Being a lurker for many years, I finally decided to get moving and get building. My son is finally old enough to get interested in Legos, so this is the moment I have been waiting for.
But I thought I would post a parts of a paper I wrote for a college class some time ago, to see what the community thinks.
Types of Castles:
Fort: The most basic type of castle. Essentially and outer wall surrounding a military’s compound. The wall itself serves as little more than a barrier into and out of the facility, and is not designed to withstand modest assaults by enemy forces. It serves as a guard perimeter and to limit access to a compound. The simplest form of this is simply a trench and log-wall design used to fortify a position [hence the term] up through the beginning of the 20th century.
Mott and Bailey: The next logical expansion of the Fort principle. It features a large enclosed area and a secondary elevated structure. The enclosed area is similar to a fort, but usually with very limited access – one or two gates. This is where the main body of supplies and animals are kept, and serves as a troop marshalling area. The secondary structure, the bailey, is elevated and is accessible only through the mott. It serves as a lookout post, and a place for archers and primitive artillery pieces to defend the fort. Mott and Baileys are often surrounded by a moat for added security.
Keep: A keep is A fortification where the living quarters for the defenders are enclosed within the primary defensive structures. The primary structures are heavy walls, few if any low windows, and fortified entry points. A keep may be a large building with few doors and high, narrow windows. This does not exclude the keep having open spaces in its interior, however. It may also be a thick walled structure with a central courtyard. If the living quarters are attached to the outer wall and the open courtyard is only for drayage, then it is a keep.
Castle: A castle is a fortification where the primary living quarters is NOT attached to the primary defensive structures. A heavy outer wall surrounding self-contained buildings is the common castle design. These interior buildings generally are not designed to withstand enemy assault. Castles tend to be larger than keeps, as walls can be easily extended or added as the needs of the castle grows. This leads to concentric castles, with multiple defensive walls and overlapping fields of fire.
Fortress: A fortress is a combination of Castles, keeps, and forts. Large integrated structures, keeps with outer walls, walled cities with fortified troop posts scattered throughout all qualify as fortresses. Fortresses are usually defined by their scale.