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What got you into Castles?

Discussion of topics concerning life in the middle ages around the world, including architecture, history, and warfare.

Postby tw0nst3r » Sat Jul 16, 2005 7:25 am

A guy in my trigonometry class in high school introduced me to D&D. That year, I walked through Tolkein's Middle Earth and C.S. Lewis' Narnia and L. Frank Baum's Oz, played in Piers Anthony's Xanth and Weis and Hickman's Krynn, and drew castles, dragons, and weapons instead of learning math like I should have. :oops:
Our gaming group had rich experiences together in dream worlds and the real world, and when I went off to college, some of my classes (and ultimately my first major, architecture) were chosen by how useful they might be for D&D. Classes in Kendo and medieval history fueled my interest, making castle-y stuff a part of who I always will be.
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Postby Legomaat » Sun Jul 17, 2005 7:14 am

As a child, I was interested in castles in a usual way, like most kids do. Everything that had something to do with knights, horses, tournaments and the like. Later on, came the question: “How did they do it”. And this question still remains. How did those dudes build their sometimes colossal edifices, without having the mighty machines and cranes we have today.
How erected the Greek and the Romans their huge columns and capitals, and how did they construct and place the entablature on them. How moved the Egyptians their enormous blocks for their pyramids…..

The original castles may look a rather dull – all the ornaments en embellishments are additions from later centuries - ,but it were masterpieces of design and construction. I am fascinated by the way they were build and that is why I build my castles as real as possible.
Even the bond of the bricks tallies where possible. So, my castles do have interiors and everything, but no hinges. Real castles don’t have them either..
Besides, it would be too heavy to function properly.

But I am deviating off topic…..
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Postby Cat » Fri Jul 22, 2005 1:11 pm

I think it was reading the Arthur legends as well as others already mentioned (like LOTR, The Narnia Series and even the Wizard of Earthsea to some extent).

Once started, it just cascaded. Somehow, it evokes ideas of a simpler, more noble age...
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Postby The Blue Knight » Mon Aug 01, 2005 5:53 pm

Original D&D was a big influence for me as well, but by the late 70's when I started playing modules were available. But we still made our own adventures.

Castles evoke in me a sense of permanence, of safety. My mother grew up in Birmingham England, and told me about castles she got to visit as a girl. I'm still waiting to make my first trip over to see some for myself.

Castles also bring up in my mind a time that I once thought was simpler. That illusion has been shattered, that earlier people were simple, less complicated. But that complexity is a human trait, not a modern one. They had less technilogical advancement, but were no less sophisticated.

The Arthurian myths pull on me even now. Ideals like selflessness, bravery and right winning out over profane, all that and Chivalry, and companion concepts such as bushido.

Of course we romantisize don't we? No running water, no Legos, no cotton underwear! Egads!
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Postby boses » Mon Aug 01, 2005 6:14 pm

I found castle, specifically fantasy-castle to be something I could embrace,

and live out, as a imagination turned even the most mundane

of enviroments into an adventure...Wooden swords became enchanted

blades, simple hand made capes became displacement cloaks, and storm

drains became ancient tunnels to magic realms...

With the exception of the 'lightsaber" I found it hard to duplicate any of the

elements found in sci-fi stories, and it was the transferablity of objects and

characters that made castle, and fantasy-castle so appealing...

While any of my friends or I could have whipped out a nerf ballzooka and

claimed to be the terminator or something, many of us had real sword

wielding skill, and at least amongst my friends and myself, being

proficient in castle construction techniques and wooden sword fighting skills

meant much more then starships or laser cannons...
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Postby Mr. D » Sat Aug 06, 2005 3:25 pm

It all started with Well, almost. One day I was on the internet searching for LEGO websites and I though "Hey, why don't I look for castle LEGOs?" so I did. I found c-c almost right away, and I was hooked on Castle LEGO from then on. I think all boys, young men, and men have an interest in weapons. In some, it's stifled by video games (don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with video games, and I know that some people's interest in weapons is heightened by some video games) or something else, but it is there, at least to begin with. So being interested in Castle LEGO, loving history (and liking medieval history a lot), loving to read and reading books like The White Company ,by A. Conan Doyle, and Robin Hood, and liking weapons, all combined to produce a love of all things medieval, specifically the high Middle Ages in Europe. And being on c-c and seeing all that guys like Blasterman and TTK knew helped inspire me to want to learn more. :wink: A friend of mine is really into Castle, so he likes to talk about it and lend me books, so that just kind of cements everything. He is now starting to get into German longsword fighting, so I am too; it's pretty cool. 8)

So I guess you could say...

"Just thank LEGO"!

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Postby Blueandwhite » Tue Aug 09, 2005 4:49 pm

Now this is a loaded question.

Strangely enough, I don't find the every day history of the middle ages to be particularly interesting. I find Victorian England and the Industrial Revolution to be far more compelling. That being said, there is no greater period in art history (at least, in my humble opinion) than the period spanning from the late middle ages to the high renaissance (noteably in Italy).

Developments made in architecture, sculpture and particularly in painting, up to and including the renaissance have always captivated me. Accordingly, I hold the works of architects like Filippo Brunelleschi, or Donato Bramante in the higest regard. Simply put, despite the petty feudal disputes typical to that age, artistic achievement was at an all time high.

And lets face it, who doesn't like the master painters of the High Renaissance? For me, there is no greater period in art history than the period between the 1480s and mid 1500s. The achievments made during that time are unrivalled to this day.

In short, I'm still into castle LEGO because I have a passion for the art of that period. Building is often an excuse to crack open a good book on European art or architecture of the 16th century.
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Postby Lord Nev » Sat Feb 25, 2006 2:20 am

Yes, I am on the same page with Venvorskar. My castleness was sparked with the onset of LOTR.
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Postby Slobey » Sat Feb 25, 2006 3:56 am

I started to become interested in pre-gunpowder warfare by lending out picture books on the subject before I could read.

I've always found stories founded in the past, the future or some altenate reality (fantasy) more intersting than those set in the present.

I first read LOTR when I was 10 or 11 and it's snowballed from there.

Growing up my brother and sisters decided we should choose lego themes to stop the brawling (quite diplomatic for 4 children all under the age of 10) and I naturally chose castle.

The rest as they say is history
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Postby fuzzy » Sat Feb 25, 2006 11:33 am

for me, it started with my dad finding an old castle set in the basement.
I have been hooked ever since
I have 17 historical books on castle,
15 are from england
7 swords,3 tower sheilds, 9 helmets.

It is not a hobby, but an obsession :twisted:
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Postby rogue27 » Sat Feb 25, 2006 2:55 pm

Reading a version of King Arthur in middle school.
Getting Dragon Warrior for the NES.
Reading the "Lone Wolf" books.
Having access to quality Lego Castle sets.
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Postby Sheen » Sat Feb 25, 2006 7:13 pm

For me the appeals are many. I have always been an avid reader, and reading about anything set in a modern or future time doesn't seem relaxing to me, it seems stressful to be reminded about everything going on around me! When I read, I prefer an escape, and what better escape can there be than to a time and world where the good guys always win and nobody has heard of traffic jams? Everything took place in a slower time, it took weeks to travel, months to stage an army and years to conquer land. It also took years to learn. I'm a person that appreciates the acquisition of knowledge and that leads me to a total fascination of wizards. The fact that some scrawny old guy could take on enemies with the power of his mind is just cool, and they are also represented frequently as the best-learned scholars of their time. Last, I study martial arts, and the slow pace that has to be accepted in order to train the body to do what it needs to without the mind harkens, I think, back to the day of knights and assasins that took lifetimes to become skilled, rather than a few weeks of boot camp to learn to throw grenades and pull triggers. (That said I wish to express my appreciation to anyone willing to serve their country in the military, I just wish you could be training on horses instead of tanks!)

All that being said, I'm glad to be born when I was, since I can't see beyond the end of my nose without my contacts and have had several surgeries that I'm sure I wouldn't have lived through without modern medicine!! :)

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Postby wunztwice » Sun Feb 26, 2006 7:54 am

This post is older than my membership. 'course that's not saying alll to much.
Anyways, I don't really know what first sparked my interest in castles. I have always REALLY been into history. That probably started when I was like 4 or 5 and found out both my grandfathers were in WWII, from there I guess it snowballed. My second actual set of legos (not including tubs, and the shell station being my first.) was a small pirates raft with three guys. It was made out of barels. So I was hooked on pirates then, and naturally as I found some castle legos (small sets, which were actually really good) I entered my castle-ness. I also read alot (important for any inspiring historian) and my mom suggested the Hobbit, and following that the Narnia, and then LOTR. And multiple other books. So, like alot of us here that's how I got started. I still am very interested in history and was considering it as a minor for a while, but those are such a pain.

Neet post, I hope others continue it!
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Postby The Green Knight » Sun Feb 26, 2006 9:14 pm

Whoa! Ok this is a great thread that I don’t believe I’ve ever seen before. Kudos to Nev for bringing it back to the top.

What got me into Castley stuff? It was legos. When I first started liking legos, castle was not my favorite theme. It still isn’t actually. See, I’m a Time Cruisers guy. NO, don’t run away! I’m not crazy I tell ya. And I’m kidding either, but this thread isn’t here for me to explain why I like Time Cruisers so I’m not going to talk about that.

Castle— What really got me into castle was a website I found while looking for lego stuff on the web. This was before Classic Castle was invented and the big castley type site back then was Castle World. Man, I loved that site. I think it’s gone now or something, but I’m pretty sure you could say that this site sprang from its ashes.

Anyway, on the site they had a page called Ballads. Therein lay the links to all the great lego castle stories of the time. Andrestavia, Valkaria, Ikros, and many others. It was similar to the Ultimate Stories List thread in the Stories board. It was the stories that reeled me in. I thought then and I still do, that no other theme has a setting more natural or fertile for the sowing of good stories. Space doesn’t have it. Town doesn’t have it. Wild West and Pirates are very close, but Castle still edges them out. The other thing that lured me in was something that became a bit of an obsession for me and I can blame it on Castle World as well.

You see, they also had a page on that site about creatures. Or maybe that was just on the Isle of Mist page. No I think it was on the main page. Anyway, also at time I discovered the castle sites, there were some real cool things happening. The Gathering. The Isle of Mist. And with all the stories, the creatures, plus the events synching the deal, I was hooked.

Nowadays I’ve broadened my themes to include other settings I like. Pirates, Dickens era England, ancient celts and other stuff.

So for me, Lego Castle came first. Then came everything else castle related in my life.
LEGOFREAK wrote:so anyway, what I think for myself is that the idea of the chivalrous knight has always fascinated, and inspired me.
You know I think every man in the world wants to be like that in his heart. Maybe he doesn’t know it, but I think it’s there in most of us. The urge to protect the weak and innocent, to lead, to defend the women and children, to know without a doubt that we are doing right by God and man. It seems unattainable today, but I think it’s possible when a man has the right guide and his strength is well placed.

Still, it’s a lot easier to read about it or build about it then to live it, which may be why most of us idealists and romantics find ourselves writing ballads instead of living them.
Let us stop for a moment and ponder the signiture...

Ok, enough of that!
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Postby Scnicker » Sun Feb 26, 2006 9:24 pm

There was only one reason for me to start castle-ing and it was the Ottomans. In our history lessons, I've heard too much on how we conquered many places and I was pretty attracted to the medieval life because of that. What got me out of my dark ages were pirates and I would have continued in that genre if it wasn't for our historical background ;)

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