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Auchindoun Castle

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

This edition is copyright © The Editors of the Gazetteer for Scotland, 2002-2016.

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Auchindoun, a ruined castle on the left side of Glen Fiddich, in Mortlach parish, Banffshire, 2½ miles SE of Dufftown. Massive and three-storied, it crowns a steep limestone rock, at least 200 feet high, which is washed on three sides by the Fiddich, and on the fourth is guarded by a moat; within it contains a noble Gothic hall, its vaulted roof upborne on fluted pillars. Supposed to date from the 11th century, it is said to have been rebuilt by the ` mason ' Cochrane, James III. 's minion, who was hanged over Lander Bridge in 1482; and to have passed from the Ogilvies to the Gordons about 1535. Sir Adam Gordon of Auchindoun, sixth son of the fourth Earl of Huntly, defeated the Forbeses at the Craibstane in 1571, and afterwards burned the castle of Towie; his brother and successor, Sir Patrick, was one of the signers of the ` Spanish blanks ' in 1592, and was slain at Glenlivet, 4 Oct. 1594. The ballad that tells how Auchindoun was burned by Willie Macintosh, about 1544 or 1670 (both dates have been given, with tragical and circumstantial details), seems not to rest on any firmer basis than does that of ` Fair Helen of Auchintoul; ' we only know that somewhere about 200 years have passed since last the castle was inhabited. Queen Mary rode by it in 1562; and in 1867 Queen Victoria picnicked on the opposite bank with the Duke of Richmond and Gordon, owner of all the old barony of Auchindoun. See chap. iii. of James Brown's Round Table Club (Elgin, 1873).

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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