Topic: Military history/Fortifications
A bastion fort or trace italienne (a phrase improperly derived from French, literally meaning Italian outline), is a fortification in a style that evolved during the early modern period of gunpowder when the cannon came to dominate the battlefield. It was first seen in the mid-15th century in Italy. Some types, especially when combined with ravelins and other outworks, resembled the related star fort of the same era.
The design of the fort is normally a polygon with bastions at the corners of the walls. These outcroppings eliminated protected blind spots, called "dead zones", and allowed fire along the curtain from positions protected from direct fire. Many bastion forts also feature cavaliers, which are raised secondary structures based entirely inside the primary structure.
Kowloon Walled City was an ungoverned, densely populated settlement in Kowloon City, Hong Kong. Originally a Chinese military fort, the Walled City became an enclave after the New Territories were leased to the UK by China in 1898. Its population increased dramatically following the Japanese occupation of Hong Kong during World War II. By 1990, the walled city contained 50,000 residents within its 2.6-hectare (6.4-acre) borders. From the 1950s to the 1970s, it was controlled by local triads and had high rates of prostitution, gambling, and drug abuse.
In January 1987, the Hong Kong municipal government announced plans to demolish the walled city. After an arduous eviction process, demolition began in March 1993 and was completed in April 1994. Kowloon Walled City Park opened in December 1995 and occupies the area of the former Walled City. Some historical artefacts from the walled city, including its yamen building and remnants of its southern gate, have been preserved there.
- "Kowloon Walled City" | 2017-12-21 | 90 Upvotes 25 Comments
Guédelon Castle (Château de Guédelon) is a castle currently under construction near Treigny, France. The castle is the focus of an experimental archaeology project aimed at recreating a 13th-century castle and its environment using period technique, dress, and material.
In order to fully investigate the technology required in the past, the project is using only period construction techniques, tools, and costumes. Materials, including wood and stone, are all obtained locally. Jacques Moulin, chief architect for the project, designed the castle according to the architectural model developed during the 12th and 13th centuries by Philip II of France.
Construction started in 1997 under Michel Guyot, owner of Château de Saint-Fargeau, a castle in Saint-Fargeau 13 kilometres away. The site was chosen according to the availability of construction materials: an abandoned stone quarry, in a large forest, with a nearby pond. The site is in a rural woodland area and the nearest town is Saint-Sauveur-en-Puisaye, about 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) to the northeast.
- "Guédelon Castle" | 2020-04-11 | 202 Upvotes 40 Comments
Air raid shelters, also known as bomb shelters, are structures for the protection of non-combatants as well as combatants against enemy attacks from the air. They are similar to bunkers in many regards, although they are not designed to defend against ground attack (but many have been used as defensive structures in such situations).
Prior to World War II, in May 1924, an Air Raid Precautions Committee was set up in the United Kingdom. For years, little progress was made with shelters because of the apparently irreconcilable conflict between the need to send the public underground for shelter and the need to keep them above ground for protection against gas attacks. In February 1936 the Home Secretary appointed a technical Committee on Structural Precautions against Air Attack.
By November 1937, there had only been slow progress, because of a serious lack of data on which to base any design recommendations and the Committee proposed that the Home Office should have its own department for research into structural precautions, rather than relying on research work done by the Bombing Test Committee to support the development of bomb design and strategy. This proposal was eventually implemented in January 1939.
During the Munich crisis, local authorities dug trenches to provide shelter. After the crisis, the British Government decided to make these a permanent feature, with a standard design of precast concrete trench lining. Unfortunately these turned out to perform very poorly. They also decided to issue free to poorer households the Anderson shelter, and to provide steel props to create shelters in suitable basements.
The Trundle is an Iron Age hillfort on St Roche's Hill about 4 miles (6 km) north of Chichester, Sussex, England, built on the site of a causewayed enclosure, a form of early Neolithic earthwork found in northwestern Europe. Causewayed enclosures were built in England from shortly before 3700 BC until about 3300 BC; they are characterized by the full or partial enclosure of an area with ditches that are interrupted by gaps, or causeways. Their purpose is not known; they may have been settlements, meeting places, or ritual sites. Hillforts were built as early as 1000 BC, in the Late Bronze Age, and continued to be built through the Iron Age until shortly before the Roman occupation. A chapel dedicated to St Roche was built on the hill around the end of the 14th century; it was in ruins by 1570. A windmill and a beacon were subsequently built on the hill. The site was occasionally used as a meeting place in the post-medieval period.
The hillfort is still a substantial earthwork, but the Neolithic site was unknown until 1925 when archaeologist O.G.S. Crawford obtained an aerial photograph of the Trundle, clearly showing additional structures inside the ramparts of the hillfort. Causewayed enclosures were new to archaeology at the time, with only five known by 1930, and the photograph persuaded archaeologist E. Cecil Curwen to excavate the site in 1928 and 1930. These early digs established a construction date of about 500 BC to 100 BC for the hillfort and proved the existence of the Neolithic site. In 2011, the Gathering Time project published an analysis of radiocarbon dates from almost forty British causewayed enclosures, including some from the Trundle. The conclusion was that the Neolithic part of the site was probably constructed no earlier than the mid-fourth millennium BC. A review of the site in 1995 by Alastair Oswald noted the presence of fifteen possible Iron Age house platforms within the hillfort's ramparts.
- "The Trundle" | 2022-01-16 | 35 Upvotes 6 Comments