The walls loomed above me, yet still getting taller as I got closer. Surrounding its feet sat an empty moat, now covered in green.
At the entrance a large round fountain danced in delight as it welcomed visitors coming to the castle to glimpse a life and style of many a bygone era.
Castello Sforzesco fell in French, Spanish and Austrian hands and each contributed somewhat to its design. The Spanish added outer walls in a star shaped form that gave the most security and also provided an area for livestock. Ingenious...another good use for cow crap.
All that is left today is the square inner shape.
No. 1 --Piazza d'Armi. Entrance view from the street.
The Filarete Tower from inside, standing in the Piazza d'Armi, an open space.
I love this story!
No. 2: Rochetta. Although the castle was used mostly for military purposes, it was at one time lavishly decorated with ball rooms and game courts. The Rochetta was transformed into party central.
Entering the Rochetta...
No. 3: The Corte Ducale held the luxury apartments. The U-shaped design allowed the intricately designed windows to look out upon a green garden courtyard.
No. 4: The Bona Tower: Another bid for security is buried in the history of the Bona Tower. It is named after the widow of Galeazzo Maria Sforza, who was murdered in front of the St. Stephen's Church. In order to be able to see all the goings-on around her, the widow had this tower built.
At the back of the Castle, the towers were square in shape...two round in front, two square at the rear.
On the round tower in front, the Sforza coat of arms was built into the side.
Countries defend themselves in times of war, against invasion and sometimes against themselves. Individuals, especially in this day and age, defend themselves and search for ways to be more secure. Our homes have alarms to keep us safe. We build up our own personal defenses to keep off unwanted company or attention, or even to cope with society and/or life.
I can think of many ways in my life where I've either built walls, or burned bridges, to "protect" myself. I know that many people do the same thing but my security has always been short-lived.
I came to Castle Sforzesco with the idea of seeing another culture, the Celtic Festival, and was pleased to also view the Castle. I thought I'd learn a little about the history and life of the people who walked the courtyards, danced the halls and died un-natural deaths.
Instead, these walls made me think how futile it is to build up material defenses. So many times what was built up bigger and better than before was torn, blown (or struck down).
I have a belief that there is Someone who gives me an assurance that walls like these will never give me. We all need something to believe it, something that makes us strong when times are hard. Do you have an anchor, a foundation that will hold you up?
Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me.