Wednesday, July 11, 2012

"Have fun storming the castle!"

Perhaps because it is made of reddish stone-visually similar to modern brick- Carlisle Castle does not at first glance look all that old.  But it is an ancient place with construction on the site of a previous Roman fort beginning in 1093.

I had a chance to visit it this spring.  In fact my brother and his wife did tour it and said it was very interesting.  But I was in a funny mood that day.  I walked up to the front gate, peered inside and decided that, heck, my ancestors were not the sort of folks who would ever be invited in the front door of the place.  No, they would be the folks wandering around back looking for a sneaky way in.

Nope, that looks a bit too snug.

Slightly more promising....

Yes, that might work.

But if you really want to storm a castle "old school" you need to look for something like this:

This is a garderobe, basically an outhouse built into the battlements.  As it is presumably long out of commission we can chance a closer peek.

Yes, a hardy band of intruders shinnying up the garderobe has been the downfall of many a castle back in the day, with Chateau Gaillard being an notable example.  True, the strategem is not without an element of risk, but hey, even the worst case scenario beats boiling oil.

Next time I promise to be a more conventional visitor and come in via the front gate. It really is a cool castle.

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