Ruins of Paikuli Tower

Ruins of Paikuli Tower

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The tower lies on a hill near Barkal, a modern village south-west of Lake Darband-i-Khan, Sulaimaniya Governorate, Iraq. It was set up as a monument commemorating the victory of the Sassanian king Narseh over his nephew Warham III. The inscriptions were written in Parthian and middle Persian languages. The western wall was written in middle Persian and consisted of 46 lines and 8 horizontal stone blocks. The western side was the Parthian version and composed of 7 horizontal stone blocks forming 42 lines of inscription. These inscribed stone blocks are now in the Sulaimaniya Museum.

According to Humbach-Skjaervø, the total number of the blocks is 230-240 and the total length of the text is 940 cm; this makes it the longest surviving Sassanian inscription to date. 293 CE.

Iniarv's Tower was a square keep that sat upon an escarpment overlooking the High Road. The walls of the keep were five foot thick stone and approximately eighty feet to a side. Two twenty-foot square, thirty-foot high stone towers stood on the northern and southern corners of the square. A thirty-foot high gatehouse with portcullises and murder holes stood at the western corner of the square. The three towers were connected by a walkway with parapets that could be reached by sets of steps from the inner courtyard. Γ]

The inner courtyard, or ward, was hard-packed earth and had two small wooden building against the outer walls. One building was a smithy and the other was a stables. Doors off of the ward led into the corner towers as well as the building's main tower. Γ]

The main tower sat on the eastern corner of the square and was fifty feet square and over seventy feet high. The ground level had a stone floor. The interior was divided into several levels by wooden floors and had a wooden roof with parapets as well. The views from the upper levels of the Sword Mountains, the Mere of Dead Men, and the High Road were said to be stunning. Stairs connected each level as well as leading down into the cellars and crypts below. Γ]

The structure had been repaired and rebuilt many times over the centuries using varying styles and degrees of care, but the tower always seemed to fall back into ruin. Many attributed this to a curse upon the building bestowed by Iniarv himself. By 1372 DR much of the structure was back in ruins. Parts of the outer wall had been breached, the interior of one of the small corner towers had collapsed, the courtyard buildings were in ruins, the stairs down to the crypts were blocked with rubble, and the interior floors and roof of the main tower had largely collapsed. Γ]

Enemy Data

Enemy Data: Tower of Ruins
Image Name - Game
Statistics Items Location
Zombie   [alt] [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 15
Drop: x2, usually 100 Gold
Forest, Villa, Castle Center, Tower of Ruins
Hell Knight [Silver, Long Sword]  (Armor)  [alt] [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 40
Drop: Usually Gold, Red Jewel, or PowerUp Frequently Knife
Castle Center (inert), Art Tower (inert), Tower of Ruins, Duel Tower
Hell Knight [Gold, Long Sword]  (Armor)  [alt] [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 60
Drop: Usually Gold, Red Jewel, or PowerUp Frequently Knife
Villa (inert), Castle Center (inert), Art Tower (always drops Sun Card or Moon Card), Tower of Ruins
Hell Knight [Copper, Pike]  (Armor)  [alt] [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 50
Drop: Usually Red Jewel, Gold, or PowerUp Frequently Attack Item
Castle Center, Tower of Ruins
Ghoul  (Flea Man) [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 5
Forest, Castle Center, Tower of Ruins, Tower of Science, Clock Tower
Skeleton Warrior [Running]   [alt] [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 10 (day), 12 (night)
Drop: usually Red Jewel, Gold, or PowerUp frequently Knife
Foggy Lake, Forest, Castle Wall, Villa, Outer Wall, Underground Waterway, Tower of Ruins
Ghost [Servant]  [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 1
Drop: Usually Gold, Red Jewel, or PowerUp
Castle Center (Carrie Only), Tower of Ruins
Ghost [Leader]  [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 1
Drop: Usually Red Jewel, Gold, or PowerUp always drops
Castle Center (Carrie Only), Tower of Ruins
Floating Skull  [ edit ]
Legacy of Darkness
' HP: 1
Drop: Usually PowerUp, Red Jewel, or Gold Frequently Attack Item
Foggy Lake, Forest, Villa, Tunnel


The name of Narseh stems from the Old Iranian theophoric name of *naryasa(n)ha-, meaning "men’s praise". Narseh's name is listed as nrshy in Middle Persian and nryshw in Parthian on the Paikuli inscription and Naqsh-e Rostam. [3] The Greek version of his name is also listed in the inscriptions, as Narsaiēs or Narsaios. However, other Greek sources generally spell his name as Narsēs. [3] The name of Narseh is known in other languages as Latin: Narseus Syriac ܢܪܣܝ Nrsy Arabic: نرسي ‎ Narsi Armenian Nerseh Coptic Narsaph, as well as Narseos. [3]

Narseh seems to have been the youngest son of Shapur I, being born between 228-233 during the reign of his grandfather Ardashir I ( r . 224–242 ). [3] Narseh is quoted in an inscription by his father Shapur I as the governor of the eastern Sasanian provinces of Hind, Sakastan and Turan. During his term as governor, he reportedly played an important role in the affairs of the eastern portion of the empire. [3] Shapur I died in 270, and was succeeded by Hormizd I, whose rule only lasted one year due to death. Narseh's older brother Bahram I, who was never considered a candidate for succession of the throne by their father, probably due to having a mother of lowly origin, ascended the throne with the aid of the powerful Zoroastrian priest Kartir. [4]

He then made a settlement with Narseh to give up his entitlement to the throne in return for the governorship of the important frontier province of Armenia, which was constantly the source of war between the Roman and Sasanian Empires. [3] Narseh held the title of Vazurg Šāh Arminān ("Great King of Armenia"), which was used by the heir to the throne. [5] Nevertheless, Narseh still most likely viewed Bahram I as a usurper. [4] Bahram I's reign however, lasted shortly, ending on September 274 with his death. [4] His son Bahram II succeeded him as shah, seemingly without any issues he may have been aided by Kartir to ascend the throne over Narseh. [6] [7] [8] This most likely frustrated Narseh, who had now been neglected from succession several times. [5]

Following the death of Bahram II in 293, his son Bahram III was unwillingly proclaimed shah in Pars by a group of nobles led by Wahnam and supported by Adurfarrobay, governor of Meshan. [9] However, Bahram III was considered a weak ruler by the other nobles, who decided to pledge allegiance to Narseh, the last remaining son of Shapur, and someone who was perceived as being a stronger leader and one who would be able to bring glory to Iran. [10] [11] Four months into Bahram III's reign, Narseh was summoned to Mesopotamia at the request of many members of the Iranian nobility. He met them in the passage of Paikuli in the province of Garmekan, where he was firmly approved and likely also declared shah for the first time. The reasons behind the nobles favour of Narseh might have been due to his jurisdiction as governor, his image as an advocate of the Zoroastrian religion and as an insurer for harmony and prosperity of the empire. His ancestry from the early Sasanian family probably also played a role. [3]

In order to avoid bloodshed, Narseh proposed to make peace with both Bahram III and Wahnam. [3] Both seem to have agreed, as no accounts of battles have been made. The reason behind Bahram III and Wahnam's quick agreement to peace may have been due to desertion amongst many of Bahram III's men. Bahram III abdicated as shah and was probably spared, whilst Wahnam was executed when Narseh entered the Sasanian capital of Ctesiphon. [12] [3] Narseh then summoned the aristocrats to take part in the royal referendum, a ritual which had been used since the first Sasanian shah, Ardashir I ( r . 224–242 ), and which Narseh now made use of in order to gain the approval of the aristocracy as a legitimate ruler instead that of a usurper. Narseh was decisively voted in favour by the majority, and guaranteed "to enter the throne of our father and our forefathers with the help of the Gods, in their name and that of our forefathers." [3] Amongst those nobles who supported Narseh was the leading priest Kartir, which is attested in the Paikuli inscription. [8]

War with the Romans Edit

Background Edit

When Narseh ascended the throne, the eastern portion of Mesopotamia (since 244) and all of Armenia (since 252) were under Iranian rule. [3] The traditional notion of the western part of Armenia had been given to the Arsacid prince Tiridates III has been questioned. [3] According to historian Ursula Weber, "It is quite certain" that the whole of Armenia continued to be a part of the Sasanian Empire in the 3rd century, until it was later ceded to the Romans in 298/9 after the Peace of Nisibis. [3] The proposition of Narseh presumably following Shapur I's expansionistic approach does not match with his testimony in the Paikuli inscription "And Caesar and the Romans were in gratitude (?) and peace and friendship with us." [3] Contrary to the testimony, however, the two empires soon clashed with each other−in 296. [3] From a Roman viewpoint, the mutual relations with Iran had been heavily strained due to the aggressive and expansionistic approach of Ardashir I and Shapur I. [3] However, the conclusive causes for the Roman offensive was possibly due to their territorial losses and the disadvantageous change in the sphere of authority and influence in the Mesopotamian-Armenian lands in the 240s and 250s. [3]

The war Edit

Galerius, Caesar under Emperor Diocletian, invaded Mesopotamia, which Narseh had occupied hoping to check his advance. Three battles were fought subsequently, the first two of which were indecisive. In the third fought at Callinicum, Galerius suffered a complete defeat and was forced to retreat. Galerius crossed the Euphrates into Syria to join his father-in-law Diocletian at Antioch. On his arrival at Antioch, Galerius was rebuked by Diocletian who disgraced him for his shameful defeat at the hands of Narseh. Vowing to take revenge, Galerius made preparations throughout the winter of 297 and invaded Armenia with 25,000 men.

Supported by the Armenians, Galerius surprised Narseh in his camp at the Battle of Satala and inflicted a crushing defeat on the latter, forcing him to flee in haste. His wife, prisoners, his sisters and a number of his children were captured apart from his prodigious military chest. Eastern Mesopotamia was recovered by the Romans and Tiridates was reinstated as the monarch of Armenia.

Peace negotiations Edit

Anxious to make peace with the Romans, Narseh dispatched his envoy Aphraban to Galerius with the following message:

"The whole human race knows that the Roman and Persian kingdoms resemble two great luminaries, and that, like a man's two eyes, they ought mutually to adorn and illustrate each other, and not in the extremity of their wrath to seek rather each other's destruction. So to act is not to act manfully, but is indicative rather of levity and weakness for it is to suppose that our inferiors can never be of any service to us, and that therefore we had better get rid of them. Narseh, moreover, ought not to be accounted a weaker prince than other Persian kings thou hast indeed conquered him, but then thou surpassest all other monarchs and thus Narseh has of course been worsted by thee, though he is no whit inferior in merit to the best of his ancestors. The orders which my master has given me are to entrust all the rights of Persia to the clemency of Rome and I therefore do not even bring with me any conditions of peace, since it is for the emperor to determine everything. I have only to pray, on my master's behalf, for the restoration of his wives and male children if he receives them at your hands, he will be forever beholden to you, and will be better pleased than if he recovered them by force of arms. Even now my master cannot sufficiently thank you for the kind treatment which he hears you have vouchsafed them, in that you have offered them no insult, but have behaved towards them as though on the point of giving them back to their kith and kin. He sees herein that you bear in mind the changes of fortune and the instability of all human affairs."

But Galerius dismissed Aphraban without giving any definite answer, at the same time accusing the Iranians of ill-treating Valerian. In the meantime, he consulted Diocletian at Nisibis, and he persuaded Galerius to offer terms of peace to the Iranians. Accordingly, terms of peace were agreed upon, and were ratified by a treaty concluded by Narseh with the Romans.

  • Five provinces beyond the Tigris were to be ceded to the Romans. One writer gives these provinces as Ingilene, Sophene, Arzanene, Corduene, and Zabdicene by another as Arzanene, Moxoene, Zabdicene, Rehimene, and Corduene.
  • The semi-independent kingdom of Armenia was to be extended up to the fortress of Zintha, in Media.
  • Iran was expected to relinquish all her rights over Iberia.
  • Formal dealings between Iran and Rome would henceforth be conducted at Nisibis.

Narseh did not survive for long after the conclusion of this humiliating treaty. He died in 303 and was succeeded by his son, Hormizd II.

The title of Narseh on his coins was the typical Mazdēsn bay Narsē šāhān šāh Ērān ud Anērān kēčihr az yazdān ("the Mazda-worshiping, divine Narseh, King of Kings of Iran(ians) and non-Iran(ians), whose image/brilliance is from the gods"). [13] [14] The iconography of Narseh's coins can be categorized into three phases. The first and second phases portray him wearing a palmette crown, albeit with two different hairstyles. In the third phase, he is wearing a lamellar crown along with a different hairstyle. [3]

Frowning Ruins: The Tower Houses of Medieval Ireland

Bourchiers’ Castle, Lough Gur, County Limerick,
an elegant fifteenth century Irish Gothic tower house.

A tower house is a fortified medieval residence of stone, usually four or more stories in height. Like most of the surviving monuments of our medieval past, the majority of Irish tower houses are in poor condition, with collapsed walls and ivy shrouded exteriors reflecting centuries of neglect. Yet these ruins, the remnants of a major medieval building industry, provide a valuable source of information on life in Ireland during the later Middle Ages. An increasing number are being restored through both private and state initiatives, while there has also been a marked upsurge in academic interest in recent years.
The buildings were regarded as castles by their occupants. This classification continues today and tower houses are regarded as a species within the castle genus. Their evident defensive strength should not, however, overshadow their residential nature, for tower houses were primarily the defended homes of a wealthy landowning class and were erected by both Anglo-Irish and Gaelic families during the period from circa 1400 to circa 1650.
The identification of the tower house as a distinct unit of study among the castellated architecture of Ireland is of relatively modern origin. In 1858 the English antiquarian John Henry Parker made a fortnight’s tour of southern Ireland. Among the numerous historic monuments he visited he recognised a distinct class of free standing, castellated towers with similar architectural features, the tower house. Parker’s appellation, however, does not seem to have been readily adopted by contemporary Irish antiquarians. Thomas J. Westropp, for example, preferred to use the term peel tower, a name derived from a broadly similar medieval building series found in Scotland and northern England. The term tower house only gained greater acceptance from the 1930s onwards, largely due to the work of Harold G. Leask.

John Mulvany’s painting of Kilmallock, County Limerick c.1800. (Courtesy of The National Gallery of Ireland)

Dating, origins and distribution

Ireland at the close of the Middle Ages was heavily populated with castles according to an English document of 1515 there were no less than 500 piles or castles throughout the country. Even today the exact number of castles and tower houses is by no means certain, and there are numerous ‘lost’ castles. Westropp’s comprehensive survey of County Limerick was based on information retrieved from historical documents and it identified a corpus of 405 buildings. Today the location of only 176 can be identified with certainty. Leask came up with a figure of around 2,900 castles throughout Ireland, the majority of which were undoubtedly tower houses (Fig.1).
Tower houses came into existence by the early fifteenth century, when a 1429 statute allowed the counties of the Pale to grant £10 to landowners towards their construction. The tower house at Kilclief, County Down was erected in the early fifteenth century. Where did the concept originate? They may have been scaled-down copies of earlier Anglo-Norman keeps. They may have developed as the secular equivalent of the belfry towers raised at Irish abbeys and monasteries during the fifteenth century. The concept may have been imported from England, Scotland or the Continent. Married to any discussion on origins, however, is the need to identify the reasons why tower houses became prominent in late medieval society
In a history of County Limerick published in 1826-7, the antiquarian P.J. Fitzgerald recorded that ‘the frowning ruins of many [castles] still remain as the solitary monuments of a long and gloomy period of distraction and anarchy’. This paints a rather grim picture of life in late medieval Ireland. While it is true that events in the fourteenth century such as the Bruce invasions and the Black Death did lead to social dislocation and economic recession, the effects on society may not have been as severe as is often portrayed. Roger Stalley and Tom McNeill, for example, have argued that there was no complete hiatus in building activity during this period. After a recession in the mid to late fourteenth century the construction industry recovered, building in a style—Irish Gothic—whose elements arrived from England between 1300 and 1350. Great social and economic changes did occur in the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries. There was a change from arable to pastoral agriculture, while research in east Galway, Meath, and the barony of Knockgraffon in Tipperary has shown that there was a fragmentation in major lordships, accompanied by a proliferation of both minor lordships and tower houses.
The Desmond Survey of the 1580s identifies a similar situation in County Limerick. The Elizabethan document is the first overall view of the county after the medieval period and it depicts a landscape divided up among lesser lords and tenants who paid dues in rents and services to their overlord, the Earl of Desmond. Precisely when this proliferation of lesser lordships occurred cannot be readily identified, but its correlation with the advent of tower houses from the fifteenth century onwards must be significant. In County Limerick tower houses show a marked concentration in the county’s fertile central plain. The rich land would have provided excellent pasture for cattle, a key factor in generating wealth for landowners. The tower house also emphasised the landowner’s position in society. Secure behind its walls, the tower house and bawn provided a landowner with protection from troublesome neighbours and raiders at a time when forays were the principal form of Irish warfare.

Monea Castle, County Fermanagh, was built in the aftermath of the Ulster plantation of 1609 and displays Scots Baronial architectural features.

The architecture of tower houses

No two tower houses are ever identical. While the same assemblage of architectural features occurring in one tower house can be present in a neighbouring building (thereby suggesting that both were erected at a similar period), the location, variety and number of features present in each individual building can differ. The presence of a shared architectural assemblage does, however, allow the buildings to be defined as a distinct architectural series. In addition, each tower house functions as a self-contained unit with the chambers inside stacked vertically, one over the other. Both of these factors result in the conformity of appearance throughout Ireland.

The majority of tower houses have a rectangular, nearly square, plan with tall walls which taper upwards from thick, base battered foundations (Fig. 2). The entrance is at ground floor level, framed by an arched doorway of dressed stone. The presence of a small hole set in one of the stone door jambs can betray where an iron door, or yett, once hung. Looking upwards a stone box at parapet level may be set directly out over the doorway. The open floor of this machicolation (Detail 1) allowed missiles to be dropped on assailants below. Bartizans and tourelles can jut out from an upper corner or the crenellated parapet (Detail 2), both providing the circuit of the building with additional defence. The entrance may lead into a small lobby, in the roof of which is often positioned a murder hole, another defensive feature and one which enabled the occupants to dispatch any unwelcomed visitor from the safety of the building’s first floor level. On one side of the lobby there may be the entrance to a small subsidiary chamber (perhaps a porter’s station), while often on the other side is the doorway leading onto the spiral staircase which gives access to the upper floor levels. The lobby may lead through to the large main chamber. Both main and subsidiary chambers may lie under stone barrel vaults, but the stress which vaults placed on the side walls often restricted their number in the finished tower house. As a result, the builders more often used wooden floors, set on joists which spanned the room and were supported on beams placed on stone supports (corbels) projecting from both side walls of the chamber (Detail 3).
Usually the floor plan is repeated in each of the upper levels, and each level’s internal space is divided between a main chamber and a subsidiary chamber. The timber doors throughout the building were hung on ‘hanging eyes’ (Detail 4) or pivot holes placed at the top inner side of the doorway, into which the door stile was inserted. The chambers can contain deep wall cupboards and fireplaces (though the latter are rarely found in subsidiary chambers). Long stone-roofed passages, housed in the thickness of a side wall, lead to the castle’s latrines. The latrine is set over a downward flue which allowed waste matter to fall through the shaft to an opening in the external wall-face where it was jettisoned from the building.
The narrow slit-like windows within their deep embrasures (Detail 5) at lower floor levels provided little light to the internal living area but had a necessary defensive quality. At upper floor levels defensive considerations were not as paramount the upper levels in the building may have elaborate mullioned windows, with carved heads. Projecting mouldings (hood moulds) set over the window on the external wall face were designed to throw rain water away from the opening. Such windows could also be accompanied by stone seats placed at either side of the window embrasure. The spiral staircase terminated at the parapet (sometimes in a caphouse) where there was a wallwalk, protected by stepped crenellation. The building lay under a pitched roof.
Variations in format do occur. Not all tower houses, for example, have rectangular floor plans. At Castle Troy, County Limerick, there is a unique and ingenious use of space within a five sided building, while there is also a small corpus of round tower houses, represented by buildings such as Ballynahow, County Tipperary. Side turrets can also be incorporated into the floor plan (particularly in north Leinster), as at Roodstown, County Louth. At buildings such as Castle Hewson, County Limerick, a straight flight of stone steps housed in the thickness of a side wall was favoured instead of a spiral staircase.
An early seventeenth century traveller, Fynes Moryson, stated that Irish cattle ‘eat only by day, and are brought at evening within the bawns of castles where they stand or lie all night in a dirty yard without so much as a lock of hay’. The bawn was a fortified enclosure where outbuildings (perhaps of timber) were located. The bawn walls were usually of stone and enclosed a rectangular area surrounding the tower house. Of a less substantial nature than the walls of the tower house, many bawns have been demolished. In County Limerick they have a particularly low survival rate, with only fourteen examples remaining.

Domestic life in a tower house

The most widely quoted description of life in a tower house is Luke Gernon’s 1620 account of a coshering, or feast, where the entertainments were held in the uppermost storey. Hospitality was showered upon the guests from the moment they entered until the time they departed. The fire was kindled in the chamber, the bard sang, and food, alcohol and tobacco were consumed in large quantities, though the guests may have been expected to share the castle’s beds since furniture was scarce. In a second document, written in 1644, the French traveller Bouillaye le Gouz states that the houses of the nobility were ‘nothing but square towers’, poorly lit, with little furniture and with floors covered in rushes a foot deep ‘of which they make their beds in summer, and straw in winter’. This account is perhaps a little too contemptuous. When compared to the thatched, mud-walled cabins in which the majority of the contemporary population dwelt, the tower house was a secure homestead with provision for heat and sanitation.
With defences designed to resist petty plunderers rather than marching armies, the tower house was not a citadel but the country seat of its time, bustling with the activities of everyday home life and the administration of the estate. The available evidence suggests that the buildings were not isolated on the landscape, but were economic and social centres in the rural community. A number of castles included in the pictorial maps of the Cromwellian Down Survey are accompanied by smaller buildings, while The Civil Survey of the 1650s records orchards, gardens, cottages, mills and dovecots associated with castles. Archaeological excavations in the vicinities of tower houses have produced evidence of contemporary activity in the form of cultivation furrows, out-houses, terraces and trackways. Pat O’Connor’s study of urban settlement in County Limerick identified at least thirty cases where a medieval church was located in close proximity to a tower house. This is further evidence for settlement nucleation, and echoes Luke Gernon’s statement that in every village there was a castle and church, with the villages ‘distant each from other about two miles’.
Like surviving stretches of town walls or medieval churches, the presence of a tower house can often indicate of the former medieval importance of a modern urban settlement, for a town’s merchants would have required protection in the event of a raid. Mulvany’s painting of circa 1800 shows a lively street scene in Kilmallock, County Limerick (Fig. 3). The street is framed by the roofless shells of merchant’s houses and stores in a trading centre which once had strong mercantile connections with Cork and Limerick. In 1690 John Stevens wrote: ‘The ruins show it to have been a good town, the houses being of stone, lofty and large, but most of them ruined, and but few of those that remain inhabited’. Pat O’Connor has highlighted lack of patronage, absentee landlords and economic eclipse by Charleville as reasons for the town’s post-medieval decay.

This computer enhanced reconstruction of Oola castle, County Limerick, a later tower house, shows the building as it may once have looked, with whitewashed walls,gables crowned with chimneys and mullioned windows.[Donnelly, Alexander & Pringle]

The defences of the tower house and its bawn engaged at two levels. At the first level the bawn’s shot holes and loops worked in conjunction with similar features in the tower house to hold an enemy away from the defensive circuit. If this circuit was breached then a second category of defences came into play as the inhabitants retreated into the tower house, firmly shutting the yett and wooden doors behind them. Shot holes made the doorway a ‘killing zone’, while a box machicolation on the parapet allowed missiles to be dropped on the heads of the aggressors below. If the enemy managed to break into the building the defenders closed the doors on the entrance lobby and then retreated upstairs. As the intruders stood in the lobby they could be attacked through the murder hole above their heads.
This is the theoretical application of the tower house defences, but architectural study in County Limerick has established that not all of these defensive features were present. Not all were deemed necessary for security—perhaps the cost was too high. While the medieval annals often refer to the capture of castles, it is unfortunate that the exact mechanisms used are rarely related, though some tantalising information does occasionally present itself. It is only with the Tudor conquest of the sixteenth century that information on tactics used in sieges increases, usually in government reports. This also corresponds to a period which witnessed an increase in the size of armies and greater use of artillery. The defences of the tower house were not designed to cope with either and many buildings suffered heavily. Detailed accounts of the siege of Glin Castle, County Limerick, in 1600 depict a bitter fight for possession.
The rebellion of 1641 saw a return to more traditional methods of warfare. Lacking artillery, the Irish raided or besieged the settlers in their tower houses and castles and attempted to starve them out. The arrival of the New Model Army in 1649 heralded the end of an inconclusive war. Well equipped with artillery, Parliament’s army crushed all opposition, including that thrown up by the humble tower house. In a letter to the speaker of the House of Commons in February 1650 Cromwell briefly mentions his capture of the tower house of Kilbeheny on the Cork/Limerick border. In contrast to his usually detailed accounts of military operations, Cromwell’s lack of detail may suggest that the building fell with relative ease.

The later tower houses and the end of a building tradition

There is a series of buildings which belong to the last phase of the developmental sequence of tower houses, during the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. In Munster the buildings are characterised by their gabled walls, cruciform roofs, large mullioned and transomed windows, and gun defences (Fig. 4). As with earlier tower houses, elaboration and architectural detail differs from one building to the next, but certain features still betray their kinship with the earlier Irish Gothic building tradition of more importance is the fact that they retain the function of self-contained units. The change in style reflects a general change in architecture during this period with the construction of major fortified houses such as Portumna, County Galway, and Burntcourt, County Tipperary. The desire for defence is still apparent in the form of shot holes and machicolations, but greater emphasis was now being placed on privacy, symmetry of plan, and increased provision of heat and light.
Erected by 1619, Monea Castle, County Fermanagh, (Fig. 5) is an example built in the aftermath of the Ulster plantation of 1609 and displaying Scots Baronial architectural features. The seventeenth century saw, however, a continuing shift towards low, thin walled fortified houses, as exemplified by Tully Castle, County Fermanagh, or Castle Baldwin, County Sligo, though defensive features such as murder holes and box machicolations could still be retained. Control of the country had now passed to the English government in Dublin, with consequent changes in social, political and economic organisation. One of the last examples of a traditional tower house is Derryhivenny Castle, County Galway, erected in 1643. A few tower houses were incorporated into the fabric of later country houses, as at Leap Castle, County Offaly, while other buildings were adapted for more prosaic use. At Ballyvoreen, County Limerick, there is an example of a tower house which was cut down in height to just above ground floor level, the remaining structure being converted for use as a two-storey farmhouse. In the aftermath of the Cromwellian settlement of the 1650’s some tower houses, such as Gortnetubbrid, County Limerick, were reused as garrisons for the New Model Army.
For the majority of the buildings, however, the seventeenth century brought about what Westropp described as a ‘dull dead ending’ for the building series, and they remain under siege today from neglect, stone-robbing and frost. The map (Fig. 6) displays the location of the 176 tower houses known on the Limerick landscape. Of this number, 102 definite or probable examples have been demolished. A further twenty-eight are severely damaged and only forty-six remain in a good state of preservation. As this erosion of our medieval past continues, clearly some form of long term strategy needs to be initiated to ensure that the best preserved examples from each county are protected for future generations.

Colm Donnelly has recently completed a PhD thesis on the tower-houses of County Limerick in the Department of Archaeology and Palaeoecology, Queen’s University. Belfast.

Further reading:

M. Craig, The Architecture of Ireland from earliest times to 1880 (London 1982).

Ruins that had fallen from the sky to the sea near Remnant Island, the Tower Ruins contains an interior of narrow paths with railings and broken bridges, large spinning gears and an exterior with a winding path that leads to the top of the tower.

Nayuta Herschel and Signa explore the ruins, making their way through fighting various monsters. Nayuta is crossing a bridge which suddenly breaks but is rescued by Signa. They continue to ascend to the top of the tower, where they find Noi lying on the floor. Zext di Quarius Dominador and Selam step through a dark portal which appears. Noi is then levitated and guided to Zext, who steals the Master Gear from her. She drops to the floor and the two antagonists leave through the portal from whence they came.


Bestowal dialogue

'The draught is ready -- all that remains is for it to be sprinkled upon the grounds within the ruins of Dol Ringwest. It will encourage and speed the growth of the natural vines that one often finds in such places -- so much so that by the end of the next spring the ruins will be buried in a great mass of them. In but a short time, they will reduce the ruins to naught but rubble, returning them to pristine nature once again.

'To you I offer the honour of this task, for I find now that I cannot bring myself to destroy the place that I once loved so, even in its decrepit state. Pour the draught onto the ground beneath the two towers that remain standing amongst the ruins.

'Time and the forces of nature will do the deed with no further help from us.'


Calengil has prepared his draught and has offered you the honour of cleansing Dol Ringwest. The draught will in time encourage the growth of great vines that will entwine the ruins, tearing them down and returning them to pristine nature.

Objective 1

  • Find the first tower of Dol Ringwest
  • Use the draught near the first tower
  • Find the second tower of Dol Ringwest
  • Use the draught near the second tower

Dol Ringwest is west of Duillond.

Calengil bade you pour the cleansing draught upon the ground at the base of two towers that remain standing in the ruins of Dol Ringwest.

Calengil: 'Dol Ringwest can be found to the west. Take the draught to the towers there.' Use the Cleansing Draught here Draught used Use the Cleansing Draught here Draught used

Objective 2

Calengil is in Duillond, east of Dol Ringwest.

You should return to Calengil and inform him that your task in the ruins of Dol Ringwest is complete.

Objects [ edit ]

    Jumping Puzzles: Vizier's Tower — Complete the jumping puzzle. (10 ) Daily: Daily Vizier's Tower Jumping Puzzle — Complete the Vizier's Tower jumping puzzle in Straits of Devastation. (0 ) Astralaria IV: The Cosmos:    Star Chart: Eye of Grenth— During the night, use the Celestial Cartographer's Gear near the chest at the top of the Vizier's Tower in the Straits of Devastation to chart the human constellation Eye of Grenth.The Flameseeker Prophecies I: The Experimental Shield:    The Flameseeker— Bring an Anthology of Villains to examine the Broken Mursaat statue at the top of the Vizier's Tower in the Straits of Devastation.Incinerator I: The Experimental Dagger:    Orrian Building Materials— Gather a sample of the materials used by the ancient Orrians from the altar in the Vizier's Tower in Straits of Devastation. The following achievements require using the diving goggles at the end of the jumping puzzle.
      Kamohoali'i Kotaki III: Carcharias:    Vizier's Plunge— Dive into the water using diving goggles near the Vizier's Tower in Straits of Devastation.The Minstrel III: The Bard:    Vizier's Performance— Perform a Flip using the Vizier's Tower diving goggles in Straits of Devastation.
      Mad Armory: Carapace of Chaos:    Ghostly Curse Essence— While under the ghostly aura of certain Halloween foods, loot the chest atop the Vizier's Tower in Straits of Devastation.Twilight I: The Experimental Nightsword:    Orr's Fall— Visit the Vizier's Tower, where the fall of Orr originated, and loot this from the chest there.


    Item Location Games
    White Herb By a dead log in the southwest  Sw   Sh 
    Max Revive Against the ruined tower  Sw   Sh 

    Hidden items

    Unless otherwise stated, hidden items in the Wild Area regenerate every day. In many of these cases, they can also regenerate as different items.

    Every item that regenerates every day can also rarely regenerate as a Wishing Piece (at approximately a 1% chance).

    Item Location Games
    Tiny Mushroom By the tree standing away from the cliff in the southwest  Sw   Sh 
    Big Mushroom
    Tiny Mushroom By the small tree along the west cliff wall north of the Dappled Grove border  Sw   Sh 
    Big Mushroom
    Revive On the northeast side of the ruined tower  Sw   Sh 
    Poké Ball On the northeast side of the ruined tower  Sw   Sh 

    Berry tree

    Shaking a Berry tree can yield Berries, but a Pokémon may be shaken loose instead and steal some of the Berries after a battle.

    Item Location Games
    Cheri Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 
    Leppa Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 
    Oran Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 
    Sitrus Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 
    Tamato Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 
    Liechi Berry Can fall from the Berry tree  Sw   Sh 

    Graveyards, defensive towers, roads, fire pits and even some walls are built by the drones in the corruption. They will serve as spawn point for monsters when completed. Monsters will not repair damaged buildings over time, but may try to upgrade them anyway, therefore increasing their current/total health. Enemy buildings will gain 100 health for every single resource put into them.

    Currently there is a bug, that makes brand new corruption building sites undestroyable. They have 0 health and cannot be damaged until current map is restarted. Then their health increases to 1 point and they become vulnerable to demolishion by any source of damage.

    Watch the video: Associate Professor Olga Levaniouk