Stirling Castle

Sterling Castle

Location: Stirling, Scotland Map


Description of Stirling Castle

Stirling Castle is a historic castle in the city of Stirling, Scotland (United Kingdom). It was built on top of the "hill of the castle" (the castle hill), a peak of volcanic origin, and is surrounded on three sides by cliffs. The castle of Stirling is listed as a National Monument, and its management has therefore been entrusted to the specialized agency Historic Scotland. Stirling castle also houses the headquarters, as well as the museum, of a British Army Regiment, the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders Regiment, although that regiment no longer has its base in the Stirling Castle.

Most of the main buildings of the castle date back to the 15th and 16th centuries, although some buildings are even earlier, specifically from the 14th century. The exterior defenses of the castle that face the city, meanwhile, date from the early eighteenth century. At the beginning of the 14th century Stirling Castle suffered a siege by the English troops of Edward I, in the framework of the so-called Scottish Wars of Independence. Historians indicate that it was during this assault that Warwolf, the largest siege engine that has ever been built, was used for the first time, and it was with devastating effects.

The crenellated wall, which protects the entrance to Stirling castle proper once its outer defenses have been overcome, was built by James III of Scotland, originally constituting a part of the system of fortifications that surrounded and protected the rocky base. At its two extremities were solid rectangular casemates and, at its center, framing the entrance to the fortified enclosure, four large circular towers was covered with conical roofs. Of this magnificent composition only the casemate and the southernmost main tower (now attached to the main body of the building) have survived along with parts of the original walls, the entrance and the lower part of the internal circular towers, as well as vestiges of the external and of the casemate and northern circular towers.