Fyvie Castle is a castle
A castle is a type of fortified structure built in Europe and the Middle East during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars debate the scope of the word castle, but usually consider it to be the private fortified residence of a lord or noble...
in the village of Fyvie
Fyvie is a village in the Formartine area of Aberdeenshire, Scotland.-Fyvie Castle:Fyvie Castle is reputed to have been built by King William the Lyon in the early thirteenth century...
, near Turriff
Turriff is a town and civil parish in Aberdeenshire in Scotland. It is approximately above sea level, and has a population of 5,708.Turriff is known locally as Turra in the Doric dialect of Scots...
Aberdeenshire is one of the 32 unitary council areas in Scotland and a lieutenancy area.The present day Aberdeenshire council area does not include the City of Aberdeen, now a separate council area, from which its name derives. Together, the modern council area and the city formed historic...
Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Occupying the northern third of the island of Great Britain, it shares a border with England to the south and is bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the...
The earliest parts of Fyvie Castle date from the 13th century - some sources claim it was built in 1211 by William the Lion. Fyvie was the site of an open-air court held by Robert the Bruce, and Charles I
Charles I of England
Charles I was King of England, King of Scotland, and King of Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649. Charles engaged in a struggle for power with the Parliament of England, attempting to obtain royal revenue whilst Parliament sought to curb his Royal prerogative which Charles...
lived there as a child. Following the Battle of Otterburn
Battle of Otterburn
The Battle of Otterburn took place on the 5 August 1388, as part of the continuing border skirmishes between the Scottish and English.The best remaining record of the battle is from Jean Froissart's Chronicles in which he claims to have interviewed veterans from both sides of the battle...
in 1390, it ceased to be a royal stronghold and instead fell into the possession of five successive families - Preston, Meldrum, Seton, Gordon and Leith - each of whom added a new tower to the castle. The oldest of these, the Preston tower (located on the far right as one faces the main facade of Fyvie), dates to between 1390 and 1433. The impressive Seton tower forms the entrance, and was erected in 1599 by Alexander Seton; Seton also commissioned the great processional staircase several years later. The Gordon tower followed in 1777, and the Leith in 1890.
Inside, the castle stronghold features a great wheel stair, a display of original arms and armour, and a particularly fine collection of portraits.
Manus O'Cahan's Regiment (English Civil War)
Manus O'Cahan's Regiment of Foot was a Scots Irish regiment which served during the Wars of the Three Kingdoms in the mid-1640s.- History :Manus O’Cahan’s Regiment of Foot was a body of Scots-Irish soldiers, many of who had fought in Europe in the early years of the Thirty Years War. Some...
James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose
James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose was a Scottish nobleman and soldier, who initially joined the Covenanters in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, but subsequently supported King Charles I as the English Civil War developed...
fought a successful minor battle against the Covenant Army at Fyvie Castle on October 28, 1644.
The Victorian era of British history was the period of Queen Victoria's reign from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901. It was a long period of peace, prosperity, refined sensibilities and national self-confidence...
trends, the grounds and adjoining Loch Fyvie were landscaped in the 19th century. The American industrialist Alexander Leith (later Alexander Forbes-Leith, 1st and last Baron Leith of Fyvie) bought the castle in 1885. It was sold to the National Trust for Scotland
National Trust for Scotland
The National Trust for Scotland for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty, commonly known as the National Trust for Scotland describes itself as the conservation charity that protects and promotes Scotland's natural and cultural heritage for present and future generations to...
in 1984 by his descendants.
The castle (like many Scottish castles) is said to be haunted. A story is told that in 1920 during renovation work the skeleton of a woman was discovered behind a bedroom wall. On the day the remains were laid to rest in Fyvie cemetery, the castle residents started to be plagued by strange noises and unexplained happenings. Fearing he had offended the dead woman, the Laird of the castle had the skeleton exhumed and replaced behind the bedroom wall, at which point the haunting ceased. It is said that there is a secret room in the south-west corner of the castle that must remain sealed, lest anyone entering meet with disaster. It's not clear if this is the same room in which the skeleton was found. There is also an indelible blood stain, two ghosts and two curses associated with this place. One of the curses has been attributed to the prophetic laird, Thomas the Rhymer
Thomas the Rhymer
Thomas Learmonth , better known as Thomas the Rhymer or True Thomas, was a 13th century Scottish laird and reputed prophet from Earlston . He is also the protagonist of the ballad "Thomas the Rhymer"...
Fyvie Castle has featured in a number of British television programmes, such as Living TV's Most Haunted
Most Haunted is a British paranormal documentary reality television series. The series was first shown on 25 May 2002 and ended on 21 July 2010. It was broadcast on Living and presented by Yvette Fielding. The programme was based on investigating purported paranormal activity...
season 6. and stv's Castles of Scotland.
The castle also played host of the setting of a children's gameshow on CBBC called Spook Squad
Spook Squad is a British children's television gameshow created by BBC Scotland. It ran on CBBC's section BBC1 and BBC2 from January 6, 2004, to March 30, 2004. The gameshow featured three children contestants entering a haunted castle in Scotland to assist Professor MacAbre in hunting ghosts...
2009 saw the publication of the children's fantasy novel, The Time-Tailor and the Fyvie Castle Witch Trials, written by Deborah Leslie.
Today, the castle is open to tourists during the summer months.