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Castle to Fortress (Kindle)

Medieval to Post-Modern Fortifications in the Lands of the Former Roman Empire

Medieval History Weaponry Military

By J.E. Kaufmann, H.W. Kaufmann
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
File Size: 94.8 MB (.mobi)
Pages: 248
Illustrations: 80
ISBN: 9781526736895
eBook Released: 20th June 2019

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Across western Europe the long tradition of castle-building took on its most sophisticated form in the later medieval period and then, in response to the development of gunpowder weapons, it underwent a fundamental change – from castle to fortress. This, the second volume of a highly illustrated new study of medieval fortification, gives a fascinating insight into the last great age of castles and the centuries of violence and conflict they were part of.

It traces the advances made between the twelfth and the fifteenth centuries, looking in particular at the form these fortifications took in contexts as different as Italy, Wales, France and the Iberian peninsula. Many would regard this period in the history of castles as the classic age. It was followed by a phase of relative decline as the conditions of warfare changed and castles had to be adapted to cope with cannon. The conventional castle gave way to new styles of fortification. But, as the authors demonstrate, they were still essential factors in military calculations and campaigns – they were of direct strategic and tactical importance wherever there was an attempt to take or hold territory.

Magnificent must-see continuation of his previous work "Castrum to Castle. Classical to Medieval Fortifications in the Lands of the Western Roman Empire." A subject of great historical interest.

Read the full Spanish review here

Miniaturas JM

This book traces the evolution of castles and fortified sites during the later Middle Ages, covering the period from 12th to 15th centuries. Authors of this wonderfully detailed and richly illustrated book take you on a journey through medieval England, France, Italy, Wales, Iberia and the Low Countries, discussing key examples of fortifications that shaped military thinking of the day. What's great about this book is that it's not only about the medieval fortifications themselves but also about the turbulent world of their time.
I discovered many beautiful castles throughout reading this book and I'm going to put them on my "to visit" list. I initially thought I won't be as interested in this book as I'm in others about the medieval period, but I couldn't put it down. Highly recommended.

GoodReads, ConstantReader

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Fortress Study Group, September 2019

It is a book that I recommend for those who want to know the history and evolution of defensive architecture at the turn of the late Middle Ages and the beginning of the Renaissance.

Read the full Italian review here

Old Barbed Wire Blog

Another of the Kaufmann series of interesting books with lots of detail.

This, the second volume of a highly illustrated new study of medieval fortification, gives a fascinating insight into the last great age of castles and the centuries of violence and conflict they were part of.

Pillbox Study Group

The Kaufmanns examine the transition from vast medieval family homes to places of safety and security in a fascinating treatise on the way such buildings were modified to provide protection from growing threats.

Books Monthly

This book follows on from its predecessor ‘Castrum to Castle’ by tracing the development of fortifications in the late medieval period through the radical rethink demanded by the increasing effectiveness of gunpowder weaponry. Designs of fortifications change to reflect the physics and power of cannon, delivering defences that looked quite different. The authors have clearly expended large amounts of time in presenting each castle/fortress with exceptional maps and photographs that give context, coupled with the relevant history. A good read and a good reference book.

Michael McCarthy. Battlefield Guide

Michael McCarthy

About J.E. Kaufmann

J.E. Kaufmann is a retired teacher and presently an adjunct professor at Palo Alto Jr. College and H.W. Kaufmann, PhD, is a retired professor, and they live in the United States. Their most recent books on fortifications are The Maginot Line, The Atlantic Wall, The Forts and Fortifications of Europe 1815-1945: The Central States and The Forts and Fortifications of Europe 1815-1945: The Neutral States.


About H.W. Kaufmann

J.E. Kaufmann is a retired teacher and presently an adjunct professor at Palo Alto Jr. College and H.W. Kaufmann, PhD, is a retired professor, and they live in the United States. Their most recent books on fortifications are The Maginot Line, The Atlantic Wall, The Forts and Fortifications of Europe 1815-1945: The Central States and The Forts and Fortifications of Europe 1815-1945: The Neutral States.

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