Aberdour Castle

Mary, Queen of Scots Home Page

Standing in the picturesque village of Aberdour, the large castle consists of a ruinous 14th century keep and ranges of buildings, dating from later centuries, one of which is still roofed and contains a gallery on the first floor. A terraced garden has been restored, and there is also a fine walled garden.
Aberdour was a property of the Mortimer family. The stretch of water between the island of Inch Colm and Aberdour is known as "Mortimer's Deep". One of the family was a wicked fellow, but wished to be buried at the abbey on Inch Colm. His remains were on their way to the island, but were cast overboard there, either because of a storm raised from the wrath of God, or because the Abbot did not want a man such as Mortimer buried on Inch Colm.
The castle was in the possession of Thomas Randolph, a friend and captain of Robert the Bruce, in 1325; but by 1342 had passed to the Douglases. James Douglas, 4th Earl of Morton, held the castle in the 16th century. Morton was implicated in the murder of Rizzio, the Secretary of Mary, Queen of Scots, and of Darnley, her second husband. He escaped severe punishment at the time, and in 1572 was made Regent for the young James VI. In 1580, however, the Earl's plotting finally caught up with him, and James VI had him executed.
A view of the back with the gardens and dovecote below overlooking the Forth Estuary. Much of the castle was abandoned in 1725 when the family moved to nearby Aberdour House, although part was used as barracks, then school room, masonic hall and dwelling until 1924.
Open all year but not Thursdays pm and Fridays from October to March. Tel.: 44+ (0)1383 860519.

Back to more places