Eilean Donan Castle

Eilean Donan Castle

The presence of a vitrified fort was recorded on Eilean Donan island in 1912, though the nature of any early fortification is uncertain. In the 13th century, a large curtain-wall castle (wall of enceinte) was constructed. At this time the area was at the boundary of the Norse-Celtic Lordship of the Isles and the Earldom of Ross: Eilean Donan provided a strong defensive position against Norse expeditions. By the late 13th century it had become a stronghold of the Mackenzies of Kintail (later the Earls of Seaforth), who were vassals of the Earls of Ross. A tower house or keep was built at the north-east corner in the 14th century, and in the 15th century a smaller defensive enclosure. Having lost control in the 14th century, the Mackenzies obtained a charter of Eilean Donan in 1509, and in 1511 the Macraes, as protectors of the Mackenzies, became the hereditary Constables of the castle.

In 1539 Iain Dubh Matheson, chief of the Clan Matheson, died while defending the castle against the Clan MacDonald of Sleat on behalf of Clan Macrae and Clan Mackenzie.

Information based on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eilean_Donan_Castle#Eilean_Donan_castle