Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Huntingtower Castle, Scotland

Huntingtower Castle was originally known as Ruthven Castle, built in stages by the Ruthven family in the 15th century near Perth, the center of Scotland. 

In the summer of 1582, Lord Ruthven was involved in a plot to kidnap young King James VI, son of Mary, Queen of Scots. They held the lad as a prisoner for ten months. Through the "Raid of Ruthven" Protestant leaders hoped to gain power by controlling the king, who managed to escape. The king forgave Lord Ruthven, but he made the mistake of a second attempt at which time he was executed and his property forfeited to the crown.  

The lands were eventually restored to the Ruthven family, but in 1600, two Ruthven brothers plotted to kill King VI again. Both were executed and the name Ruthven abolished. No succeeding heirs could hold titles and the castle was renamed Huntingtower Castle by royal proclamation. 

The property remained in the hands of the crown until it was given to the family of Murray of Tullibardine in 1643. John Murray, 1st Duke of Athol resided in the castle in 1717 with his wife, Lady Mary Ross. 

Huntingtower Castle is now managed by Historic Scotland and open to the public for visitation. 


Sources:
Castles of England, Scotland and Wales by Paul Johnson.
The Free Encyclopedia of Wikipedia.
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