Castle Gatehouse

 Purpose of the Castle Gatehouse
The Castle Gatehouse was the main entrance to the castle and therefore needed to be heavily guarded. It was defended by at least one portcullis which was a heavy grilled door that dropped vertically down to protect the main entrance. The Castle Gatehouse might also contain murder holes and arrowloops in the side walls. The Gatehouse, or main entrance, would be heavily barred. The Chapel was occasionally  built in this vicinity - behind the Gatehouse. The enemy would then be seen to fire on the Chapel as they were attacking the main entrance to the castle - God was seen as being on the side of the Defenders of the castle!
 
 
 
Parts of a Castle
Castles Index 

Castle Gatehouse

  • Description of a castle Castle Gatehouse
  • What was the purpose of the Castle Gatehouse?
  • How did Castle Gatehouse help with Castle defences?
  • How was the Castle Gatehouse defended?

Castle Gatehouse

Description of the Castle Gatehouse
The Castle Gatehouse a fortified structure built over the gateway to a castle.

  • The Castle Gatehouse was built up to three three storeys high
    • Ground floor contained the guard rooms
    • First floor contained guard quarters and the machinery to operate the portcullis
    • Top floor stored weapons and murder holes

Origin, Meaning of the word 'Castle Gatehouse'
The Origin and Meaning of the word 'Castle Gatehouse' derives from the original word 'gate' which was later combined with the fortified structure built over the gateway giving the word 'Gateway'.

Introduction of the Castle Gatehouse
The Castles were protected by a strong gate dating back to the Bronze Age Hillforts and the great Roman structures. Even Hadrians Wall featured gatehouses. The Castle Gatehouse featured strongly in Concentric Castles. The nature and complexity of the Concentric castles resulted in the inclusion of several gatehouses in the Castle design and architecture.

The Castle Gatehouse
Facts and information about the many different parts of Castles! The Castle Gatehouse was an essential Castle part for ensuring a safe retreat against intrusion or invasion!

Castle Gatehouse

Parts of a Castle

  • What were the purpose of the different parts of the Medieval Castle?
  • What was the difference between the parts of a castle called the Garderobe and the Wardrobe?
  • Identifying parts of a castle - Description, purpose and function of the  Moat, Dungeon and Portcullis
  • Description, purpose and function of the Barbican, Gatehouse, Crenellations and Drawbridge
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