Tuesday, December 23, 2008

English Castles - Part 2

By C. LaRene Hall

After traveling back to England, the first castle we decided to go to was the Farleigh Hungerford ruins. The gatehouse was two stories and the arch was set in a square-headed recess into which the drawbridge closed. Above was the family coat of arms. The chapel was amazing and stood above a crypt where 16th and 17th century Hungerford’s are visible. Indented into them are the death masks of the deceased. Also around the sides of the tombs are coats of arms.

The only thing left of the 13th century Winchester Castle is the great hall. It is famous for King Arthur’s Round Table, which has hung in the hall since at least 1463. The many stain glass windows were stunning.

The Wolvesey castle ruins, is also in Winchester, and was formerly the principle residence of the Bishops of Winchester. The Roundheads destroyed it during the English Civil War in 1646.

One other place we visited that I consider a castle is Buckingham Palace. We arrived early enough to get a close spot to take pictures of the changing of the guards. Today this palace is the weekday home of the Queen and Prince Philip, the Duke of York, and the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

This certainly wasn’t the end of our trip, just the end of visiting castles. I'll be out of town for a week so next year, I’ll tell you about all the churches we saw along the way.


Cindy Beck, author said...

Loved the photos of the stained glass windows. I would never expected to find those in an old English castle!

Nichole Giles said...

Oh my gosh, I so want to go on a tour like that someday! I've always been fascinated with the story of King Aurthur and I'd love to visit all those beautiful castles.

Tours like that are how fairytales were invented. I'm sure of it.