Roscrea Castle, County Tipperary

Roscrea Castle, County Tipperary

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By command of King John of England, the Round Castle was built in 1213. Originally this structure consisted of a wooden motte and bailey fortification, but this was later rebuilt in stone in 1281 resulting in the castle which we now see today. Although from the outside the tower appears round, the interior is in fact octagonal in shape. It measures roughly 10.7 m (35 ft) with three floors and the walls are roughly 1.8 m (6 ft. 11 inches) in thickness. This tower stood at the edge of Lake Cré, which has since been drained.

The Square Castle, along with its two sentry towers and curtain wall was not built until 1281 and its structure makeup consists of hard sandstone. The gate tower is over 27.4 m (90 ft) and its walls are roughly 2.4 m (8 ft) at their thickest. The entrance is clearly seen from the Castle Street as a pointed arch, through which you pass into the centre courtyard. The draw-bridge of the castle originally would have stretched across the breath of the modern street. The castle remained in the Butler family until 1703 when it was sold to the King’s Hospital in Kilmainham, but was soon sold again to John Damer in 1722.

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