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Castle of Rattray

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Source: Rcbutcher

Copyright: CC 3.0

The Castle of Rattray was a medieval Scottish castle, with multiple variations on its structure over approximately six centuries. Originally built as a "late 12th- or early 13th century defensive motte" it provided protection for Starny Keppie harbour and Rattray village. Sometime between 1214 and 1233 it was upgraded by William Comyn, jure uxoris Earl of Buchan before being destroyed in the 1308 Harrying of Buchan. After Comyn's timber castle was burned down it was replaced by a stronger stone castle which was engulfed during a 1720 sand storm along with nearby Rattray village. After the storm, the castle was not dug out and remains covered to this day. The castle was described by W. Douglas Simpson as one of the nine castles of the Knuckle, referring to the rocky headland of north-east Aberdeenshire.
The castle was sited on Castlehill, on the south bank of the now closed estuary flowing into Strathbeg Bay- the north bank was protected by the opposite Lonmay Castle. Specifically the castle was "beside an inlet which led from the sea into a sheltered harbour" on "the harbour side" of Rattray village. The later stone castle is known to have had a "harbour-side entrance".


Copyright: CC 3.0

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