Throughout the world, there is a large number of castles, palaces and fortresses. Many of these structures were built hundreds of years ago and are still present, making them historically important. Having stood the test of time, castles, palaces and fortresses have often come to serve as an iconic symbol of a city, a region or a sovereign nation. In many places, these unique buildings are open to the public for visits and some are the most popular tourist attractions. Each type was built for a special purpose. Although they are completely different, however, the terms are frequently used interchangeably. To clear up any confusion, this article looks more closely at the differences between castles, palaces and forts.
What are the castles?
In short, castles are large residences or a group of large buildings that have been built with sturdy walls to protect themselves from attack. In other words, castles are fortified residences. They were first built by European royalty during the Middle Ages in Europe and the Middle East. As part of their defensive strategy, castles were often surrounded by ditches to hinder attacks. Other common architectural features include openings for shooting arrows in the high walls and gatehouses, both useful for defensive measures. In general, castles are either inhabited by a lord or nobleman and were originally used as a base from which to govern the surrounding area. These structures often served as a place of protection, a military center,
What are the buildings?
A palace, on the contrary, serves primarily as a residential place, occupied by royalty, heads of state or church leaders (such as bishops and archbishops). Unlike castles, the buildings are not fortified against attacks, but rather designed for comfort and elegance. These structures are known to be large and to have a sophisticated architectural style. Their interiors are often finished with luxurious materials such as gold and marble. Furthermore, the buildings are often surrounded by lush gardens with landscaped gardens. The first buildings were those located on the Palatine Hill in Rome, where the imperial centers were. Over time, the name of the hill came to mean the name of its elegant houses. Today, many buildings are still in use as museums, houses of Parliament, hotels or offices.
What are the strong?
A fort is different from both castles and palaces as it is not a residence, but rather a military fortification. These structures were built specifically for war purposes and are used to defend specific territories. The forts date back thousands of years, beginning with the walled cities, and have been used across cultures as a means of defense and protection. These structures are thought to be the predecessor of the castles. Furthermore, they can be permanent or temporary, such as those erected quickly during periods of battle. Although their use remained the same throughout their existence, their architectural style was forced to change with the advent of cannons and, later, with explosives. Around the time of the First World War,