Raglan Castle is a late medieval castle located just north of the village of Raglan. The modern castle dates from between the 15th and early 17th centuries, when the successive ruling families of the Herberts and the Somersets created a luxurious, fortified castle, complete with a large hexagonal keep, known as the Great Tower or the Yellow Tower of Gwent. Surrounded by parkland, water gardens and terraces, the castle was considered by contemporaries to be the equal of any other in England or Wales.
Following the Norman invasion of Wales, the area around the village of Raglan was granted to William FitzOsbern, the Earl of Hereford. Some historians suspect that an early motte and bailey castle may have been built on the Raglan site during this period.
The current Raglan Castle was begun by Sir William ap Thomas. In 1432 William purchased the manor of Raglan, where he had already been staying as a tenant, and commenced a programme of building work that established the basic shape of the castle as seen today, although most of, with the exception of the South Gate and the Great Tower, was later built over.
During the English Civil War the castle was held on behalf of Charles I but was taken by Parliamentary forces in 1646. In the aftermath, the castle was slighted, or deliberately put beyond military use; after the restoration of Charles II, the Somersets declined to restore the castle.
Raglan Castle became first a source of local building materials, then a romantic ruin. It now attracts visitors as a modern tourist attraction.References:
The Petersberg Citadel is one of the largest extant early-modern citadels in Europe and covers the whole north-western part of the Erfurt city centre. It was built after 1665 on Petersberg hill and was in military use until 1963. It dates from a time when Erfurt was ruled by the Electors of Mainz and is a unique example of the European style of fortress construction. Beneath the citadel is an underground maze of passageways that can be visited on guided tours organised by Erfurt Tourist Office.
The citadel was originally built on the site of a medieval Benedictine Monastery and the earliest parts of the complex date from the 12th century. Erfurt has also been ruled by Sweden, Prussia, Napoleon, the German Empire, the Nazis, and post-World War II Soviet occupying forces, and it was part of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany). All of these regimes used Petersberg Citadel and had an influence on its development. The baroque fortress was in military use until 1963. Since German reunification in 1990, the citadel has undergone significant restoration and it is now open to the public as a historic site.