Thursday, May 22, 2014

City Walls (1 of 7)

These were on my hard drive. I was attempting to write everyday, and then suddenly I wasn't writing everyday. I don't understand why blogger is changing the format to something that looks like a retarded poem.

Easily defendable land & walled cities
It seems an article of faith in the modern age that cities should be sprawled out upon an open plain.
The wall, as a technology of defense has been overpowered by siege weapons- the tank, artillery,
grenades, in many cases even just gunfire if concentrated long enough on one spot, could do the
But the walls of an ancient city did not just serve to keep rival militaries out. Entry and exit was
formalized to a degree. The gates must be opened and closed, and the gates almost necessarily
provided for a natural location of density. Yes, the authorities could snoop and generally make the
entry and exit and unpleasant affair, but the gate were also often a place for discovery. What
products are coming to the market? What new visitors to the city?
The walls probably served best to keep known criminals out, perhaps occasionally, they kept a few
Even a whore dresses to go to market. Likewise a city has walls and formal points of entry. A
negotation takes place.
A city does not depend solely on walls for defense either. . From a market perspective, the
intersection of two trade routes means a prosperous city, but a city that is constantly overpowered is
not prosperous at all. Care must be taken. Can the hinterlands be defended? The easiest, though
perhaps the longest way to overtake a city is to surround it and then wait for its citizens to starve.
What about the city location itself?
On the river, sea, or road itself there may be infrastructure, but if the city itself sits too near these
routes, the city may find itself hosting invader before their presence is even known. It is better to
go yet a little way away from them, so the danger is known if an enemy disembarks from the
normal route and begins to advance en mass upon the city.
It is worth noting here that the city shall, inevitably be vulnerable, no matter how secure she is.
Even her high walls make her visible, and the appearance upon the land of something so ancient now
other worldly shall make her an attractive vision, perhaps even an attractive target.
The hope is that nobody really understands the import until it is manifest. This is perhaps the third
thing that wasn't referenced in the title. Folks misunderstand, see it of little importance. Indeed the
very people who may have been called to it have failed to care for it. If its import is so
misunderstood by those who should know what they are called to, how long would it take for the
powers that be to understand it? An aspect of easily defendable land also has to do with land not
too many others want. If they do not want, do not value, then there is a strong possibility they shall
continue not to want and not to value until the city is well established and can defend itself.

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