Duffus Castle

Scotland.  Day 3, 1st July.

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Óengus or Angus, Mormaer or Earl of Moray, grandson of Lulach, son of MacBeth, rebelled against King David I in 1130 and the rebellion was crushed.  This led to the building of the original Duffus Castle by Hugh de Freskyn who received the lands of Óengus.  As shown above, this was a a wooden motte and bailey castle.  The motte is a large raised mound that the castle sits on and the bailey is another raised area for the supporting buildings, but not raised nearly as much.  The bailey comprised “ancillary lodgings and offices, including bakehouse, brewhouse, stables, workshops, perhaps even an outer hall and chapel”.

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In 1297, the wooden castle held a garrison of the English troops of Edward I until Andrew Moray descended on it and burnt it down.  This led to the stone replacement castle, built in the early 1300s.  It was built on the old motte which proved, probably quite early on, to not be a substantial foundation.  Part of the main keep broke off and fell down the slope, as you can see in the background above.

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Ferns growing on the castle wall.

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Looking along the wall up the motte to the keep, from beside one of the gates to the bailey.

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The motte and keep from the bailey with a contemporary contingent of guards.

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After 1760 the castle had become unsuitable for habitation and thereafter it fell into ruin.

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There has been some major subsidence here, yet at the time they patched the castle up and continued using it.  You can also see this window in the image above.

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This looks down on the part of the keep that fell away.  Where the plaque in the wall is indicates that there was a toilet there.  Whether anyone was sitting on the loo at the time it became airborne is not recorded.  “This toilet was originally placed on the upper floor adjacent to the lord’s hall, but has come to rest in this awkward position following major subsidence problems”.

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This is a view inside the keep, though with perspective distorted by an extreme wide angle panorama (assembling multiple images).  The holes in the walls are for huge beams over ten metres long that supported the upper floor.

7 comments on “Duffus Castle

  1. Dugutigui says:

    Beautiful pictures!

    Like

  2. leecleland says:

    The Scottish do ruined castles very well and they are to our Ozzie eyes just soooo photogenic. Enjoying this re-run of your trip with dialogue immensely,

    Like

  3. excellent set Murray

    Like

  4. […] Earls and Dukes of Sutherland.  The first earl was the great grandson of Hugh de Freskyn who built Duffus Castle, so there is a family connnection from there.  There would have been a castle here from 1235, the […]

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