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CASTLES OF THE MEDIEVAL ERA Not so long ago there was a period in time where kings ruled the lands and knights took their directions The feudal system was thriving and life was good This time was the Middle Ages The Middle Ages took their effect in the thirteenth fourteenth and fifteenth centuries During this time kings and lords built large forts to protect their strongholds However they were more than just forts They were giant buildings of war buildings called castles WHAT IS A CASTLE As you probably already know or have inferred the word castle comes from a Latin word meaning fortress With their origin stretching back to the ninth century castles were used by kings lords and nobles to strengthen their strongholds within the castles infrastructure The stronghold was where the king or lord lived and also stood as the most vital structure of the entire castle The castle itself was basically just a large wall around the stronghold but it proves to be much more Later castles became very important in Western Europe in the late AD 900s and the 1000s They played a central role in the political and military system called feudalism In the Middle Ages Europe was divided into many small states and local conflicts were common A castle helped the owner or owners defend the land where the castle stood It also provided a home for the monarch or nobles family and servants In addition a castle served as a barracks prison storehouse armory treasure house and center of local government However before the 1100s most castles were made of timber and earth resources but time grew on and enemies began attacking with unmerciful force As the violence intensified castles needed improved defense capabilities HOW DOES THE CASTLE PROVIDE DEFENSE In addition to providing support for defense of the stronghold and occupants castles now needed to defend everything else on the estate For
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