Warwick Castle

Constructed around 914AD on the orders of Ethelfleda, daughter of Alfred the Great, Warwick Castle was at first only an earthen rampart on top of a hill built to protect the citizens of Warwick from Danish invaders. Over the centuries, several additions were made to strengthen the defenses and update the fortification.

  • 914 – Earthen rampart constructed by Ethelfleda
  • 1068 – William the Conqueror constructs a motte & bailey castle
  • 1088 – Henry de Beaumont becomes the1st Earl of Warwick
  • 1242 – The castle estate passes from Thomas (the last de Beaumont Earl of Warwick)to his sister, Margaret, and her husband John Du Plessis
  • 1260 – Stone is used in the castle construction in place of wood
  • 1264 – Simon de Montfort, the Earl of Leicester, and his rebel forces attack the castle during the Baron’s War
  • 1268 – On the death of William Mauduit, the castle passes to Mauduit’s nephew William de Beauchamp
  • 1312 – Piers Gaveston is tried and and sentenced to death for treason
  • 1395 – Guy’s Tower is completed
  • 1431 – Richard de Beauchamp, the Earl of Warwick, supervises the trial of Joan of Arc
  • 1445 – Henry de Beauchamp appointed as the first (and last) Duke of Warwick by King Henry VI
  • 1449 – Richard Neville, husband of Henry de Beauchamp’s sister, becomes the next Earl of Warwick. During his time as Earl, Richard managed to depose both Henry VI and Edward IV, effectively earning himself the title of “Kingmaker”
  • 1471 – Richard Neville dies as the Battle of Barnet

Sources:

“Warwick Castle.”  http://www.warwick-castle.co.uk/ (accessed October 14, 2009).

“Warwick Castle.” TimeRef – History Timelines. http://www.btinternet.com/~timeref/hpl630.htm (accessed October 14, 2009).

Additional Reading:

Brown, R. Allen ([2004] 1954). Allen Brown’s English Castles. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press.

Crouch, David (1982). “Geoffrey de Clinton and Roger, earl of Warwick: new men and magnates in the reign of Henry I”. Historical Research 60: 113–24.

Friar, Stephen (2003). The Sutton Companion to Castles. Sutton Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7509-3994-2.

Greville, Frances Evelyn Maynard (1903). Warwick Castle and its earls from Saxon times to the present day. Hutchinson.

Jacques, David (Summer 2001). “Warwick Castle Grounds and Park, 1743-60”. Garden History 29 (1): 48–63. doi:10.2307/1587354.  Retrieved on 19 June 2008.

Keightley, Thomas (1839). The History of England. Whittaker and co.. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=B3gsAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA254&lpg=PA254&dq=%22Piers+Gaveston%22+execution&source=web&ots=31URze-nMc&sig=Guha9w_D8RWL34PBybAf_6iJZEM&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=8&ct=result#PPA258,M1.

Liddiard, Robert (2005). Castles in Context: Power, Symbolism and Landscape, 1066 to 1500. Carnegie Publishing Ltd. ISBN 0-9545575-2-2.

14 thoughts on “Warwick Castle”

  1. I took a tour of Warwick Castle in 2004 and despite its touristiness, it’s still quite impressive. [I tried to put up links to 4 photos I have on photobucket, but wordpress won’t let me. Will it allow html to the photo’s in the form of

  2. Actually, I had tried to just post the URLs without the href, but here’s the message I got from wordpress then and now:

    Hmmm, your comment seems a bit spammy. We’re not real big on spam around here.

    Please go back and try again.

    send me an email and I’ll send you the links

  3. Absolutely worth seeing, just prepare for lots of people – especially in the summers when England is busiest. I went years ago. Late 80s when I was a kid. When I picture a castle in my mind, Warwick is what I see.

    The dungeon just has all sorts of creepy torture devices. I tried to find some good photos but neither flickr nor google images gave me much.

  4. It’s a great looking castle for sure, at least from the pictures.

    Joan, thanks for sending me those pictures. I thought the wax figures were real people at first.

  5. My eyes rolled when I first heard about the wax figures, but I sucked it up and paid the entrance fee anyway. I must say, I was really impressed by the scope and quality of the grounds. I highly recommend paying the price of admission and seeing to everyone who is able.

    Steven, I take it WordPress isn’t letting you display these photos as a reply either. You might be able to show them as a separate post if you are so inclined.

  6. Sorry for my delay replying–I was without access to the internet for a few days. Anyhoo–of course you may use those photos–that was my intention all along. Wot? You can’t read my mind? Sorry for not stating that when I sent them to you. Since my website deals mostly with my book (one currently published–two on the way), you may prefer to link to my blog, Random Thoughts of an Accidental Author. I really appreciate your linking to either or both.

  7. As well as an impressive architectural site, they also run events such as medieval jousting and you get to see demonstrations of medieval weapons and armour. I once attended a sales conference banquet at the castle – it was slightly on the cheesy side with jesters etc, but the food wasn’t bad!

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