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Caernarvon Castle 39

Caernarvon Castle 39

Photographer: Sedgfield, W. Russell

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1864

Shelfmark: C.44.d.7,8

Item number: 39

Genre: Photograph

“The castles of Caernarvon, Beaumarais, and Conway, all on this north-west coast of Wales, are monuments of the subjection of the Principality by Edward I. Other castles on this coast he took and strengthened, for instance those of Flint and Rhuddlan, as yokes on the necks of the North Welsh; these three he built expressly for that purpose, and, though all now more or less in ruin, they remain splendid evidences of his power, and of the architectural taste of the age. We have not finer specimens of castellated building than in the fortresses of Caernarvon and Conway... Even the Welsh, who do not forget the object of their erection, yet regard them with pride.

...The foundations of [Caernarvon Castle] are surrounded on three sides by water. It is bounded on one side by the Menai Straits, on another by the estuary of the Seoint, the river which runs hither from the Lake of Llanberis. As you approach the castle, its walls and towers have an air of lightness, which deceives you completely as to its strength, for these walls are immensely thick and strong. The doorways in the gateway towers and the windows are more lofty and graceful than the doors and windows generally in castles of that age. The walls enclose an area of about three acres, and are themselves from seven and nine feet thick. They have within them each a gallery, with slips for the discharge of arrows, and are flanked by thirteen towers, all angular, but differing in the number of their angles.”

Excerpts from “Caernarvon Castle”, in ‘Ruined Abbeys and Castles of Great Britain and Ireland’ by William Howitt.

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