Following the Norman Invasion that took place in the 12th century, castles became a commonplace fixture throughout Scotland. To this day, the medieval castle architecture of the country is something to be admired. Typical features of Scottish castles include sweeping towers made out of stone and massive walls. In this article, you will learn about two medieval castles in Scotland with a haunted past.
Scottish castles built during the medieval days were usually positioned near natural bodies of water, on top of hills, and close to important trade crossroads. During the late 13th and early 14th centuries, soldiers manned the castles around the same time the Wars of Independence took place. Two interesting castles in Scotland are believed to house ghosts on the premises.
Corgarff Castle was actually a typical fort of a small size that was used to protect the defending army when enemies attempted an attack. The castle has a history that traces back to the infamous William Wallace (of ‘Braveheart’ fame). Before the warrior was born, the Scottish king, Alexander III took a lovely young woman as his bride. However, an odd occurrence took place during the wedding celebration.
It is said that a skeleton actually took to the dance floor and made itself known to the guests. The king’s interest was piqued and he longed to catch sight of the ghost, but never got a chance to see for himself. Two months had passed and the king gathered at the castle to have a reunion to chat about upcoming military strategies. It was dark when the king decided to return home that night. The King and his horse fell into a large abyss, where he instantly died. Without any heirs to take over, this is how the War of Independence is said to have begun.
Eilean Donan Castle
As one of the most romantic castles in the world, Eilean Donan Castle possesses a deep history that started during the reign of King Alexander II, who built the castle as a way to defend his rule against the raids of 13th century Viking. When Scotland was at its most violent times, the castle was a strong fortress that endured many years of battle.
Upgrades were implemented, including the construction of the Keep In the North East corner of the wall. Eventually, the castle became the stronghold of the McKinsey Earls of Seaforth, but destruction came in the 18th century when English frigates attacked the castle following the actions of the Jacobite 5th Earl who placed a Spanish garrison in the castle. Government warships in 1719 reduced the castle to a less than desirable state, leaving it abandoned and in ruin.
In the 1900s, the castle underwent a transformation as restorations took place. It became the seat of the Clan MacRae, and also received Hollywood recognition with a guest spot in the original “Highlander” movie. It is said that the ghost of one of the Spanish soldiers who lost his life during the attack on the castle is believed to haunt the premises. Witnesses claim that he’s a gruesome sight, wandering about the castle carrying his head tucked under his arm.