By Christopher Gravett
Following the construction of the Duchy of Normandy, the Normans have been quickly brought to the citadel they usually outfitted them in huge numbers. within the mid-11th century, different Norman adventurers started carving out dominions for themselves in Southern Italy: a few crossed to Sicily in 1061 and by way of 1091 had conquered the complete island. As in Normandy, they have been willing to assimilate new principles, together with architectural kinds, leading to a few impressive structures. This identify, a spouse to citadel thirteen: Norman Stone Castles (1) The British Isles 1066-1216, offers an in depth advisor to the castles in-built Normandy, Southern Italy and Sicily, protecting protective rules, everyday life, the occasions of siege struggle, and the destiny of the castles.
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Additional resources for Norman Stone Castles (2): Europe 950-1204 (Fortress)
The three sieges by William give an interesting insight into his methods. He was cautious in assaulting a powerfully sited castle with (at least in the cases of Brionne and Arques and probably at Domfront) some stone defences. Nevertheless he was swift to seize the opportunity for a surprise move, as at Alencon. His vigorous investment of the city may, if the stories are true, have been the result of loss of temper at insults aired, but he may have decided that the defences could be breached, and the story of the hides may possibly have been invented to cover up a sudden fit of blood lust, for hides were used as a protection against fire.
Philip then took the whole province up to Barfleur, Cherbourg and Domfront. The citizens of Rouen and Verneuil and the garrison of Arques asked for 40 days in order to send messages to King John. No help came, for John feared treachery at home, and these places submitted. Normandy was lost forever. A plan of Arques. Southern Italy and Sicily The Norman incursions into Italy and Sicily saw periods of similar turmoil as these northern adventurers carved out territories for themselves and then attempted to hold them.
Then the lookouts discovered that the enemy was increasingly imbibing local red wine, which helped them to keep out the cold. The Normans sized up the situation and, one night when they were reasonably sure their enemies were sleeping from the effects, seized their chance. Moving silently on the thick snow, they were able to overpower the sentries, surprise the besiegers and capture their siege lines. The ringleaders were summarily hanged, though Malaterra glosses over the fate of others. Roger II of Sicily managed to ride the revolt against him by avoiding battle and holding his castles securely.