Huxter Fort is an iron age fortification on the island of Whalsay. It is on an islet in the Loch of Huxter, connected to the shore by a causeway. The fort was probably built around 300 BC, the generally accepted date of most similar fortifications in the region. This ring fort and blockhouse existed before the other two forts in Whalsay, brochs that were built just before the Christian era started. Huxter was standing until the 19th century. When described in 1879, the fort was much less dilapidated than today.
Entry to the fort enclosure was across the causeway, then through a passageway with rooms on either side and with a doorway in the center. The entrance section is part of the main wall. This is similar to the blockhouse at Clickhimin. The passage is just 0.76 m wide at its opening, and 1.1 m at its inner end. It has been conjectured that there may have been a two-story timber building built against the inner face of the fort. There is little structural evidence for this today. However, early accounts of the fort indicate that this may have been the case, and other forts show traces of what may have been internal stairways.
A ring wall runs around the islet, with a two-room blockhouse forming the defense opposite the causeway. The ring wall seems to have been built separately from the main structure. The blockhouse forms part of the ringwork, but is not bonded into the ring wall. The weaknesses in the defense of this and related structures could be explained by additional defenses of wood and thorn branches that have disappeared without leaving any trace. Another possibility is that the defenses were mainly symbolic, and perhaps played a part in warfare that was conducted according to formal rituals.References:
Angelokastro is a Byzantine castle on the island of Corfu. It is located at the top of the highest peak of the island"s shoreline in the northwest coast near Palaiokastritsa and built on particularly precipitous and rocky terrain. It stands 305 m on a steep cliff above the sea and surveys the City of Corfu and the mountains of mainland Greece to the southeast and a wide area of Corfu toward the northeast and northwest.
Angelokastro is one of the most important fortified complexes of Corfu. It was an acropolis which surveyed the region all the way to the southern Adriatic and presented a formidable strategic vantage point to the occupant of the castle.
Angelokastro formed a defensive triangle with the castles of Gardiki and Kassiopi, which covered Corfu"s defences to the south, northwest and northeast.
The castle never fell, despite frequent sieges and attempts at conquering it through the centuries, and played a decisive role in defending the island against pirate incursions and during three sieges of Corfu by the Ottomans, significantly contributing to their defeat.
During invasions it helped shelter the local peasant population. The villagers also fought against the invaders playing an active role in the defence of the castle.
The exact period of the building of the castle is not known, but it has often been attributed to the reigns of Michael I Komnenos and his son Michael II Komnenos. The first documentary evidence for the fortress dates to 1272, when Giordano di San Felice took possession of it for Charles of Anjou, who had seized Corfu from Manfred, King of Sicily in 1267.
From 1387 to the end of the 16th century, Angelokastro was the official capital of Corfu and the seat of the Provveditore Generale del Levante, governor of the Ionian islands and commander of the Venetian fleet, which was stationed in Corfu.
The governor of the castle (the castellan) was normally appointed by the City council of Corfu and was chosen amongst the noblemen of the island.
Angelokastro is considered one of the most imposing architectural remains in the Ionian Islands.