Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/444

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A HISTORY OF WARWICKSHIRE scarped into a crescent, presenting a convex front to the south-east some 300 yards in length ; this crescent is defended by an artificial bank some 20 feet high and 20 feet broad which has been raised upon it. On the top of this earthwork four circular mounds, the largest of which is 40 feet in diameter at its base, were also erected at intervals ; these mounds at a later date were called ' cavaliers,' and upon them mangonels were probably placed for defensive purposes. In front of this bank again is a wide fosse, 40 feet deep and 100 feet broad, which was formerly filled with water ; it has, to a large extent, been filled up for nearly half of its length by the earth thrown into it when the comparatively recent road running alongside of it to the north-east was made. All these formidable earthworks, now overgrown with trees and shrubs, are known as the ' Brays,' anciently ' Brayz.' Near their centre, opposite to the spot where the highway approaches them from the south-east, and separated from the road by the above-named deep ditch, are to be seen the remains of two circular stone bastions. These guarded the main entrance to the castle, which was originally by a road passing be- tween them and then leading over several drawbridges and along the top of the dam to Mortimer's Tower. Beyond the Brays again, re- mains of still further earthworks, consisting of a slight bank and a ditch, are distinctly traceable. 1 Saxon origin has been claimed for the mount and court fort here ; but it is more probable that this was the ' castle ' which, according to the register of Kenilworth Priory, was erected by the Norman lord soon after 1120. History throws light upon the date of several of the later earthworks, but these details must be dealt with in a subsequent volume. KENT'S MOAT. See Sheldon. KINETON (8 miles east-south-east of Stratford-on-Avon). The remains of some earthworks of the mount and court type are to be seen near the railway station of this once important little town ; they are known locally as King John's Castle. The ' Castle ' is situated at the bottom of the slope of Pittern Hill, on the right bank of a stream which skirts the south side of the town. The extant works consist chiefly of a round conical artificial mount, about 125 feet in diameter at its base, and with a truncated top measur- ing about 40 feet across. This mount formerly had what Gibson, writing in 1694, described as a 'broad deep ditch' round it, 2 only traces of which are now however to be made out. To the north and north-west of the mount or 'keep' are some fragments of ramparts and ditches, evidently remnants of the defences of a courtyard. Various coins, some of them Roman, have been found upon the site of the castle, and some ancient pottery was also dug up when the railway station was made. 3 i Dugdale's Warw. pp. 161-2 and 165-75 ; Clark's Mil. Archit. vol. i. p. 80 and vol. ii. pp. 130- 52 ; Turner's Shaks. Land, pp. 107-25 ; Burgess' Warw. pp. 145-53. 1 Camden's Brit. (Gibson ed. 1695), p. 510. See article on ' Romano-British Warwickshire,' ante. 382