Barletta Castle was initially erected in the 10th century by the Normans as a typical motte and bailey structure. During the Crusade period, it was a used as a hostel for soldiers leaving for the Holy Land. It was upgraded and enlarged substantially under the reign of Frederick II between 1225 and 1228. This corresponds to the period in which he launched a crusade from here, the Sixth Crusade.
The castle was later expanded under the House of Anjou, when Barletta became an important centre of Aragonese-Spanish control in the area, in 1527. Charles had the building expanded again and the four massive bastions added to create the present fortress form. In 1915 the fortress, then in use as a barracks and military store, was bombarded by the Austro-Hungarian scout cruiser SMS Helgoland. In September 1943 it was the setting of an Italian military defence unit against a German army.
To enter the castle you cross a stone bridge leading to the entrance. Through the doorway, then, you have access to different areas, such as the square courtyard, the ancient seat of the guard and the chapel in which the castle were buried. From the courtyard, you can hop on to various scales, with which you can reach the top floor or the stands.References:
The Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere is one of the oldest churches of Rome. The basic floor plan and wall structure of the church date back to the 340s, and much of the structure to 1140-43. The first sanctuary was built in 221 and 227 by Pope Callixtus I and later completed by Pope Julius I.
The inscription on the episcopal throne states that this is the first church in Rome dedicated to Mary, mother of Jesus, although some claim that privilege belongs to the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. A Christian house-church was founded here about 220 by Pope Saint Callixtus I (217-222) on the site of the Taberna meritoria, a refuge for retired soldiers. The area was made available for Christian use by Emperor Alexander Severus when he settled a dispute between the Christians and tavern-keepers.
The church underwent two restorations in the fifth and eighth centuries and in 1140-43 it was re-erected on its old foundations under Pope Innocent II.