The Scottish Reformation was the process by which Scotland broke with the Papacy and developed a predominantly Calvinist national Kirk, which was strongly Presbyterian in outlook. It was part of the wider European Protestant Reformation that took place from the sixteenth century, in the earlier part of the sixteenth century, the teachings of Martin Luther began to influence Scotland. Particularly important was the work of the Lutheran Scot Patrick Hamilton and his death in 1542 left the infant Mary, Queen of Scots as his heir, allowing a series of English invasions known as the Rough Wooing. The English supplied books and distributed Bibles and Protestant literature in the Lowlands when they invaded in 1547, the execution of the Zwingli-influenced George Wishart in 1546, who was burnt at the stake on the orders of Cardinal David Beaton, stimulated the growth of these ideas in reaction. The survivors, including chaplain John Knox, were condemned to serve as galley slaves and their martyrdom stirred resentment of the French and inspiring additional martyrs for the Protestant cause.
In 1549, the defeat of the English with French support led to the marriage of Mary to the French dauphin, the Scottish Reformation Parliament of 1560 adopted a Protestant confession of faith, rejecting papal jurisdiction and the mass. Knox, having escaped the galleys and having spent time in Geneva, the Calvinism of the reformers led by Knox resulted in a settlement that adopted a Presbyterian system and rejected most of the elaborate trappings of the Medieval church. When her husband Francis II died in 1560, the Catholic Mary returned to Scotland to take up the government and her six-year personal reign was marred by a series of crises, largely caused by the intrigues and rivalries of the leading nobles. Opposition to her third husband Bothwell led to the formation of a coalition of nobles, who captured Mary and forced her abdicate in favour of her son, James was brought up a Protestant, but resisted Presbyterianism and the independence of the Kirk. The Reformation resulted in changes in Scottish society.
These included a desire to plant a school in every parish, scotlands ecclesiastical art paid a heavy toll as a result of Reformation iconoclasm. Native craftsmen and artists turned to secular patrons, resulting in the flourishing of Scottish Renaissance painted ceilings, the Reformation had a severe impact on church music, with song schools closed down, choirs disbanded, music books and manuscripts destroyed and organs removed from churches. These were replaced by the singing of psalms, despite attempts of James VI to refound the song schools. The Kirk became the subject of pride and many Scots saw their country as a new Israel. Christianity spread in Scotland from the century, with evangelisation by Irish-Scots missionaries and, to a lesser extent. The whole Ecclesia Scoticana, with individual Scottish bishoprics, became the daughter of the see of Rome. It was run by special councils made up of all the Scottish bishops, the administration of parishes was often given over to local monastic institutions in a process known as appropriation.
By the time of the Reformation in the mid-sixteenth century 80 per cent of Scottish parishes were appropriated, in 1472 St Andrews became the first archbishopric in the Scottish church, to be followed by Glasgow in 1492
Saint Fergus was a bishop who worked in Scotland as a missionary. Ten saints of this name are mentioned in the martyrology of Donegal, no one knows for certain when Fergus was born or where. He was a contemporary of St. Drostan and St. Donevaldus, the name is of Pictish origin and he is recorded as Fergus, a Pictish Bishop, so it is generally considered he was from the north east of what is now called Scotland. In the Aberdeen breviary he is called Fergustian and he occupied himself in converting the barbarous people and he is thought to have trained in Ireland or the south of Scotland, possibly both. He settled first near Strageath, in Upper Strathearn, in Upper Perth, the churches of Strageath and Dolpatrick are found there dedicated to St. Patrick. He next evangelized Caithness and established there the churches of Wick, the church Fergus built at Glamis would have been in the Celtic mud and wattle style, not far from the present kirk. He may have been the Fergustus Pictus who went to Rome in 721 and he died about 730 and was buried at Glamis, where the recently restored St Fergus Well can be visited.
The village church at Eassie is dedicated to Saint Fergus, the noted Pictish Eassie Stone has been moved to that church, during the time of James IV, the Abbot of Scone removed his head to Scone church and build an expensive shrine for it. Aberdeen was able to obtain an arm of the saint, Saint Fergus is the patron saint of Glamis and Wick. The Martyrology of Tallaght mentions his festival on 8 September but in Scotland it was previously on 27 November
Gowrie is a region and ancient province of Scotland, covering most of the eastern part of what became Perthshire. The province is the home of such ancient Scottish royal sites as Scone and its chief settlement is the city of Perth. Today it is most often associated with the Carse of Gowrie and it is usually written as Goverin or Gouerin in the Latin of the Middle Ages. The Old Gaelic terms Circinn and Mag Gerghinn, may be related, Alex Woolf and William J. Watson both implied that the name derived from the Cenél nGabraín. The modern Gaelic for the province is Gobharaidh, unless it is derived from Gerghinn or Circinn, Gowrie contains some of the best farmland in the whole of Scotland, a key to explaining its importance in Scottish history. The Carse of Gowrie, the part of the region, has traditionally been called the Garden of Scotland. Coupar, the location of Coupar Angus Abbey, lay at the borders of Angus with Gowrie, originally on the Gowrie side. Blairgowrie, Plain of Gowrie, was recorded as Blair in Gowrie in 1604, where the cross of MacDuff marked the boundary of the kindred, was probably the boundary between Fothriff and Gowrie.
The following is a list of settlements and places of interest in the province, Forteviot. The Scottish royal coronation site was located in province, at Scone. Containing sites such as Scone and Forteviot, and perhaps originally Abernethy, in the 12th century, when detailed records begin, the king possessed four royal manors in the province, these manors were Scone, Strathardle and Coupar. Those four royal manors were held by the crown in addition to the rest of the province, in either the reign of Alexander I or David I a burgh was founded in the province, located at Perth. It had a sheriff, called the Sheriff of Gowrie or Sheriff of Scone, there are judices, Brehons, of the province of Gowrie recorded from the 12th century into the 14th century. Ecclesiastically, Gowrie was largely controlled by the Bishop of St Andrews, the title of Earl of Gowrie was resurrected in 1945 for a descendant of the 2nd Earl. The Acts of Malcolm IV, Barrow, G. W. S, the Judex, in G. W. S. Barrow The Kingdom of the Scots, pp.
57–67 Duncan, A. A. M. The Sheriffs of Scotland, An Interim List to C.1306, David, Scottish Place-Names, Watson, W. J. The Celtic Place-Names of Scotland, with an Introduction, full Watson bibliography and corrigenda by Simon Taylor Woolf, From Pictland to Alba, 789–1070
Huntingtower Castle was built in stages from the 15th century by the Clan Ruthven family and was known for several hundred years as the House of Ruthven. In the summer of 1582, the castle was occupied by the 4th Lord Ruthven, who was the 1st Earl of Gowrie, Gowrie was involved in a plot to kidnap the young King James VI, son of Mary, Queen of Scots. During 1582 Gowrie and his associates seized the king and held him prisoner for 10 months. This kidnapping is known as the Raid of Ruthven and the Protestant conspirators behind it hoped to power through controlling the king. The Castle and lands were restored to the Ruthven family in 1586, however in 1600, the brothers John and Alexander Ruthven were implicated in another plot to kill King James VI and were executed. This time, the king was less merciful, as well as seizing the estates, he abolished the name of Ruthven, thus the House of Ruthven ceased to exist and by royal proclamation the castle was renamed Huntingtower. The Castle remained in the possession of the crown until 1643 when it was given to the family of Murray of Tullibardine, John Murray, 1st Duke of Atholl resided in the Castle, where his wife Lady Mary Ross bore a son 7 February 1717.
The Castle began to be neglected and after Lady Mary died in 1767, the last inhabitants of the castle were the family of the castle custodian Niel Cowan. The Cowan family of Niel, Margaret and Lorraine left in late 2002, the castle can be visited by the public and is sometimes used as a venue for marriage ceremonies. It is in the care of Historic Scotland, the original Huntingtower was a free-standing building, constructed primarily as a gatehouse. It consists of three storeys and a garret under the roof, around the end of the 15th century a second tower was built alongside the Huntingtower, with a gap of about 3 metres between them. This second tower was L-shaped in plan and was connected to the Huntingtower by a wooden bridge below the level of the battlements. It is thought that this construction was for reasons, if one tower was attacked and taken, residents could flee into the second. The space between the two towers was built up in the late 17th century resulting in the Castle as it stands today, at the same time the number and size of windows was greatly increased, particularly in the Western Tower.
A great hall was built against the side of the Western Tower in the 16th century. The defensive walls that enclosed the Castle have been removed. Among the features of interest at Huntingtower are early 16th-century paintings which survive on the first floor of the Eastern Tower and these include fragmentary wall paintings showing flowers and Biblical scenes, and a largely complete decorative scheme on the wooden ceiling. Among the designs are animals on the main beams
Wars of Scottish Independence
The Wars of Scottish Independence were a series of military campaigns fought between the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England in the late 13th and early 14th centuries. The First War began with the English invasion of Scotland in 1296, the Second War began with the English-supported invasion by Edward Balliol and the Disinherited in 1332, and ended in 1357 with the signing of the Treaty of Berwick. The wars were part of a crisis for Scotland and the period became one of the most defining times in its history. At the end of wars, Scotland retained its status as an independent state. The wars were important for reasons, such as the emergence of the longbow as a key weapon in medieval warfare. King Alexander III of Scotland died in 1286, leaving his three-year-old granddaughter Margaret as his heir. In 1290, the Guardians of Scotland signed the Treaty of Birgham agreeing to the marriage of the Maid of Norway and Edward of Caernarvon, the son of Edward I, who was Margarets great-uncle.
However, travelling to her new kingdom, died shortly after landing on the Orkney Islands around 26 September 1290, with her death, there were 13 rivals for succession. The two leading competitors for the Scottish crown were Robert Bruce, 5th Lord of Annandale and John Balliol, Edward agreed to meet the guardians at Norham in 1291. Before the process got underway Edward insisted that he be recognised as Lord Paramount of Scotland, when they refused, he gave the claimants three weeks to agree to his terms, knowing that by his armies would have arrived and the Scots would have no choice. Edwards ploy worked, and the claimants to the crown were forced to acknowledge Edward as their Lord Paramount and accept his arbitration. Their decision was influenced in part by the fact that most of the claimants had large estates in England and, however, many involved were churchmen such as Bishop Wishart for whom such mitigation cannot be claimed. Two days later, in Upsettlington, the Guardians of the Realm, all Scots were required to pay homage to Edward I, either in person or at one of the designated centres by 27 July 1291.
There were thirteen meetings from May to August 1291 at Berwick, on 3 August, Edward asked Balliol and Bruce to choose 40 arbiters each, while he chose 24, to decide the case. On 12 August, he signed a writ that required the collection of all documents that concern the competitors rights or his own title to the superiority of Scotland. Balliol was named king by a majority on 17 November 1292, on 26 December, at Newcastle upon Tyne, King John swore homage to Edward I for the Kingdom of Scotland. Edward soon made it clear that he regarded the country as a vassal state, undermined by members of the Bruce faction, struggled to resist, and the Scots resented Edwards demands. In 1294, Edward summoned John Balliol to appear before him, on his return to Scotland, John held a meeting with his council and after a few days of heated debate, plans were made to defy the orders of Edward I
Cináed mac Ailpín, commonly anglicised as Kenneth MacAlpin and known in most modern regnal lists as Kenneth I, was a king of the Picts who, according to national myth, was the first king of Scots. He was thus known by the posthumous nickname of An Ferbasach. The dynasty that ruled Scotland for much of the period claimed descent from him. The Kenneth of myth, conqueror of the Picts and founder of the Kingdom of Alba, was born in the centuries after the real Kenneth died. In the reign of Kenneth II, when the Chronicle of the Kings of Alba was compiled, Pictland was named after the Picts, whom, as we have said, Kinadius destroyed. Two years before he came to Pictland, he had received the kingdom of Dál Riata, gret bataylis than dyd he, To pwt in freedom his cuntre. When humanist scholar George Buchanan wrote his history Rerum Scoticarum Historia in the 1570s, Buchanan included an account of how Kenneths father had been murdered by the Picts and a detailed, and entirely unsupported, account of how Kenneth avenged him and conquered the Picts.
As a result, much of the misleading and vivid detail was removed from the series of events. Other Gaels, such as Caustantín and Óengus, the sons of Fergus, were identified among the Pictish king lists, as were Angles such as Talorcen son of Eanfrith, historians would reject parts of the Kenneth produced by Skene and subsequent historians, while accepting others. Medievalist Alex Woolf, interviewed by The Scotsman in 2004, is quoted as saying, there’s actually no hint at all that he was a Scot. If you look at contemporary sources there are four other Pictish kings after him, so he’s the fifth last of the Pictish kings rather than the first Scottish king. Many other historians could be quoted in terms similar to Woolf, the Pictish institution of kingship provided the basis for merger with the Gaelic Alpin dynasty. The meeting of King Constantine and Bishop Cellach at the Hill of Belief near the city of Scone in 906 cemented the rights. Hence the change in styling from King of the Picts to King of Alba, the legacy of Gaelic as the first national language of Scotland does not obscure the foundational process in the establishment of the Scottish kingdom of Alba.
Kenneths origins are uncertain, as are his ties, if any, among the genealogies contained in the Rawlinson B502 manuscript, dating from around 1130, is the supposed descent of Malcolm II of Scotland. Medieval genealogies are unreliable sources, but many historians still accept Kenneths descent from the established Cenél nGabráin, or at the very least from some unknown minor sept of the Dál Riata. Leaving aside the shadowy kings before Áedán son of Gabrán, the genealogy is certainly flawed insofar as Áed Find, who died c. 778, could not reasonably be the son of Domangart, who was killed c. 673. The conventional account would insert two generations between Áed Find and Domangart, Eochaid mac Echdach, father of Áed Find, who died c. That Kenneth was a Gael is not widely rejected, but modern historiography distinguishes between Kenneth as a Gael by culture and/or in ancestry, and Kenneth as a king of Gaelic Dál Riata
Earl of Gowrie
Earl of Gowrie is a title that has been created twice, once in the Peerage of Scotland and once in the Peerage of the United Kingdom, both times for members of the Ruthven family. It takes its name from Gowrie, a region and ancient province of Scotland. On 23 August 1581 William Ruthven, 4th Lord Ruthven, was created Earl of Gowrie by James VI and he was executed for high treason and his peerages forfeited on 28 May 1584. The Ruthven family descended from Sir William Ruthven, who was created Lord Ruthven in the Peerage of Scotland in 1488, Lord Ruthvens son and heir, William Ruthven, Master of Ruthven, was one of the many Scottish nobles killed at the Battle of Flodden in 1513. Lord Ruthven died in 1528 and was succeeded by his grandson, the second Lord, the second Lord was an Extraordinary Lord of Session and Keeper of the Privy Seal of Scotland. He was succeeded by his son, the third Lord, Patrick was the leader of the band which murdered David Rizzio. After the murder he fled to England where he died in 1566 and he was succeeded by his son, the aforementioned fourth Lord, who was created Earl of Gowrie in 1581.
Thomas Ruthven, grandson of Alexander Ruthven of Freeland, younger son of the second Lord Ruthven, was created Lord Ruthven of Freeland in 1651. His descendant Walter Hore-Ruthven, 9th Lord Ruthven of Freeland was created Baron Ruthven of Gowrie, of Gowrie in the County of Perth and he was succeeded by his eldest son, the tenth Lord and former Major General in the British Army. Lord Gowrie was the grandson of the Honourable Alexander Hore-Ruthven, Governor-General of Australia between 1936 and 1945 and the son of the ninth Lord Ruthven of Freeland. Alexander Hore-Ruthven had been elevated to the Peerage of the United Kingdom as Baron Gowrie, of Canberra in the Commonwealth of Australia and of Dirleton in the County of East Lothian, in 1935. As of 2014 the titles are held by the grandson, the second Earl, elder son of the Honourable Patrick Hore-Ruthven, only surviving son of the first Earl. He notably served in the Conservative administrations under Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s, however, he lost his seat in the House of Lords after the passage of the House of Lords Act 1999.
Lord Gowrie is Chief of the Name and Arms of Ruthven, the Earl is in remainder to the lordship of Ruthven of Freeland. Several other members of the Ruthven family may be mentioned, Alexander Ruthven, third son of the first Earl of the first creation, took part in the Gowrie conspiracy of 1600, was condemned for treason and hanged and quartered. Patrick Ruthven, 1st Earl of Brentford, was the grandson of William Ruthven, Sir John Ruthven, nephew of the Earl of Brentford, was a Major-General in the Swedish Army. His son, Francis Ruthven, was created a Baronet in 1666, the Honourable Malise Ruthven, younger brother of the second Earl of Gowrie of the second creation, is a writer and historian. The coat of arms of the Earl of Gowrie is, Paly of six argent, crest, A Rams Head couped Sable, armed Or
A moot hill or mons placiti is a hill or mound historically used as an assembly or meeting place, as a moot hall is a meeting or assembly building, traditionally to decide local issues. In early medieval Britain, such hills were used for moots, among other things, proclamations might be read, decisions might be taken, court cases might be settled at a moot. Although some moot hills were naturally occurring features or had been created long before as burial mounds, in England, the word folkmoot in time came to mean a more specific local assembly with recognised legal rights. In Scotland the term is used in the literature for want of any other single accepted term, many moot, mote or mute hills are known by that name today. Others have local names such as Court Hill, Justice Hill, Judgement Hill, Munt, Moat Hill, Downan, Bonfire Hill, many are associated with names such as Knol, knowe, or law. Terms include Tumulus, howe, tump, pen, toot, cop, mound, knoll, moot, knol and druid hill. Often the names are combined, as in Knockenlaw, Law Mount, some hills known today as moot hills were actually historically mottes, the remains of a motte-and-bailey castle.
In some cases a mound built as a motte may have seen use as a functioning moot hill. One common aid to identification is size, most moot hills, in addition to lacking signs of defensive walls and ditches, are smaller than most mottes. Some known moot hill sites are surrounded by water, such as Mugdock, Mound Wood and Court Hill at the Hill of Beith, others may well have been, such inaccessibility would have required the use of a boat or raised walkway. Wood Mound is clearly man-made and therefore the relationship between these sites and water may have had some functional or religious significance and these were places of assembly in early medieval times, mostly in northern Scotland. The term is found as an element at over sixty sites. The term does not suggest a hill or mound site, being derived from the Gaelic term comhdhail, such assemblies were non-seignural burlaw courts and dealt with minor disputes. These mote and court hills serve to explain the use of these high mounts still remaining near our ancient castles, the mote hill at Scoons this day universally known.
It is highly probable the Hurly Heaky was the hill of the Castle of Sterling. Our authority says, Super ripam aquae de Forth juxta Strivelyn, the court of Areopagus, at Athens, sat for many years after its first institution, in the open air. Grose records that the last instance of a Baron Baillie sentencing and carrying out a sentence in Nithsdale was at Barnside Hill in around 1697. Sir Robert Grierson, Bart was the concerned and the victim was a sheep stealer
Scone Palace /ˈskuːn/ is a Category A listed historic house and 5 star tourism attraction near the village of Scone and the city of Perth, Scotland. Built of red sandstone with a roof, it is one of the finest examples of late Georgian Gothic style in the United Kingdom. A place steeped in history, Scone was originally the site of an early Christian church, in the 12th century, Scone Priory was granted abbey status and as a result an Abbots residence - an Abbots Palace - was constructed. It is for this reason that the current structure retains the name Palace, Scone Abbey was severely damaged in 1559 during the Scottish Reformation after a mob whipped up by the famous reformer, John Knox, came to Scone from Dundee. Having survived the Reformation, the Abbey in 1600 became a secular Lordship within the parish of Scone, the Palace has thus been home to the Earls of Mansfield for over 400 years. During the early 19th century the Palace was enlarged by the architect William Atkinson, in 1802, David William Murray, 3rd Earl of Mansfield, commissioned Atkinson to extend the Palace, recasting the late 16th-century Palace of Scone.
The 3rd Earl tasked Atkinson with updating the old Palace whilst maintaining characteristics of the medieval Gothic abbey buildings it was built upon, landscaping work around the Palace was undertaken by John Claudius Loudon. Loudon was, similarly to Atkinson, tasked with designing a landscape to remain in keeping with, as well as highlighting, Scone was for nearly 1000 years the crowning-place of Scottish kings and the home of the Stone of Scone. It is a site of historic significance. Further work was undertaken in 1842 to make Scone Palace ready for the visit of Queen Victoria, the vast majority of this work was to the interior decor although did include the provision of running water a huge cost to the Earl. Many of the original early 19th century interior designs survive, including several ornately carved and vaulted ceilings, Scone Palace is a 5 star tourism attraction. The State Rooms are open each year from April till the end of September and it is possible for groups to organize visits during the winter months.
The Palace grounds are open to the public. The gardens include the famous David Douglas Pinetum plus a star-shaped maze, the Palace hosts multiple outdoor events including the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trusts Scottish Game Fair, Rewind Festival, and the Farming of Yesteryear among many others. The history of Scone is shrouded in myth and legend, sitting on the edge of Europe, was one of the last kingdoms to adopt and benefit from the written word and the legal system it upheld. The first piece of evidence that we have relating to Scone is a charter dating to 906. Many historians writing previously to the 20th century have suggested without any decent evidence that Scones history was not just post, modern historians for this very reason are very non-committal regarding the early history of Scone as there is simply too much doubt and very little evidence. It is not known why exactly the area is called Scone and it is difficult thus to know where to start in terms of the etymology of Scone
Perthshire, officially the County of Perth, is a registration county in central Scotland. It extends from Strathmore in the east, to the Pass of Drumochter in the north, Rannoch Moor and Ben Lui in the west and it was a local government county from 1890 to 1930. Perthshire is known as the big county and has a variety of landscapes, from the rich agricultural straths in the east. Perthshire was an administrative county between 1890 and 1975, governed by a county council and this Local Government council was superseded in 1930, when a joint Local Government council was formed with the neighbouring small county of Kinross-shire, linking the two. The parish of Muckhart and Glendevon was made part of Clackmannan District Council, longforgan was included in the City of Dundee District, in Tayside Region Council. The remainder of the council was combined with the council of Kinross, the two-tier system introduced in 1975 was superseded by a system of unitary authorities in 1996. The area of the council is now divided between the Local Government council areas of Clackmannanshire and Kinross and Stirling.
The area included in Dundee in 1975 was transferred to Perth, the coat of arms of the County of Perth appears to have been granted for use on the colours and standards of the volunteer and militia units of the county raised at the end of the eighteenth century. The grant document was discovered in the Lyon Office in 1890, the shield is very similar to the Scottish royal arms, reflecting that Perthshire was the home county of the House of Dunkeld and contains the former royal capital, Scone. Further royal references are made on the canton, which shows Scone Palace surmounted by the Crown of Scotland, the crest is a Highland soldier, reflecting that the famous Black Watch were formed in the county. The supporters are an eagle and a warhorse, the former from the arms of the city of Perth, of the twelve burghs in Perthshire, only Perth was made a large burgh. There were ten small burghs and Rattray being united into a single burgh, in 1947 Pitlochry was created a small burgh. In 1894 parish councils were established for the parishes, replacing the previous parochial boards.
The parish councils were in turn replaced by district councils in 1930, the Royal Burgh of Perth originally formed part of the Perth burghs constituency along with burghs in Fife and Forfarshire. The Representation of the People Act 1832 made Perth a separate burgh constituency, the remainder of the county returned a single member as the parliamentary county of Perthshire. The parishes of Tulliallan, Culross and the Perthshire portions of the parishes of Logie and Fossaway were annexed to constituency of Clackmannanshire, in 1885 seats in the House of Commons were redistributed, Perthshire received three seats. Perthshire Eastern Perthshire Western In 1918 there was a further redistribution, in 1950 it was renamed Perth and East Perthshire. These boundaries continued in use until 1983, when new constituencies were formed based on the Local Government regions and districts created in 1975
Dirleton Castle is a medieval fortress in the village of Dirleton, East Lothian, Scotland. It lies around 2 miles west of North Berwick, and around 19 miles east of Edinburgh, the oldest parts of the castle date to the 13th century, and it was abandoned by the end of the 17th century. Begun in around 1240 by John De Vaux, the castle was damaged during the Wars of Scottish Independence. In the 14th century, Dirleton was repaired by the Haliburton family, the Ruthvens were involved in several plots against Mary, Queen of Scots, and King James VI, and eventually forfeited the castle in 1600. Dirleton ceased to be a residence, although Oliver Cromwell was forced to besiege the castle to flush out a band of mosstroopers, the damaged castle was acquired by John Nisbet, Lord Dirleton, who decided to build a new country house on the nearby Archerfield Estate. The Nisbet family of Dirleton continued to maintain the castles gardens, the ruins and gardens are now maintained by Historic Scotland. The ruins comprise a 13th-century keep, and a 16th-century house which the Ruthvens built adjacent, only the basement levels survive of the 14th- and 15th-century additions built by the Haliburtons, although these comprised a large hall and tower house along the east range.
Other buildings within the courtyard have been demolished, surrounding the castle are gardens, which may have been first laid out in the 16th century, although the present planting is largely of the 20th century. The garden walls enclose a 16th-century doocot, or pigeon house, the Norman family of de Vaux originated in Rouen, northern France, and settled in England following the Norman Conquest of 1066. Two de Vaux brothers, or cousins, were among a number of Anglo-Norman knights invited to Scotland, hubert de Vaux was given the barony of Gilsland in Cumbria, at that time part of Scotland, while John de Vaux was granted the barony of Dirleton. John built a castle at Eldbotle, probably to the north-west of modern Dirleton, in 1220, Fidra was gifted to the monks of Dryburgh Abbey by William de Vaux. Williams son, another John, had held hostage in England as surety for the good conduct of King William the Lion in 1213. He began the construction of a replacement for Tarbet at Dirleton, in 1239, de Vaux was appointed seneschal, or steward, to Marie de Coucy, on her marriage to King Alexander II.
Marie de Coucy was the daughter of Enguerrand III, Lord of Coucy, builder of the Château de Coucy, in Picardy, which probably served as a model for Dirleton. The 13th-century stone castle, of only the donjon, or keep, represented a show of de Vauxs status. Peaceful times ended in 1296, with the outbreak of the Wars of Scottish Independence, which guarded the route between Edinburgh and the English border, changed hands several times through the invasions of the English under King Edward I. During the campaign of summer 1298, the castle was besieged by English forces under Antony Bek, Dirleton withstood the assault for several months, until the English victory at Falkirk allowed them to bring up large siege engines, after which the castle was soon reduced. Dirleton was garrisoned by the English, but must have been retaken by the Scots before 1306 and it was finally retaken by the Scots some time before 1314, and was slighted, or deliberately damaged, to prevent its reuse by the English