The castle was built in the latter part of the 11th century on a steep hill.
There are remains of the 11th century enclosure and hall and of an early 12th century great tower.
The 13th century was the time of the castle's greatest history. King John considered it to be his favourite residence and spent a great deal improving the royal accommodation and defences. To the east of the Henry I keep he built a fine hall and chapel together with domestic buildings, known as the Gloriette.
In the 13th century Henry III constructed additional walls and towers including two gatehouses. In addition, he had the exterior walls whitewashed (as he also did at the Tower of London).
Edward I completed his father's work and the castle continued to be an important centre of the whole domain of Purbeck.
During the Civil War the castle was besieged on two occasions. In 1643 the Royalist castle withstood the attack but in 1646, having infiltrated the garrison with apparently friendly troops who later admitted the besiegers, the castle fell into Parliamentary hands.
Parliament voted to demolish the castle and, having thoroughly plundered the building, the castle was reduced to a ruin by gunpowder and mines.
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Tel: 01929 481294 - Infoline Corfe Castle Website