Castles Of Scotland

Castles Of Scotland

Castles have long been a historical and cultural symbols of Scotland. Almost every travel booklet on Scotland, you can see their colorful photos and advertising and educational tours. On the territory of today’s Scotland there are about 3000 objects that fall under the description as a lock, since this term covers a wide range of different types of individual buildings and large complexes.

After a thousand-year historical way, most locks have undergone many changes. Some are less fortunate, and today they are ruins. Others managed to survive in reasonable condition, having gradually turned into either museums or hotels. Several have become iconic tourist attractions, through which the year passes by several tens of thousands of visitors. In any, even in the most remote corner of Scotland, be sure to see the castle, which will offer guests a unique opportunity to touch the past. Walk the narrow spiral staircase to dine to the sounds of bagpipes in the Parade Hall, as did the noble Lords, or even stay in the apartments in which in the distant past has hosted famous royals such as Queen Mary Stuart. And (where possible) to climb the walls and towers to enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding natural landscape.

The most part, the extant Scottish castles was founded in the XIII – XIV centuries, when it replaced the wooden fortifications came buildings of stone. Therefore, the official history of the many castles is counted even from earlier times when they were erected their wooden predecessors.

In the XV century in Scotland the spread of the so-called tower houses residential towers. They had thick walls and small Windows. The tops of the towers were crowned with battlements, served as a shelter in repelling the attack for the defenders. Often these buildings had no entrance from the ground floor level, but only temporary wooden stairs leading directly to the second floor. When the enemy attacked they naturally cleaned.

Later in the sixteenth century the development of artillery, such locks have undergone several changes. At lower levels there were embrasures for the guns, while the upper floors have lost traditional teeth. And yet gradually, the castles began to lose their defensive value, becoming landlord of the residence. At the end of XVIII century after the last Jacobite rebellion the Scottish nobility, no longer wished to live in uncomfortable dwellings “barbaric times”. There comes a time of new transformations. Old loopholes or sealed, or expanded to large Windows on the ground floors appear main entrances. At the same time to be built and many new and elegant houses. The old locks are left to fend for themselves.

The last stage in the emergence of Scottish castles, was the middle of the XIX century. The impetus for this was the following event. In 1842 Queen Victoria and Prince albert visited the North-East Scotland. On this trip they all liked that after they decided to purchase a small local Balmoral castle, situated in the valley of the river Dee. Since purchased home did not meet the size needs of the Royal family, for three years on its place, a shiny new castle. In subsequent years, when the Queen was being held here in the summer months a long time, many of her confidants started to build near their own estates, often copying the style of Balmoral castle, with its graceful turrets. Later in the 40-50 th years of XX century, most of the owners of such castles sold them under the hotels today offer guests comfortable accommodation.

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