Eilean Donan Castle

Eilean Donan is a small island in Loch Duich in the western Highlands of Scotland. It is connected to the mainland by a footbridge and lies about half a mile from the village of Dornie. Eilean Donan (which means simply "island of DonnĂ¡n") is dominated by a picturesque castle founded in the 13th century, but was destroyed in the 18th century. Eilean Donan Castle is the home of the Clan Macrae.

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Eilean Donan Castle # 0001

This romantic castle was built in 1214 as a defense against the Danes. In ruins for 200 years, it was restored by Colonel MacRae, of Clan MacRae, in 1932 and is now a clan war memorial and museum, containing Jacobite relics, mostly with clan connections.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0004

Eilean Donan Castle was rebuilt in the years between 1919 and 1932 by Lt. Col. John MacRae-Gilstrap. The restoration included the construction of an arched bridge to give easier access to the castle. In 1983 The Conchra Charitable Trust was formed by the Macrae family to care for the castle. A curious distinction is that it has one of only two left-handed spiral staircases in a castle in Great Britain, as the reigning king at the time of building held a sword with his left hand.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0015

Eilean Donan Castle was rebuilt in the years between 1919 and 1932 by Lt. Col. John MacRae-Gilstrap. The restoration included the construction of an arched bridge to give easier access to the castle. In 1983 The Conchra Charitable Trust was formed by the Macrae family to care for the castle. A curious distinction is that it has one of only two left-handed spiral staircases in a castle in Great Britain, as the reigning king at the time of building held a sword with his left hand.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0029

Eilean Donan Castle was rebuilt in the years between 1919 and 1932 by Lt. Col. John MacRae-Gilstrap. The restoration included the construction of an arched bridge to give easier access to the castle. In 1983 The Conchra Charitable Trust was formed by the Macrae family to care for the castle. A curious distinction is that it has one of only two left-handed spiral staircases in a castle in Great Britain, as the reigning king at the time of building held a sword with his left hand.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0006

Eilean Donan Castle provided a strong defensive position against Norse expeditions. By the late 13th century it had become a stronghold of the Mackenzies of Kintail (later the Earls of Seaforth) who were vassals of the Earls of Ross. A tower house or keep was built at the north-east corner in the 14th century, and in the 15th century a smaller defensive enclosure.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0025

In 1539 Iain Dubh Matheson, chief of the Clan Matheson, died whilst defending the castle against the Clan MacDonald of Sleat on behalf of Clan Macrae and Clan Mackenzie.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0027

In 1539 Iain Dubh Matheson, chief of the Clan Matheson, died whilst defending the castle against the Clan MacDonald of Sleat on behalf of Clan Macrae and Clan Mackenzie.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 0031

Following the failure of the Jacobite rising of 1715, the Jacobites, supporters of the exiled James Stuart, the "Old Pretender", sought new support from Spain. An advance party of 300 Spanish soldiers arrived in Loch Duich in April 1719, and occupied Eilean Donan Castle. The expected uprising of Highlanders did not occur, and the main Spanish invasion force never arrived.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 4153

Following the failure of the Jacobite rising of 1715, the Jacobites, supporters of the exiled James Stuart, the "Old Pretender", sought new support from Spain. An advance party of 300 Spanish soldiers arrived in Loch Duich in April 1719, and occupied Eilean Donan Castle. The expected uprising of Highlanders did not occur, and the main Spanish invasion force never arrived.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 4159

Following the failure of the Jacobite rising of 1715, the Jacobites, supporters of the exiled James Stuart, the "Old Pretender", sought new support from Spain. An advance party of 300 Spanish soldiers arrived in Loch Duich in April 1719, and occupied Eilean Donan Castle. The expected uprising of Highlanders did not occur, and the main Spanish invasion force never arrived.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 4173

Early in the morning of Sunday 10 May, HMS Worcester, HMS Flamborough, and HMS Enterprise, anchored off Eilean Donan, and sent a boat ashore under a flag of truce to negotiate. When the Spanish soldiers in the castle fired at the boat, it was recalled and all three ships opened fire on the castle for an hour or more. The next day the bombardment continued while a landing party was prepared.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 4184

Early in the morning on Sunday 10 May, HMS Worcester, HMS Flamborough, and HMS Enterprise, anchored off Eilean Donan, and sent a boat ashore under a flag of truce to negotiate. When the Spanish soldiers in the castle fired at the boat, it was recalled and all three ships opened fire on the castle for an hour or more. The next day the bombardment continued while a landing party was prepared.
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 4192

In the evening, under the cover of an intense cannonade, the ships' boats went ashore and captured the castle against little resistance. According to HMS Worcester's log, in the castle they found "an Irishman, a captain, a Spanish lieutenant, a sergeant, one Scots rebel and 39 Spanish soldiers, 343 barrels of powder and 52 barrels of musquet shot".
© Allan Bell

Eilean Donan Castle # 5399

In the evening, under the cover of an intense cannonade, the ships' boats went ashore and captured the castle against little resistance. According to HMS Worcester's log, in the castle they found "an Irishman, a captain, a Spanish lieutenant, a sergeant, one Scots rebel and 39 Spanish soldiers, 343 barrels of powder and 52 barrels of musquet shot".
© Allan Bell

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