Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / The art and architecture of the crusader states
V: The Arts in Cyprus, pp. 165-207 PDF (15.7 MB)
Ch. V CYPRUS: MILITARY ARCHITECTURE 203 projecting brattice which covered the entrance in its east wall. In its final Frankish form the castle is thus seen to conform with the principle of concentric planning so far as circumstances permitted; the outer ward was ample only on the west, cut up by the Byzantine towers on the south, and on the north and east reduced at least in part to the dimensions of fighting galleries isolated from the domestic accommodation within them. Within these strong defenses, which in 1374 withstood all efforts of the Genoese to penetrate them, was the royal residence, used by queen Eleanor during the siege and by James I, who as constable had defended the castle, after his return from captivity in Genoa. Something of these royal apartments remains in the upper part of the west range, which to the south of the gatehouse backs onto the original Byzantine curtain and which would have been screened by the outer west wall. The chapel was in the third story of the gatehouse, lit by large windows opening on the barbican, and there were other chambers to the south communicating with it, but also reached and bypassed by a stone gallery corbeled onto the inner wall. Access to the stairs by which the gallery was reached from the yard was controlled by a gate leading to an alley between the northern section of the west range, constructed within the Byzantine wall, and the domestic quarters which occupied the northern part of the yard but of which only the foundations remain. South of the gatehouse in the west range survives an undercroft of three cross-vaulted bays, itself raised on basement vaults entered from both the courtyard and the barbican. In the floor of these basements are two shafts opening out below the neck into the virgin rock, perhaps the "grotte oscurissime et horrende" where the supporters of the usurper Amalric were thrown in 1315 to starve to death.9 The damage sustained in the siege of 1374 was evidently made good by local repairs which did not affect the layout of the castle. Nor is there any evidence of new works after the castle was surrendered to James II, who in 1460 had attacked this last stronghold of Charlotte and Louis with artillery. It remained for the Venetians to attend to the modernization of the fortress. The treaty assigning Famagusta to the Genoese introduced the new feature of a land frontier, to defend which James I built the castle of Sigouri in 1391, a typical castle of the plain, rectangular with square towers at the angles and a ditch filled seasonally from 9. F. Bustron, Chronique de l'Ile de Chypre, ed. R. de Mas Latrie (Collection de documents inédits, Mélanges historiques, 5; Paris, 1886), p. 245.
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