Medieval Castle Defence: How Did They Do It?

Medieval fortresses remain some of the most impressive structures in the world, not only because of their strategic defense systems but also because their construction and fortifications have stood the test of time.

The Towers

Castle towers were fortified structures that provided not only excellent look-out points but also allowed for flanking fire covering the runs of curtain walls. Windsor Castle in England is one of the best examples of tower fortifications, most notably its stunning Round Tower.

The Curtain Wall

The meaning of curtain wall is derived from the Latin word “cortina” meaning an enclosure surrounded by walls. Rhuddlan Castle has a good example of curtain walls that still stand strong today.

An outstanding example is the Theodosian Land Walls of Constantinople, built in the 5th century. These walls protected the city from inland invaders by connecting rectangular towers with massive curtain walls. Some sections of these huge walls are still standing in the old city area of Istanbul today.

Medieval Castle Defense: Weapons

Medieval castle defense required weapons to defend castles, much the same as the weapons used to attack castles. Both the invaders and the defenders used the technology available at the time.

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