ENSEMBLE OF CONSTRUCTIVE TECHNIQUES IN THE CASTLE OF RICOTE (MURCIA, SPAIN)
The Castle of Ricote, also known as Los Peñascales, is a fortification on a steep hill of the Ricote Valley overlooking the Vega Media of the Segura River, to the east, and the village of Ricote to the west. According to written sources, the history of this castle dates back from the ninth century. However, its military and administrative weight persisted even after the Christian conquest, when it became the headquarters of the Order of Santiago, until the fifteenth century. Despite its poor state of repair, the use of the castle overtime can be established on the site by means of a rather complex sequence of phases and a very heterogeneous set of construction techniques. Although it has been hard to accomplish a complete analysis, in this paper we have attempted a stratigraphic analysis and a synthesis of the techniques used in the medieval interventions, which are highly relevant due to their diversity and special features. Among them, the following have been covered: stonework with lime mortar built through shuttering, rammed earth, and lime-crusted rammed earth. In addition, the two main phases detected, and their respective techniques will also be underlined, since they are present consistently throughout the whole castle.