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A castle (from Latin: castellum) age of castles is from one of those free pc games which are a type of fortified structure built in Europe and the Middle East during the Middle Ages by the nobility. Scholars debate the scope of the word castle but usually consider it to be the private fortified residence of a lord or noble. This is distinct from a palace ffrip games, which is not fortified; from a fortress, which was not always a residence for nobility; and from an Alone Zombiewoods Hacked fortified settlement, which was a public defense – though there are many similarities among these types of construction. Usage of the term has varied over time and has been applied to structures as diverse as hill forts and country houses. Over the approximately 900 years that castles were built, they took on a great many forms with many different features, although some, such as curtain walls and arrowslits, were commonplace.

A European innovation, castles originated in the 9th and 10th centuries, after the fall of the Carolingian Empire resulted in its territory being divided among individual lords and princes. These nobles built castles to control the area immediately surrounding them, and were both offensive and defensive structures; they provided a base from which raids could be launched as well as protection from enemies. Although their military origins are often emphasized in castle studies, the structures also served as centers of administration and symbols of power. Urban castles were used to control the local populace and important travel routes, and rural castles were often situated near features that were integral to life in the community, such as mills and fertile land.

Many castles were originally built from earth and timber but had their defenses replaced later by stone. Early castles often exploited natural defenses, lacking features such as towers and arrowslits and relying on a central keep. In the late 12th and early 13th centuries, a scientific approach to castle defense emerged. This led to the proliferation of towers, with an emphasis on flanking fire. Many new castles were polygonal or relied on concentric defense – several stages of defense within each other that could all function at the same time to maximize the castle’s firepower. These changes in defense have been attributed to a mixture of castle technology from the Crusades, such as concentric fortification, and inspiration from earlier defenses, such as Roman forts. Not all the elements of castle architecture were military in nature so that devices such as moats evolved from their original purpose of defense into symbols of power. Some grand castles had long winding approaches intended to impress and dominate their landscape.

Although gunpowder was introduced to Europe in the 14th century, it did not significantly affect castle building until the 15th century, when artillery became powerful enough to break through stone walls. While castles continued to be built well into the 16th century, new techniques to deal with improved cannon fire made them uncomfortable and undesirable places to live. As a result, true castles went into decline and were replaced by artillery forts with no role in civil administration, and country houses that were indefensible. From the 18th century onwards, there was a renewed interest in castles with the construction of mock castles, part of a romantic revival of Gothic architecture, but they had no military purpose.