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Glenbuchat

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Glenbuchat
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Location Information
Name Glenbuchat
Owner ruins
NGR NJ 39716 14879
Lon. & Lat. 57.220694,-2.999796
Council Aberdeenshire
Parish Glenbuchat
Nearby Castles Migvie, Craig of Auchindoir, Knockespock, Terpersie
Year built 1590
Overview map
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Glenbuchat Castle is a Z-plan castle built for John Gordon of Cairnburrow, and Helen Carnegie, his wife, in 1590. Over the entrance doorway in the SW wing, is an inscription now illegible but recorded as reading “lohrn Gordone Helen Carnege 1590 Nothing On Earth Remains Bot Faime”. John Gordon of Cairnburrow was involved in the murder of the “Bonny Earl o’ Moray” at Donbristle in 1592 and his house of Glenbuchat was taken over and garrisoned by the royal forces during the rebellion of 1594. His sons Adam and John feel out over the inheritance in 1623, and Adam was later in dispute with his mother on the same matter, resulting in her being imprisoned at Glenbuchat for a month.


In 1701 it was bought by a different branch of the Gordon family and became the home of another John Gordon (of Knockespoch) who came to be known as 'Old Glenbucket' (an older spelling of Glenbuchat). He was a prominent supporter of the Jacobite cause and a hero of the Jacobite Risings of 1715 and 1745. John was imprisoned after the 1715 rebellion during which time he held the line of the Spey against the Duke of Sutherland until after the Earl of Mar and The Pretender fled abroad. Such was his infamy that he is said to have haunted the dreams of King George II. John became Baillie to the Duke of Gordon, and by 1738 the castle had been abandoned as the Gordon family home and was already partly unroofed when it was sold to the Lord Braco, Earl of Fife. John died in exile, in France, in 1750 after leading a regiment at Culloden in the 1745 rebellion.

The castle consists of a rectangular central tower with two square towers at diagonally opposing corners. There are two stair turrets that rise from the first floor level and are unusually supported by flying arches. The main entrance was protected by a wooden door that could only be opened if the iron yett (gate) behind it was opened first. There were cellars and a kitchen on the ground floor and the laird's hall and accommodation above. The interior was remodeled, probably soon after 1701, when the laird's hall was divided into two rooms and the ceiling lowered in order to fit in another floor above.

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