Medieval Castle Anatomy 101

My Literary Quest

For those of you writing epic or swords and sorcery fantasy, or anything set in Medieval times, this post is for you.  Chances are that somewhere in your story there will be a castle and you will need to be familiar with some basic terminology.  Most castles are very similar in their layout.
Inner ward –  large inner courtyard, usually surrounding the keep

Inner curtain – A high wall surrounding the inner ward

Tower – a square or round structure built as part of the wall

Inner gate – gate leading to the inner ward

Outer gate – gate in the inner curtain, part of a gatehouse

Moat – pit around the castle, often filled with water.

Drum Tower – a short round tower built to support the wall

Outer curtain – the outermost wall defending the outer ward

Keep – the central most defensible part of a castle, where…

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