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A wicket gate, or simply a wicket, is a pedestrian door or gate, particularly one built into a larger door or into a wall or fence.


Use in fortifications

Wickets are typically small, narrow doors either alongside or within a larger castle or city gate. The latter were often double gates, large and heavy, designed to allow the passage of wagons, coaches and horsemen. The purpose of wickets was to avoid the risk of having to open the main gates to the castle or city for just one or two individuals on foot. Because the wicket was only one person wide, it only allowed entry one at a time and enabled the guards to better control access. In the
Middle Ages In the history of Europe The history of Europe concerns itself with the discovery and collection, the study, organization and presentation and the interpretation of past events and affairs of the people of Europe since the beginning of ...
the narrow doors in the
city wall A defensive wall is a fortification A fortification is a military A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare. It is typically officially authorize ...

city wall
s also enabled late arrivals to gain entry after the main gates had been closed. If the small entrance in the door of a large
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gate
has a high threshold, it may be called a manway. If it is a separate, narrow entrance next to the main gate, it may be called a pedestrian entrance. This type of double entrance is rather uncommon, however, and was only worth having at large sites where there was a lot of coming and going. It is found, for example, at the castle of , the
Hochburg The Hochburg ("high castle") is a castle ruin situated between the city of Emmendingen and the village of Sexau in the region of Baden, located in the southwest of Germany. It was presumably built in the 11th century and was originally known as cas ...
in
Emmendingen Emmendingen is a town in Baden-Württemberg, capital of the Emmendingen (district), district Emmendingen of Germany. It is located at the Elz (Rhine), Elz River, north of Freiburg im Breisgau. The town contains more than 26,000 residents, which ...
, the
Electoral Cologne The Electorate of Cologne (german: Kurfürstentum Köln), sometimes referred to as Electoral Cologne (german: Kurköln, links=no), was an Hochstift, ecclesiastical principality of the Holy Roman Empire that existed from the 10th to the early 19th ...
castle of Friedestrom and at Schaunberg Castle in
Austria Austria (, ; german: Österreich ), officially the Republic of Austria (german: Republik Österreich, links=no, ), is a landlocked Eastern Alps, East Alpine country in the southern part of Central Europe. It is composed of nine States o ...

Austria
. The narrow side entrance could be protected by its own
drawbridge A drawbridge or draw-bridge is a type of moveable bridge A moveable bridge, or movable bridge, is a bridge A bridge is a structure A structure is an arrangement and organization of interrelated elements in a material object or system ...

drawbridge
and sometimes even opened into a gate passage separated from the main one as, for example, at
Hohenwang Castle Hohenwang is a ruined castle in Municipality of Langenwang, Styria Styria (german: Steiermark ; Croatian and sl, ; hu, Stájerország, Austro-Bavarian: ''Steiamoak'') is a state (''Bundesland'') in the southeast of Austria Austria ...
. The wickets in main gates that were easily visible should not be confused with the small, hidden
sally port A sally port is a secure, controlled entry way to an enclosure, e.g., a fortification or prison. The entrance is usually protected by some means, such as a fixed wall on the outside, parallel to the door, which must be circumvented to enter and ...

sally port
s in the walls of
castle A castle is a type of fortification, fortified structure built during the Middle Ages predominantly by the nobility or royalty and by Military order (monastic society), military orders. Scholars debate the scope of the word ''castle'', but u ...

castle
s and
fortification A fortification is a military construction or building designed for the defense of territories in warfare, and is also used to establish rule in a region during peacetime. The term is derived from Latin ''fortis'' ("strong") and ''facere'' ( ...

fortification
s. These small openings were used in times of
siege A siege is a military blockade of a city, or fortress, with the intent of conquering by attrition, or a well-prepared assault. This derives from la, sedere, lit=to sit. Siege warfare is a form of constant, low-intensity conflict characteri ...

siege
to escape to carry out military raids.


Other uses

A wicket gate is also used for a stand-alone gate that provides convenient secondary access, for example to the rear of a walled park or
garden A garden is a planned space, usually outdoors, set aside for the cultivation, display, and enjoyment of plants and other forms of nature. The single feature identifying even the wildest wild garden A wildlife garden (or wild garden) is an Bioph ...
. The
cricket Cricket is a Bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players each on a cricket field, field at the centre of which is a cricket pitch, pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two Bail (cricket), bai ...

cricket
term "
wicket In cricket Cricket is a Bat-and-ball games, bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players each on a cricket field, field at the centre of which is a cricket pitch, pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two Bai ...

wicket
" comes from this usage. "The Wicket Gate" is an important feature in
John Bunyan John Bunyan (; baptised 30 November 162831 August 1688) was an English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early m ...

John Bunyan
's 17th-century Christian
allegory As a literary device A narrative technique (known for literary fiction Literary fiction is a term used in the book-trade to distinguish novels that are regarded as having literary merit, from most commercial or "genre" fiction. However, the b ...

allegory
''
The Pilgrim's Progress ''The Pilgrim's Progress from This World, to That Which Is to Come'' is a 1678 Christianity, Christian allegory written by John Bunyan. It is regarded as one of the most significant works of religious, theological fiction in English literature. ...
''. As the first stage of the journey of Christian to the Celestial City, it is the entrance to the King's Highway. Bunyan's idea being to illustrate Jesus's dictum, "Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few." ().


See also

*
Lock (water transport) A lock is a device used for raising and lowering boat A boat is a watercraft Watercraft, also known as water vessels or waterborne vessels, are vehicles A vehicle (from la, vehiculum) is a machine A machine is any physica ...

Lock (water transport)
*
Penstock A penstock is a sluice or floodgate, gate or intake structure that controls water flow, or an enclosed pipe that delivers water to hydro turbines and sanitary sewer, sewerage systems. The term is inherited from the earlier technology of mill ...
*
Stile A stile is a structure or opening that provides people passage over or through a boundary via step Step or Steps may refer to: General * Stairs * Walking * Dance move, the building block of many dances * Military step, a regular, ordered and ...

Stile
*
Turnstile A turnstile (also called a turnpike, gateline, baffle gate, automated gate, turn gate in some regions) is a form of gate Candi bentar, a typical Indonesian gate that is often found on the islands of Java">Indonesia.html" ;"title="Candi ben ...

Turnstile


References

Heinrich August Pierer (Hrsg.): ''Universal-Lexikon, oder vollständiges encyclopädisches Wörterbuch''. Band 20. Literatur-Comptoir, Altenburg, 1835, pp. 5–6
online
.
F.-W. Krahe: ''Burgen des deutschen Mittelalters. Grundrisslexikon'', p. 24. F.-W. Krahe: ''Burgen und Wohntürme des deutschen Mittelalters'', p. 28. Walter Hotz: ''Kleine Kunstgeschichte der deutschen Burg''. 5th edn. Komet, Frechen, 1991, , S. 48. O. Piper: ''Burgenkunde'', p. 300. Horst Wolfgang Böhme, Reinhard Friedrich,
Barbara Schock-Werner Barbara Schock-Werner (born 23 July 1947, Ludwigsburg Ludwigsburg () is a city A city is a large .Goodall, B. (1987) ''The Penguin Dictionary of Human Geography''. London: Penguin.Kuper, A. and Kuper, J., eds (1996) ''The Social Science Enc ...
: ''Wörterbuch der Burgen, Schlösser und Festungen''. Reclam, Stuttgart, 2004, , p. 70.


Literature

* Friedrich-Wilhelm Krahe: ''Burgen des deutschen Mittelalters. Grundrisslexikon''. Flechsig, Würzburg, 2000, , p. 24. * Friedrich-Wilhelm Krahe: ''Burgen und Wohntürme des deutschen Mittelalters''. Thorbecke, Stuttgart, 2002, , p. 28. *
Otto Piper Otto Piper (1841–1921) was a German architectural historian who, with August von Cohausen (1812–1896), is regarded as one of the two founders of scientific research into castles. Life Otto Piper was born on 22 December 1841 in Röckwitz, the ...
: ''Burgenkunde''. Reprint of the 3rd edition of 1912. Weltbild, Augsburg 1994, {{ISBN, 3-89350-554-7, p. 300. Castle architecture Doors Garden features Types of gates