Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Castles in Scotland

In the year 1066, William the Conqueror brought civilization to England.  I wish I could say he was French but actually, his grandfather was a Viking who settled in what is today northern France.  He became the Duke of Normandy.  Normans = Northmen (aka Vikings)  End of today's history lesson.

As part of "French" civilization, William built many stone castles.  I could talk about castles forever, but I'll just stick to the one that we saw in Scotland.  We were driving down the road after visiting Stirling Castle, when Ian saw a sign for Doune Castle.  We decided to take a chance and check it out.  It turned out to be an extremely wonderful decision.  Doune Castle is one of the best that I have ever seen.
It is not commercialized and looks very much like it did when it was occupied in the 14-15th centuries.  You can climb all the way up to the top of the castle on the original winding, spiral staircases and visit the duke and duchess' bedrooms, sitting rooms, great hall and the kitchens.  And, we discovered that the castle was the setting for the movie "Monty Python and the Holy Grail."  

Ian took some excellent photos of the castle interior.  This is a particularly good one of the great hall on the second floor - where the duke and duchess did their private entertaining.

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