Wednesday 17 April 2013

Castle #1

We have just recently joined Historic Scotland (similar to English Heritage in England and Cadw in Wales. Is there an equivalent in Northern Ireland?). This means we can go and visit lots of castles! We started on Monday which was the last day of the Easter holidays.

Looking at the photos I took though, you'd perhaps be excused from realising we were at a castle. This is because not much of the original castle is left, and much of what has replaced it is currently covered in scaffolding. However the location and situation were excellent - we had a good climb and excellent views. There was plenty to see and photograph, it would seem I was in texture study mode - lots of shots of different stonework, brickwork and peeling paint, in addition to the views, a hairy caterpillar and the odd flower.

So, where were we? The answer: Dumbarton Castle.

"From the 5th century AD until 1018, Dumbarton Rock was the capital of the British kingdom of Strathclyde. Legend tells of Merlin the magician staying at King Riderch’s court there in the 6th century. The Rock was besieged several times, but the Viking assault in 870 was by far the worst. After a four-month siege, Kings Olaf and Ivar of Dublin carried off the slaves and looted treasure in 200 longships."

"Substantial new artillery fortifications were built in the 17th and early 18th centuries. These are what the visitor sees today, for nothing survives from the Dark-Age fortress, and precious little from the medieval castle."

Here is a photo of how the garrison and rocks look from across the Clyde (and without scaffolding):-

Dumbarton Castle
  © Copyright Dave Hitchborne and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

There are 557 steps to climb to see all there is to see...


June said...

Some great photos here. Love the doors and windows shots but my very favourite has to be the silhouetted trees one.

Mereknits said...

Being from the US, I am in awe that you can visit a castle, oh the history you have, wow. Meredith

Anonymous said...

Again nice pics! We love castles, we visit one whenever we can. Amazing to imagine life in them.

Rosangela said...

Uau! Lindas, lindas fotos.
Um abraço.

Anonymous said...

Super shots, I particularly liked Robert the Bruce's moustache!

Rosemary said...

Some very artfully taken photos -lovely.

Unknown said...

That was great! Looking forward to more castle visits.

Mrs. Micawber said...

I too liked Robert the Bruce's moustache ... but his lady looks as though she were smelling something unpleasant. (Her hair looks awfully Tudor-period to me ... perhaps she was way ahead of her time.)

Love the shot through the round window, and the first ring in the wall photo, and the French Prison, and of course the spectacular trees!

(Don't the modern buildings look rather bright and jarring amidst all this softness of old stone?)

Gillian Roe said...

You have such a great eye for small details and you always capture them so well. x

Julie said...

We love out Historic Scotland membership. Great castle - we'll have to come west sometime. Juliex

SmallP said...

I have just discovered your blog. It's lovely. You have an amazing eye for photography. What camera do you use?


Claire said...

Love all the pics Anne, so much texture and pattern in the brick/stone walls.
Shame about those multi storey housing complexes.....they are such a blogton the skyline, but I guess people have to live somewhere.

CLaire :}

blueskyscotland said...

Hi Anne. Always been one of my favourite castles. Some lovely pictures as usual.
Now you've been You might be interested in this google site.
'Dumbarton rock and castle. Geograph Britain and Ireland.'
I only found out recently looking it up on the net the rock is just one link in a necklace of 60 volcanic plugs stretching over to the forth valley.
Makes you see the landscape in a whole new light once you know how many there are around you. I was walking about with a blindfold on before like most non geologists then when you know the truth its obvious where they all are. Most are round grassy hills now.
The 'Clyde Plateau Lavas'.
Worth a look.
Pretty interesting stuff.

Lyn said...

Oh gorgeous photos, love the window in the stone wall one the best if I just had to pick one! X


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