March 9th, 2018 || (March 14th, 2018)
Hello everybody! I’m sorry I haven’t posted in a while. I spent most of the past two days flying back to Philadelphia while feeling very under the weather and now I’m terribly jet lagged. However, I wanted to make sure I posted this blog update by the end of the day today. I hope you enjoy!
Over the course of my travels, I’ve seen a lot of different castle ruins I thought it would be appropriate to write a small bit about some of the castles I’ve seen since they all hold important aspects about the general history of Ireland.
Castle Dunluce is now a ruined medieval castle located in Northern Ireland. The first known residents were the McQuillan family in 1513. However, the McQuillans lost possession of the castle after suffering two defeats in a series of battles against the MacDonnell and MacDonald Clans. However, it was the MacDonald Clan that eventually took full control of the castle. According to a local legend, the castle was later abandoned because the kitchen broke off of the main castle and fell into the sea during the 17th century. Although, this legend was disproven by archaeologists who believe that the kitchen didn’t collapse until the 18th century.
Castle Donegal was built by Red Hugh O’Donnell in 1474. Castle Donegal was also considered one of the best Gaelic castles in Ireland. However, after the Nine Years war in 1607, the leaders of O’Donnell Clan fled Ireland during the Flight of the Earls and the castle was awarded to English Captain, Basil Brooke in 1611. The Brooke renovated and improved the castle greatly by adding several windows and a large manor-house, but the family later sold the castle to the Gore family in the 1670s. The once great castle fell into ruin under the Gore family in the 18th Century.
Castle Ward & Audley’s Castle:
Castle Ward was originally owned by Earls of Kildare, but it was bought by Bernard Ward during the 1570s. The Ward family then built a series of homes on their estate including Old Castle Ward (1590) and the property’s mansion (1720). During this expansion, the Ward family also purchased Audley’s Castle in 1646. These historic sites have become increasingly popular due to HBO’s Game of Thrones television series. Castle Ward was the filming site for Winterfell, home of the Stark family on the show, and Audley’s Castle continues to be an active set for the Twins, home of the Frey family and location of the Red Wedding.