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Orford [Castle]

Orford [Castle]

Artist: Blore, Edward

Medium: Pencil on paper

Date: 1872

Shelfmark: Additional MS 42023

Item number: f62

Length: 19.2

Width: 18.4

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Topographical Drawing

Drawing of the rear of the great keep of Orford Castle in Suffolk. This castle was built on the Suffolk coast on the orders of Henry II, to create a royal stronghold in the East Anglia region. It was completed quickly, being built between 1165-73. It is remarkable because of its polygonal keep, which was one of the first of this type. The idea behind it was that a polygonal keep was less easily undermined than a traditional keep. This one had an incredible 21 sides, was 90 ft tall and composed of 5 storeys. As this view shows it had three buttress turrets. Each contained rooms on all storeys including kitchens, a chapel, closet and prison cells.

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