Thursday, August 16, 2012

Thursday, August 16th, Conwy


The first 22 photos in today's linked Picasa album below are from a visit downtown last night, and some evening castle views.  I'd already finished the blog, and didn't download the shots from my camera until tonight.

Today's journey took us to the three main castles (Conwy, Beaumaris, and Caernarfon) in this area, part of a defensive ring built by Edward I to assure England's control over a huge forest and agricultural treasure in Northern Wales.  Kids are out of school, and it was fun to see them exploring the passageways and towers as if they were Robin Hood's archers or King Arthur's Knights.

Okay, I'll admit it.  He built some very good castles.  His Crusade days brought him into contact with some of the world's best architecture in France, Spain, Italy, and the Middle East.  He was able to incorporate much of what he saw into these castles, and the walls which surrounded the neighboring towns.  His placement of them to make best use of the rivers, rock outcroppings, and strategic locations is amazing.  He also pioneered more efficient arrow slits and murder holes, and made it possible for fewer soldiers to defend the castles.  We were really impressed with what we saw today.

The last castle, Caernarfon, was where Edward named his son, Edward II the first Prince of Wales.  In 1911 and in 1969, it served as the site of the investiture of more recent Princes of Wales.  It is presumed it will host William's ceremony if Prince Phillip becomes King.

Tomorrow, we drive a long day's drive to Keswick, in the northern Lake District, where we'll spend the next four day making day trips to find cemeteries with Fearons.

Here is a link to the photos taken today: Thursday, August 16th, Conwy.


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