Jan. 31st, 2012

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I'm no good at embedding videos etcetera in my LJ posts, but...

Here's a little song I'd like to dedicate to Fred Goodwin, who fell foul of the Forfeiture Committee this afternoon...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bFaee49YjMw

Now, why can't they go the whole hog and have him a) put to the horn; b) subject to letters of fire and sword, and c) have all his goods and property seized by the Crown???

P.S. If they give you a feed into the same advert as I got when I tried out the link, then you should enjoy it for its irony value.  I got the Bank of Scotland!!  Heston, Goodwin...  They're all tarred with the same brush!!
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On a lighter note...

To Dundonald Castle now, and I've a terrible admission to make.

I haven't got the guidebook for this site.  And though I thought I had the volume of the Scottish Archaeological Journal which detailed the recent excavations at Dundonald Castle, I was wrong, so the information I have is minimal.

One thing is certain.  It's built on the site of an earlier defensive site, a hillfort of early medieval (aka Dark Age...) date which probably has its origins in the Iron Age, or even earlier...

Following the Dark Age fortifications, it was evidently reworked into a motte-and-bailey type castle during the reign of Alexander I, which was in turn trashed by the English forces during the Wars of Independence.

It was substantially rebuilt by Robert II in the fourteenth century.  He built this solid keep which is very well-preserved, but which is unfortunately closed to the public until April.



The fun part of this castle is the rear wall, which (according to the noticeboard) was originally the site of the main entrance, though you'd find that hard to believe these days!






This elevation rewards the careful visitor which some fascinating details.  A number of carved heraldic panels are present, along with a pair of fine carved beasts:-






Are they in their original location?  Hmm...  I'm not convinced.  I think they're probably part of the medieval build, but a location in the external curtain wall perhaps seems a little more likely. And yet, the twin beasts appear to be part of a quoin, so...

A return trip should be in order later in the year.  For a look inside, and a guidebook!

(Oh, and in case you're interested, the excavations at Dundonald revealed a quantity of circular perforated slates, just like the ones we've been finding at Kilwinning.  Which isn't surprising, since the two sides are just about contemporary and in a manner of speaking just down the road from each other!!)

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