Carisbrooke Castle; General View
Photographer: McLean & Melhuish
Medium: Photographic print
“The approach to the castle is by a gateway leading to a second. The smaller external gate was built by Queen Elizabeth: her initials and the date, 1598, appearing on it. With the exception of this gate, the additions of Elizabeth appear to have been confined to the outer wall, which she enlarged so as to comprehend its perfect extent; and to the domestic buildings, none of which appear older than her time. Amongst these latter are shown part of the chapel in which Charles I. was confined, with the window through which he attempted to escape…Advancing through the first and smaller gate, you behold the second and much grander one, flanked by two noble round towers. This was probably built by Lord Woodville, in the reign of Edward IV., for his arms are yet visible upon it. This aspect of the castle is extremely picturesque. The gateway is strikingly impressive, and the mouldering battlements, hung with luxuriant ivy, give to it the solemnity of ruin…But no part of the ancient remains is supposed to be of a higher date than the Norman period, erected by William Fitz-Osbourne, its first Norman lord, and his immediate successors. Considerable additions were made in the reign of Henry I.”
Excerpt from “Carisbrooke Castle”, in ‘Ruined Abbeys and Castles of Great Britain’ by William and Mary Howitt.