12th century castle halls were massive and gloomy, with few furnishings. In the 13th century halls became lighter and more comfortably furnished. The Great hall of Winchester was the first and finest of these halls.

With its Purbeck stone columns and pointed arches, it had all the best features of Early English Gothic architecture. Plastered and decorated walls emphasised its lightness, elegance and grace. The finest and most brilliant colours were used.

The Hall reflected the preferences and tastes of Henry III. He was born at Winchester Castle in 1207 and loved to return here. During his reign (1216-72) art, architecture and design became more refined and sophisticated. This trend was reflected in the Great hall.

The Hall was the heart of the Castle. When in residence the King dined here, discussed affairs of State with his barons and clergy and sat in court to administer justice.

King Arthur`s round table on the far wall....

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