William the Conqueror

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William the Conqueror Empty William the Conqueror

Post by kosovohp on Tue Sep 28, 2010 7:15 pm

Windsor Castle was originally built by William the Conqueror, who reigned from 1066 until his death in 1087. His original wooden castle stood on the site of the present Round Tower ("A"). The castle formed part of his defensive ring of castles surrounding London, the site chosen in part because of its easily defensible position.
Early in William's reign he had taken possession of a manor in what today is Old Windsor, probably a Saxon royal residence. A short time later between 1070 and 1086, he leased the site of the present castle from the Manor of Clewer and built the first motte-and-bailey castle. The motte is fifty feet (15 metres) high and consists of chalk excavated from a surrounding ditch, which then became a moat.
At this time the castle was defended by a wooden palisade rather than the thick stone walls seen today. The original plan of William the Conqueror's castle is unknown, but it was purely a military base, and nothing structural survives from this early period. From that time onwards the castle has remained in continuous use and has undergone numerous additions and improvements. His successor William II is thought to have improved and enlarged the structure, but the Conqueror's youngest son King Henry I was the first sovereign to live within the castle.

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