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The First Siege of Windsor Castle
Barons besiege Prince John 1193

Having been founded in 1070, it was over a hundred years before the defences of Windsor Castle were first put to the test. While King Richard the Lionheart was away fighting in the Third Crusade, his brother, Prince John, plotted against the Crown and arranged to have him captured and imprisoned by Leopold of Austria in December 1192. The prince subsequently built up a strong garrison at Windsor Castle, much to the resentment of the English barons who remained loyal to their King. In March 1193, therefore, the  Justiciar, Archbishop Walter of Rouen, sent a large force of knights, under the command of William Marshal, to surround the castle and trap John inside. It was always said, however, that this siege was "not very earnest" because the Archbishop had many friends holed up with the prince. At any rate, by April, the castle had surrendered and was soon delivered into the hands of Eleanor, the Queen Mother.

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