A defensive wall is a fortification used to protect a city, town or other settlement from potential aggressors. In ancient to modern times, they were used to enclose settlements; these are referred to as city walls or town walls, although there were walls, such as the Great Wall of China, Walls of Benin, Hadrian's Wall, Anastasian Wall, the Cyclopean Wall Rajgir and the metaphorical Atlantic Wall, which extended far beyond the borders of a city and were used to enclose regions or mark territorial boundaries. In mountainous terrain, defensive walls such as letzis were used in combination with castles to seal valleys from potential attack. Beyond their defensive utility, many walls had important symbolic functions – representing the status and independence of the communities they embraced. Existing ancient walls are always masonry structures, although brick and timber-built variants are known. Depending on the topography of the area surrounding the city or the settlement the wall is intended to protect, elements of the terrain such as rivers or coastlines may be incorporated in order to make the wall more effective.
Walls may only be crossed by entering the appropriate city gate and are supplemented with towers. The practice of building these massive walls, though having its origins in prehistory, was refined during the rise of city-states, energetic wall-building continued into the medieval period and beyond in certain parts of Europe. Simpler defensive walls of earth or stone, thrown up around hillforts, early castles and the like, tend to be referred to as ramparts or banks. From early history to modern times, walls have been a near necessity for every city. Uruk in ancient Sumer is one of the world's oldest known walled cities. Before that, the proto-city of Jericho in the West Bank in Palestine had a wall surrounding it as early as the 8th millennium BC; the Assyrians deployed large labour forces to build new palaces and defensive walls. Some settlements in the Indus Valley Civilization were fortified. By about 3500 BC, hundreds of small farming villages dotted the Indus floodplain. Many of these settlements had planned streets.
The stone and mud brick houses of Kot Diji were clustered behind massive stone flood dykes and defensive walls, for neighboring communities quarreled about the control of prime agricultural land. Mundigak in present-day south-east Afghanistan has defensive walls and square bastions of sun dried bricks. Babylon was one of the most famous cities of the ancient world as a result of the building program of Nebuchadnezzar, who expanded the walls and built the Ishtar Gate. Exceptions were few, but neither ancient Sparta nor ancient Rome had walls for a long time, choosing to rely on their militaries for defense instead; these fortifications were simple constructions of wood and earth, which were replaced by mixed constructions of stones piled on top of each other without mortar. In Central Europe, the Celts built large fortified settlements which the Romans called oppida, whose walls seem influenced by those built in the Mediterranean; the fortifications were continuously improved. In ancient Greece, large stone walls had been built in Mycenaean Greece, such as the ancient site of Mycenae.
In classical era Greece, the city of Athens built a long set of parallel stone walls called the Long Walls that reached their guarded seaport at Piraeus. Large rammed earth walls were built in ancient China since the Shang Dynasty, as the capital at ancient Ao had enormous walls built in this fashion. Although stone walls were built in China during the Warring States, mass conversion to stone architecture did not begin in earnest until the Tang Dynasty. Sections of the Great Wall had been built prior to the Qin Dynasty and subsequently connected and fortified during the Qin dynasty, although its present form was an engineering feat and remodeling of the Ming Dynasty; the large walls of Pingyao serve as one example. The walls of the Forbidden City in Beijing were established in the early 15th century by the Yongle Emperor; the Romans fortified their cities with mortar-bound stone walls. Among these are the extant Aurelian Walls of Rome and the Theodosian Walls of Constantinople, together with partial remains elsewhere.
These are city gates, like the Porta Nigra in Trier or Newport Arch in Lincoln. Apart from these, the early Middle Ages saw the creation of some towns built around castles; these cities were only protected by simple stone walls and more by a combination of both walls and ditches. From the 12th century AD hundreds of settlements of all sizes were founded all across Europe, which often obtained the right of fortification soon afterwards; the founding of urban centers was an important means of territorial expansion and many cities in central and eastern Europe, were founded for this purpose during the period of Eastern settlement. These cities are easy to recognise due to their regular layout and large market spaces; the fortifications of these settlements were continuously improved to reflect the current level of military development. During the Renaissance era, the Venetians raised great walls around cities threatened by the Ottoman Empire. Examples include the walled cities of Nicosia and Famagusta in Cyprus and the fortifications of Candia and Chania in Crete, which still stand.
At its simplest, a defensive wall consists of its gates. For the most part, the top of the walls were accessible, with the outside of the walls ha
A skyscraper is a continuously habitable high-rise building that has over 40 floors and is taller than 150 m. The term first referred to buildings with 10 to 20 floors in the 1880s; the definition shifted with advancing construction technology during the 20th century. Skyscrapers may host both. For buildings above a height of 300 m, the term "supertall" can be used, while skyscrapers reaching beyond 600 m are classified as "megatall". One common feature of skyscrapers is having a steel framework; these curtain walls either bear on the framework below or are suspended from the framework above, rather than resting on load-bearing walls of conventional construction. Some early skyscrapers have a steel frame that enables the construction of load-bearing walls taller than of those made of reinforced concrete. Modern skyscrapers' walls are not load-bearing, most skyscrapers are characterized by large surface areas of windows made possible by steel frames and curtain walls. However, skyscrapers can have curtain walls that mimic conventional walls with a small surface area of windows.
Modern skyscrapers have a tubular structure, are designed to act like a hollow cylinder to resist wind and other lateral loads. To appear more slender, allow less wind exposure, transmit more daylight to the ground, many skyscrapers have a design with setbacks, which are sometimes structurally required; the term "skyscraper" was first applied to buildings of steel framed construction of at least 10 stories in the late 19th century, a result of public amazement at the tall buildings being built in major American cities like Chicago, New York City, Detroit, St. Louis; the first steel-frame skyscraper was the Home Insurance Building in Chicago, Illinois in 1885. Some point to Philadelphia's 10-story Jayne Building as a proto-skyscraper, or to New York's seven-floor Equitable Life Building, built in 1870, for its innovative use of a kind of skeletal frame, but such designation depends on what factors are chosen; the scholars making the argument find it to be purely academic. The structural definition of the word skyscraper was refined by architectural historians, based on engineering developments of the 1880s that had enabled construction of tall multi-story buildings.
This definition was based on the steel skeleton—as opposed to constructions of load-bearing masonry, which passed their practical limit in 1891 with Chicago's Monadnock Building. What is the chief characteristic of the tall office building? It is lofty, it must be tall. The force and power of altitude must be in it, the glory and pride of exaltation must be in it, it must be every inch a proud and soaring thing, rising in sheer exaltation that from bottom to top it is a unit without a single dissenting line. — Louis Sullivan's The Tall Office Building Artistically Considered The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat defines skyscrapers as those buildings which reach or exceed 150 m in height. Others in the United States and Europe draw the lower limit of a skyscraper at 150 m; the Emporis Standards Committee defines a high-rise building as "a multi-story structure between 35–100 meters tall, or a building of unknown height from 12–39 floors" and a skyscraper as "a multi-story building whose architectural height is at least 100 m or 330 ft."
Some structural engineers define a highrise as any vertical construction for which wind is a more significant load factor than earthquake or weight. Note that this criterion fits not only high-rises but some other tall structures, such as towers; the word skyscraper carries a connotation of pride and achievement. The skyscraper, in name and social function, is a modern expression of the age-old symbol of the world center or axis mundi: a pillar that connects earth to heaven and the four compass directions to one another; the tallest building in ancient times was the 146 m Great Pyramid of Giza in ancient Egypt, built in the 26th century BC. It was not surpassed in height for thousands of years, the 160 m Lincoln Cathedral having exceeded it in 1311–1549, before its central spire collapsed; the latter in turn was not surpassed until the 555-foot Washington Monument in 1884. However, being uninhabited, none of these structures comply with the modern definition of a skyscraper. High-rise apartments flourished in classical antiquity.
Ancient Roman insulae in imperial cities reached 10 and more stories. Beginning with Augustus, several emperors attempted to establish limits of 20–25 m for multi-story buildings, but met with only limited success. Lower floors were occupied by shops or wealthy families, the upper rented to the lower classes. Surviving Oxyrhynchus Papyri indicate that seven-story buildings existed in provincial towns such as in 3rd century AD Hermopolis in Roman Egypt; the skylines of many important medieval cities had large numbers of high-rise urban towers, built by the wealthy for defense and status. The residential Towers of 12th century Bologna numbered between 80 and 100 at a time, the tallest of, the 97.2 m high Asinelli Tower. A Florentine law of 1251 decreed that all urban buildings be reduced to less than 26 m. Medium-sized towns of the era are known to have proliferations of towers, such as the 72 up to 51 m height in San Gimignano; the medieval Egyptian city of Fustat housed many high-rise residential buildings, which Al-Muqaddasi in the 10th century described as resembling minarets.
Nasir Khusraw in the early 11th century described some of them rising up to 14 stories, with roof gardens on t
Belém Tower, or the "Tower of St Vincent", is a fortified tower located in the civil parish of Santa Maria de Belém in the municipality of Lisbon, Portugal. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of the significant role it played in the Portuguese maritime discoveries of the era of the Age of Discoveries; the tower was commissioned by King John II to be part of a defence system at the mouth of the Tagus river and a ceremonial gateway to Lisbon. The tower was built in the early 16th century and is a prominent example of the Portuguese Manueline style, but it incorporates hints of other architectural styles; the structure was built from Lioz limestone and is composed of a bastion and a 30-metre, four-storey tower. It has incorrectly been stated that the tower was built in the middle of the Tagus and now sits near the shore because the river was redirected after the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. In fact, the tower was built on a small island in the Tagus River near the Lisbon shore. In the late 15th century, King John II had designed a defence system for the mouth of the Tagus that depended on the fortresses of Cascais and São Sebastião in Caparica on the south side of the river.
These fortresses did not protect the river's mouth, further protection was required. In his "Chronicle of John II", which appeared in 1545, the author Garcia de Resende affirmed the king's opinion that the defences of Lisbon were inadequate, that he had insisted on building fortifications along the entrance to the River Tagus to supplement the existing defences. To this end, he died before any plans were drawn. King Manuel I of Portugal revisited the proposal twenty years and ordered the construction of a military fortification on the northern margin of the Tagus at Belém. In 1513, Lourenço Fernandes wrote a letter to his friends referring to the king's intention of constructing a tower near Restelo Velho, having determined it to be essential; the project was started on a basaltic rock outcrop a short distance from the riverbank, using some of the stone being collected to build the Monastery of Santa Maria de Belém. The tower was designed by military architect Francisco de Arruda, named "Master of the works of the Belém stronghold" by King Manuel, in 1516 he began receiving 763 blocks and 504 stones for its construction, delivered by Diogo Rodrigues, treasurer for the project.
As construction progressed, a man-of-war called the Grande Nau, a armed, 1000–ton ship continued to guard the estuary at the mouth of the Tagus until the fort's completion. The building was finished in 1519, just two years before Manuel's death, Gaspar de Paiva was temporarily stationed to command the fortress. In 1571, Francisco de Holanda advised the monarch that it was necessary to improve the coastal defences in order to protect the kingdom's capital, he suggested the construction of a "strong and impregnable" fort that could defend Lisbon and that the Belém Tower "should be strengthened and completed...that it has cost so much without being completed". D'Holanda designed an improved rectangular bastion with several turrets. In 1580, after a few hours of battle, the garrison stationed in the tower surrendered to Spanish forces under the command of the Duke of Alba. After this defeat, the dungeons of the tower served as a prison until 1830, it was during the last quarter of the 16th century that the construction of the Philippine Barracks began.
A rectangular two-storey space was constructed over the bastion, giving the tower the visual profile that it has retained to the present, with sculpted crosses of the Order of Christ and domed turrets. In 1589, Philip I of Portugal ordered Italian engineer Friar João Vicenzio Casale to build a well-defended fort to be constructed in place of the "useless castle of São Vicente"; the engineer submitted three designs, proposing that the bastion would be surrounded by another bastion of greater dimensions, but the project never materialized. A 1633 codex for the House of Cadaval was inserted into one of the floors, in one of the arches of the barracks, in the four largest arches at the top of the southern façade. A reference to the year 1655 was inscribed on a plaque placed on the northern wall of the cloister, which certified the tower's function as a customs control point and for navigation along the Tagus. Between 1780 and 1782, under the reign of Maria I of Portugal, General Guilherme de Valleré constructed the Forte do Bom Sucesso, whose battery was connected by a western corridor wall to the tower.
When French forces invaded Lisbon during the Peninsular War, detachments of their troops were quartered in the tower from 1808 to 1814. After the French retreated, Lord Beresford advised that coastal artillery batteries should be reinforced along the Tagus, noted that stronger batteries should be placed on the sides of the tower's bastion, with carts placed to better protect the soldiers, since the walls were low. King Miguel I used the dungeons to imprison his liberal opponents, while another level was used as a custom house for ships until the duty on foreign ships was abolished in 1833; the tower received military upgrades in 1589 and 1809–1814. During the reign of Maria II, Almeida Garrett protested the site's degradation and under the persu
Newark Castle, Port Glasgow
Newark Castle is a well-preserved castle sited on the south shore of the estuary of the River Clyde in Port Glasgow, Scotland, where the firth narrows from the Firth of Clyde and navigation upriver is made difficult by shifting sandbanks. For centuries this location was used to offload seagoing ships, led to the growth of Port Glasgow close to the castle on either side and to the south; when dredging techniques made the Clyde navigable as far as Glasgow the port became a shipbuilding centre, the castle was surrounded by shipyards. Ferguson Shipbuilders, the last shipyard on the lower Clyde, stands close to the west of the castle, but the shipyards to the east were removed around the 1980s and new landscaped areas formed to the east of Newark Castle, opening up scenic views of the castle and across the Clyde from a new bypass road; the castle was built in 1478 by George Maxwell when he inherited the Barony of Finlanstone in the parish of Kilmacolm. The original castle had a tower house within a walled enclosure or barmkin entered through a large gatehouse.
All that remains of the outer defensive wall is from one of the original corner towers. It is thought that there would have been a hall and ancillary buildings such as a bakehouse and brew house inside the walled enclosure. In the late 16th century the castle was inherited by Sir Patrick Maxwell, a powerful friend of king James VI of Scotland and, notorious for murdering two members of a rival family and beating his wife who left him after having 16 children. In 1597 Sir Patrick expanded the building, constructing a new north range replacing the earlier hall in the form of a three storey Renaissance mansion. At this time the barmkin wall was demolished except for the north east tower, converted into a doocot; the central part of the mansion has cellars with tiny windows under a main hall with large windows, other accommodation above that. An east wing with the main entrance door close to the main block links it to the original tower house, suitably modified, a short west wing connects to the gatehouse.
The mansion has features of the Scottish baronial style including crow-stepped gables and north corners embellished with corbelled turrets. At the centre of its north wall a stairwell supported out on corbelling gives access to the upper floor. In 1668 the Glasgow authorities purchased 18 acres of land around Newark Castle from Sir George Maxwell, the laird, developed the harbour into what they called "Port Glasgow"; the last Maxwell died in 1694 and the castle had a series of non-resident owners. An early tenant was a ropemaker called John Orr who dealt in wild animals such as big cats and bears which he obtained from ships visiting the Clyde and housed in the castle cellars; the cellars and gardens were rented by Charles Williamson who blocked access from the hall to stop the joiner John Gardner who rented the hall from stealing fruit stored in the cellars. John Smith in 1895 records that the stump of the dule tree were preserved in the castle grounds. Newark Castle came into state care in 1909 and is now a property of Historic Scotland with excellent visitor facilities.
Doocot Skelmorlie Castle Robert Montgomerie and Patrick Newall Historic Environment Scotland. "Newark Castle, Port Glasgow". Places to Visit - Newark Castle, Port Glasgow Map sources for Newark Castle, Port Glasgow
A bay window is a window space projecting outward from the main walls of a building and forming a bay in a room. Bay window is a generic term for all protruding window constructions, regardless of whether they run over one or multiple storeys. In plan, the most used shapes are isosceles trapezoid and rectangle, but other polygonal shapes with more than two corners are common as are curved shapes. If a bay window is curved it may alternatively be called bow window. Bay windows in a triangular shape with just one corner exist but are rare. A bay window supported by a corbel, bracket or similar is called an oriel window. Most medieval bay windows and up to the baroque era are oriel windows, they appear as a ornamented addition to the building rather than an organic part of it. During the Gothic period they serve as small house chapels, with the oriel window containing an altar and resembling an apse of a church. In Nuremberg these are called Chörlein with the most famous example being the one from the parsonage of St. Sebaldus Church.
Oriental oriel windows such as the Arab Mashrabiya are made of wood and allow viewing out while restricting visibility from the outside. In warmer climates a bay window may be identical to a balcony with a privacy shield or screen. Bay windows can make a room appear larger, provide views of the outside which would be unavailable with an ordinary flat window, they are found in terraced houses and detached houses as well as in blocks of flats. Based on British models, their use spread to other English speaking countries like the US, Canada and Australia. Following the pioneering model of pre-modern commercial architecture at the Oriel Chambers in Liverpool, they feature on early Chicago School skyscrapers where they run the whole height of the building's upper storeys. Bay windows were identified as a defining characteristic of San Francisco architecture in a 2012 study that had a machine learning algorithm examine a random sample of 25,000 photos of cities from Google Street View. Bay window caboose Bow window Bretèche Oriel window Gagnon, Jerome.
"Gaining bonus space and light with bay windows". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 21 October 2012
Château de Chaumont
The Château de Chaumont is a castle in Chaumont-sur-Loire, Loir-et-Cher, France. The castle was founded in the 10th century by Count of Blois. After Pierre d'Amboise rebelled against Louis XI, the king ordered the castle's destruction. In the 15th century Château de Chaumont was rebuilt by Charles I d'Amboise. Protected as a monument historique since 1840, the château was given into state ownership in 1938 and is now open to the public; the name Chaumont derives from the French chauve mont, meaning "bald hill". The first castle on this site, situated between Blois and Amboise, was built by Odo I, Count of Blois, in the 10th century, with the purpose of protecting his lands from attacks from his feudal rivals, Fulk Nerra, Count of Anjou. On his behalf the Norman Gelduin improved it and held it as his own, his great-niece Denise de Fougère, having married Sulpice d'Amboise, passed the château into the Amboise family for five centuries. Pierre d'Amboise unsuccessfully rebelled against King Louis XI and his property was confiscated, the castle was dismantled on royal order in 1465.
It was rebuilt by Charles I d'Amboise from 1465–1475 and finished by his son, Charles II d'Amboise de Chaumont from 1498–1510, with help from his uncle, Cardinal Georges d'Amboise. The château was acquired by Catherine de Medici in 1550. There she entertained numerous astrologers, among them Nostradamus; when her husband, Henry II, died in 1559 she forced his mistress, Diane de Poitiers, to accept the Château de Chaumont in exchange for the Château de Chenonceau which Henry had given to de Poitiers. Diane de Poitiers only lived at Chaumont for a short while. In 1594, at the death of Diane's granddaughter Charlotte de la Marck, the château passed to her husband, Henri de La Tour d'Auvergne, Duke of Bouillon, who sold it to a tax farmer Largentier, who had grown rich on gathering in the salt tax called the gabelle. Largentier being arrested for peculation, the château and the title of sieur de Chaumont passed into a family originating at Lucca, who possessed it until 1667, when it passed by family connections to the seigneurs de Ruffignac.
Paul de Beauvilliers, duc de Beauvilliers and duc de Saint-Aignan, bought the château in 1699, modernized some of its interiors and decorated it with sufficient grandeur to house the duc d'Anjou on his way to become king of Spain in 1700. His eventual heir was forced to sell Chaumont to pay his debts to a maître des requêtes ordinaire to Louis XV, Monsieur Bertin, who demolished the north wing built by Charles II d'Amboise and the Cardinal d'Amboise, to open the house towards the river view in the modern fashion. In 1750, Jacques-Donatien Le Ray purchased the castle as a country home where he established a glassmaking and pottery factory, he was considered by the French as a "Father of the American Revolution". However, in 1789, the new French Revolutionary Government seized Le Ray's assets, including his beloved Château de Chaumont. Madame de Staël acquired the château in 1810; the comte d'Aramon bought the neglected château in 1833, undertook extensive renovations under the architect Jules Potier de la Morandière of Blois, inspector of the works at the château de Blois.
By 1851 the "Chaumont suite" of early-16th century Late Gothic tapestries with subjects of country life emblematic of the triumph of Eternity associated with Chaumont and now at the Cleveland Museum of Art, was still hanging in the "Chambre de Catherine de Médicis". The castle has been classified as a Monument historique since 1840 by the French Ministry of Culture. Marie-Charlotte Say, heiress to the Léon Say sugar fortune, acquired Chaumont in 1875; that year, she married Amédée de Broglie, who commissioned the luxurious stables in 1877 to designs by Paul-Ernest Sanson, further restored the château under Sanson's direction and replanted the surrounding park in the English naturalistic landscape fashion. She donated Château de Chaumont to the government in 1938; the Château de Chaumont is a museum and every year hosts a Garden Festival from April to October where contemporary garden designers display their work in an English-style garden. List of castles in France Official website for Chaumont Photos of Château de Chaumont and other Loire castles
In the history of Europe, the Middle Ages lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. It began with the fall of the Western Roman Empire and merged into the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery; the Middle Ages is the middle period of the three traditional divisions of Western history: classical antiquity, the medieval period, the modern period. The medieval period is itself subdivided into the Early and Late Middle Ages. Population decline, counterurbanisation, collapse of centralized authority and mass migrations of tribes, which had begun in Late Antiquity, continued in the Early Middle Ages; the large-scale movements of the Migration Period, including various Germanic peoples, formed new kingdoms in what remained of the Western Roman Empire. In the 7th century, North Africa and the Middle East—once part of the Byzantine Empire—came under the rule of the Umayyad Caliphate, an Islamic empire, after conquest by Muhammad's successors. Although there were substantial changes in society and political structures, the break with classical antiquity was not complete.
The still-sizeable Byzantine Empire, Rome's direct continuation, survived in the Eastern Mediterranean and remained a major power. The empire's law code, the Corpus Juris Civilis or "Code of Justinian", was rediscovered in Northern Italy in 1070 and became admired in the Middle Ages. In the West, most kingdoms incorporated the few extant Roman institutions. Monasteries were founded; the Franks, under the Carolingian dynasty established the Carolingian Empire during the 8th and early 9th century. It covered much of Western Europe but succumbed to the pressures of internal civil wars combined with external invasions: Vikings from the north, Magyars from the east, Saracens from the south. During the High Middle Ages, which began after 1000, the population of Europe increased as technological and agricultural innovations allowed trade to flourish and the Medieval Warm Period climate change allowed crop yields to increase. Manorialism, the organisation of peasants into villages that owed rent and labour services to the nobles, feudalism, the political structure whereby knights and lower-status nobles owed military service to their overlords in return for the right to rent from lands and manors, were two of the ways society was organised in the High Middle Ages.
The Crusades, first preached in 1095, were military attempts by Western European Christians to regain control of the Holy Land from Muslims. Kings became the heads of centralised nation-states, reducing crime and violence but making the ideal of a unified Christendom more distant. Intellectual life was marked by scholasticism, a philosophy that emphasised joining faith to reason, by the founding of universities; the theology of Thomas Aquinas, the paintings of Giotto, the poetry of Dante and Chaucer, the travels of Marco Polo, the Gothic architecture of cathedrals such as Chartres are among the outstanding achievements toward the end of this period and into the Late Middle Ages. The Late Middle Ages was marked by difficulties and calamities including famine and war, which diminished the population of Europe. Controversy and the Western Schism within the Catholic Church paralleled the interstate conflict, civil strife, peasant revolts that occurred in the kingdoms. Cultural and technological developments transformed European society, concluding the Late Middle Ages and beginning the early modern period.
The Middle Ages is one of the three major periods in the most enduring scheme for analysing European history: classical civilisation, or Antiquity. The "Middle Ages" first appears in Latin in 1469 as media tempestas or "middle season". In early usage, there were many variants, including medium aevum, or "middle age", first recorded in 1604, media saecula, or "middle ages", first recorded in 1625; the alternative term "medieval" derives from medium aevum. Medieval writers divided history into periods such as the "Six Ages" or the "Four Empires", considered their time to be the last before the end of the world; when referring to their own times, they spoke of them as being "modern". In the 1330s, the humanist and poet Petrarch referred to pre-Christian times as antiqua and to the Christian period as nova. Leonardo Bruni was the first historian to use tripartite periodisation in his History of the Florentine People, with a middle period "between the fall of the Roman Empire and the revival of city life sometime in late eleventh and twelfth centuries".
Tripartite periodisation became standard after the 17th-century German historian Christoph Cellarius divided history into three periods: ancient and modern. The most given starting point for the Middle Ages is around 500, with the date of 476 first used by Bruni. Starting dates are sometimes used in the outer parts of Europe. For Europe as a whole, 1500 is considered to be the end of the Middle Ages, but there is no universally agreed upon end date. Depending on the context, events such as the conquest of Constantinople by the Turks in 1453, Christopher Columbus's first voyage to the Americas in 1492, or the Protestant Reformation in 1517 are sometimes used. English historians use the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 to mark the end of the period. For Spain, dates used are the death of King Ferdinand II in 1516, the death of Queen Isabella I of Castile in 1504, or the conquest of Granada in 1492. Historians from Romance-speaking countries tend to divide the Middle Ages into two parts: an earlier "High" and late