Hilltop castle

A summit is a castle built on a mountain top mountain castle. The advantages of this strategically chosen position existed at one in the inaccessibility. About the steep mountain flanks attacks were difficult to the castle, depending on the terrain even impossible. On the other hand you could also prevent the shelling of the castle inside when the castle was on the highest point in the area. Also, the representative value of the castle was lifted by the particular situation.

However arose for summit castles supply technical difficulties: lack of sufficiently strong pump was a water supply problem, if no source was near. The transportation of food, livestock and other goods was complicated by the location. The adverse weather conditions on mountain tops aggravated the castle life in addition.

Another problem arose from the remoteness of the castles. The disengagement of armed foot soldiers has been hampered by the terrain, even more of the riders. The control of the surrounding areas was therefore possible only insufficiently.

The Cathars used a number of inaccessible summit castles as places of refuge, such as Montsegur Castle, which is located on the top of a steep rock dome.

Like other hill forts lost top castles during the Middle Ages in importance. The rise of cities as centers of business and politics diminishes the value of these castles for trade and dominion.