In 1092 a castle, presumably of earth and timber, was first built at Carlisle, on an elevated site to the north of the city. Converted into stone during the course of the twelfth century, and substantially increased in size, it has occupied the same spot ever since. The buildings have witnessed dramatic events on the Anglo-Scottish border, which are fully documented in this account, as well as periods of concentrated building activity, and years of decline and neglect. The castle today is one of the major properties in the care of English Heritage: this study traces the stages through which the use of the castle has gone in both war and peacetime up to and including its present state. The historical account of the castle is preceded by a full survey of the standing buildings, including many accurate scale drawings of the keep, the Captain's and De Ireby's Towers, and other main elements. The volume is intended as a comprehensive statement and record of this important castle.