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posted 08-26-2000 04:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for EN_RAZU   Click Here to Email EN_RAZU     Edit/Delete Message
Castle Dunvegan is situated on the isle of skye and has been in part of the Clan Macleod for around eight hundred years. I looked up their web site but it is only a tourist site... Can any body give me some more information about the castle and or it's history.

posted 08-26-2000 03:54 PM           Edit/Delete Message
From Martin Coventry, the Castles of Scotland 2nd ed.

'Continuously occupied by the chiefs of Macleod since 1270, Dunvegan Castle consists of a massive 14th century keep, a 15th century tower-the Fairy Tower-and a joining hall block from the 17th century. The castle was surrounded by a curtain wall. Further ranges were added in the 1680's and later. The castle was remodelled, and given ornamental bartizans and modern battlements in the 19th century.
It was a property of the Macleods from the 13th century. The castle is the home of the Fairy Flag, reputedly given to one of the chiefs by his fairy wife. The flag is supposed to give victory to the Clan Macleod, whenever unfurled, reputed to have done so at the battles of Glendale in 1490, and Trumpan, after the MacDonalds had slaughtered many of the Macleods in the church there, in 1580-however it may actually have been captured from a Saracen on Crusade. It was also said to have made the marriages of the Macleods fruitful when draped on the nuptial bed, and to charm the herrings in the Loch when unfurled.
Another interesting item is a drinking horn, holding several pints, which the heir of the Macleods had to empty in one go. There are many mementoes of Bonnie Prince Charlie.'
See also: http://scottishculture.about.com/culture/scottishculture/library/blcastlesd.htm http://www.phys.canterbury.ac.nz/~physdpm/clan.html

'Give me the groves that lofty brave,
The storms, by Castle Gordon'.
Visit my web-site at


[This message has been edited by wurdsmiff (edited 08-26-2000).]

posted 08-27-2000 11:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Levan   Click Here to Email Levan     Edit/Delete Message
Dunvegan Castle has been making the national news just recently. One television report did quite a decent tour and potted outline of the castle's history.

It seems that Dunvegan is rapidly falling into disrepair and the owners are trying to sell the Cullin mountains in order to finance the work required. Snag is, the people of Skye dispute the claim that the MacLeods actually own the mountains.

Dunvegan is a wonderful sight, it's a shame that some other way can't be found of restoring and protecting the castle. Dunvegan is one of the few examples that hasn't been restored from ruin and despite being extensive remodelled dring the Georgian era doesn't seem to have been 'ruined' by inappropriate alterations! Personally, I see no problem with buildings that 'evolve' with the times - providing the work done is executed well (sadly, it usually isn't). Failure or inability to evolve is probably the main reason that the majority of Scottish castles ceased to be useful as residences and thus fall into ruin and provided a suitable pile for plundering for other 'new' building works. Further thoughts on the evolution of individual castles might make a good topic for discussion?

An excellent book that covers some of the ancestral history of Dunvegan (about six pages inc pics) and several other continually inhabited castles is:

Ancestral Castles of Scotland by Hugh Cantile. Photos in this book are stunning.

The book is not really a reference work (you can probably contact Dunvegan itself for their 'official' booklet for this) but it certainly captures the key elements of the castle's history that contribute to its overal atmosphere.


[This message has been edited by Levan (edited 08-27-2000).]

posted 08-28-2000 01:17 PM           Edit/Delete Message
Yes, my understanding from a recent broadcast is that the documentation held by the MacLeod stood up to examination, and that the Cullins are indeed up for sale. Macleod himself was interviewed and went on record as saying that his favoured outcome would be a sale to the national Trust for Scotland, even appealing to the government to provide a special grant in order that public access be maintained for the nation.
your suggested topic for discussion certainly raises a few points. From my own point of view I tend to find mansionised castles, which destroy the original structure beyond recognition, of little interest, though the history of the former building attracts. I much prefer surviving structures such as Levan where the original structures remain prominent or intact, and available for study.
The Georgians and Victorians had differing values to my own, where their drive for comfort and displays of affluence overcame any sentimentality over the original structure, although the Victorians had a taste for the romantic side of things and created their own 'castles'alluding to these notions. Living in a castle also improved their social standing, it was a status symbol fashionable at that time.

'Give me the groves that lofty brave,
The storms, by Castle Gordon'.
Visit my web-site at


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