Eilean Donan 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.

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Castle-Donnan, a fine old ruined castle in Kintail parish, SW Ross-shire, in the immediate vicinity of Dornie village. Given by Alexander III., after the battle of Largs, to Colin Fitzgerald, it has long been in a state of ruin.

Ellandonan, a small rocky island, crowned by a ruined, ivy-clad, ancient castle, in Kintail parish, Rossshire, at the forking of Loch Alsh into Lochs Long and Duich, 8 ½ miles E of Kyle Akin. The castle presents a picturesque appearance, backed by a noble range of hills. Occupying the site of a Caledonian vitrified -fort, it is said to have been given in 1266 to Colin Fitzgerald, son of the Earl of Desmond, and to have been the scene in 1331 of a severe act of retributive justice by Randolph, Earl of Moray, then warden of Scotland, who executed in it fifty delinquents, and ranged their heads round its walls. Certain it is that it was long a stronghold of the Mackenzies of Kintail, and that it sustained in 1539 a famous attack b Donald Gorm, a claimant to the lordship of the Isles, whose assault on it cost him his life, and is celebrated in a ballad by Colin Mackenzie in Scott's Border Minstrelsy. In 1719 it was garrisoned by a Spanish force under William Mackenzie, fifth Earl of Seaforth, with the Earl Marischal and the Marquis of Tullibardine; but three English ships-ofwar soon battered its rude square tower to pieces, and its defenders retired to GLENSHIEL.

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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