A Palace Fit for a Laird

Rowallan Castle Archaeology and Research

By Gordon Ewart Dennis Gallagher

Format: Paperback



Rowallan Castle bears witness to the architectural aspirations of successive lords over 400 years. This volume lays out a decade of archaeological and documentary research to achieve a better understanding of the site. The investigations provided insights into the lives of the middle ranking Scots nobility upon whom the kings often relied.


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Historic Environment Scotland

Historic Environment Scotland is a lead public body established to investigate, care for and promote Scotland's historic environment. They take on the responsibilities of Historic Scotland and the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments, which has been managing and recording the historic environment for more than a century. Their books deliver wonderfully illustrated and immaculately researched titles to anyone with an interest in Scotland's history and heritage.

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The castellated country seat of the Muirs of Rowellan bears witness to the architectural aspirations of successive lords over four hundred years. The Muirs were well aware of the deeply rooted symbolic importance of choosing this attractive and well watered location seat by the Carmel Water in Ayrshire. Within only three generations, lairds who might have expected to die in battle for their king, had been transformed into musicians and poets enjoying the good life of James VI's Great Britain.



The latest chapter of Rowallan's long history has been as a property in the care of Historic Scotland, and this volume lays out the results of a decade of archaeological and documentary research to achieve a better understanding of the site. This complex story begins with its use as a place of burial for Bronze Age farmers, and ends with the construction of a palace in miniature modelled on those of their Stewart kings, to which the Muirs were related by marriage and mistresses. These investigations have revealed something of the lives of the middle rank of Scots nobility, of which we know little, and yet upon whom the kings relied so much, as expressed through a unique survivor of a lairdly house.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Format Paperback
Imprint Historic Environment Scotland
Publication Date 15 Apr 2015
ISBN 9781849170154
Number of Pages 132

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