Medieval fortress, Medina del Campo, Valladolid (Spain)
The first medieval city centre of Medina del Campo was founded around the 11th century on the hill (mota in Spanish), where nowadays is the castle. The repopulation of the town and the trade activity made the inhabitants move closer to the river to establish themselves and leave the fortified hill. King Juan II of Castile, his children king Enrique IV and queen Isabella “the Catholic” and her husband Fernando “the Catholic” built the Castle of La Mota in the 15th century.
It´s one of the biggest castles in Castile. It was used as fortress and was at one time a strategic military centre. The keep (the largest tower of the castle) contained part of the archives of the crown during the reigns of Enrique IV and Juana I and also it was used as a prison of the state, where Cesare Borgia and Hernando Pizarro were imprisoned.
The castle has a trapezoid floor plan. It’s made up of two great walls – one outside (barbican, full of underground shooting galleries) and one inside- and a wide parade ground. The coat of arms of the Catholic Monarchs of the year 1483 is visible above the arch of the main gate. The keep is 130ft high (more than 40m). The chapel of Santa Maria del Castillo is on the ground floor. Inside, there are interesting works of art such as the Hispano-Flemish triptych and a beautiful ivory crucifix of the 17th century. A large-scale copy of a map of 1500, by Juan de la Cosa, can be seen in another room.
Some important renovation and reconstruction works were done during the first half of the 20th century to make the castle look like new. In 1942, during Franco´s dictatorship, it was used as a training school for the Feminine Section and since 1984 it has been under the control of the Autonomous Community of Castilla y León (the regional government).
For more information visit the website of Castle of La Mota http://www.castillodelamota.es/
The medieval fortress in Medina del Campo, Valladolid (España)