Thomas Docwra was one time captain of the castle. In 1522 when faced by attack from Sultan Suleiman, the Grand Master of the Hospitallers ordered the Castle to be repaired. In desperation, the Hospitallers broke open the Mausoleum, finding all sorts of elaboratedly adorned marble blocks and carvings which they admired but nevertheless destroyed, using the debris as building material. They also discovered the sarcophagus of Mausolus, but this was stolen during the night. The Knights Hospitaller were soon defeated and driven from Bodrum. Some decorative slabs have been found in the ruins of the Castle, one slab has turned up in Genoa.
In 1846 Lord Stratford de Redeliffe, the British Ambassador to Constantinople obtained permission to take twelve slabs showing a combat between Greeks and Amazons. Charles Newton conducted excavations and removed a number of stone lions in 1856. Presently, these are all to be found at the British Museum.