in 1066 when William the Conqueror ordered that a stone wall be erected around his new castle base. This was done by local residents who received land upon completion of the project. The second major renovation occurred in 1220 when the previous king, Henry III, died without an heir. The throne passed to his daughter, Eleanor of Aquitaine, who took the name Empress Fredericka. She turned her attention to improving security at her home town of Winchester and hired French architects to design and build her a new set of walls for her estate. These new walls are what you see today of the castle at Winchester.
Winchester is only one of many English castles built with help from outside architects. In fact, most castles were not designed by their owners but instead were commissioned from professional builders.