While President Barack Obama has Bo, and President George W. Bush had Barney, a newly published tale of a dog that lived in China’s “Forbidden City” over a century ago reveals that this pup’s lifestyle easily outdid that of any presidential pooch.
In a book that accompanies a new museum…
Clifden Castle, Ireland
The castle was built by John D’Arcy (1785-1839) in a Gothic Revival style in the early 19th century. John was a man of drive, energy and determination. He founded Clifden in 1812 and built his castle around the same time. He was married twice and had fourteen children in all, leaving one to assume that this was a very full and noisy family home.
Following John’s death in 1839, the castle and town passed to his son and heir, Hyacinth. Like so many landlords in the West of Ireland, Hyacinth became bankrupt as a result of debts incurred during the Great Famine and in 1850 the town and castle went on sale.The new owners, the Eyre family from Bath in England, purchased the town and castle for £21,245. The Eyre’s lived at the castle until the 1920s when the lands were eventually purchased by the government and divided out among the tenants. Sadly, the castle had no outright owner and, in time, was stripped bare of its slates and timbers and eventually fell to ruin.
One of the interesting features of this property is the standing stones. D’Arcy had these stones erected to imitate other standing stones around Ireland. It isn’t unknown why he did this, but the stones have been surveyed and it has been determined that they are not as ancient as D’Arcy would have us believe.
The ruins are located west of the town of Clifden in the Connemara region of County Galway, Ireland.
Bucholie Castle (formerly Lambaborg, home of the Viking pirate Sweyn Asleifsson), Freswick Bay, Caithness, Scotland
Around 1140, a fortress called Lambaborg was first built on this site by Sweyn Asleifsson the notorious Viking pirate and robber. During his career he menaced the whole Western coast of Scotland, the Isle of Mann and Ireland until finally ambushed and killed while leading a raid on Dublin.
Early in the 14th century, Robert the Bruce granted Lambaborg and the lands of Freswick to the Mowat family. They remodeled the Viking stronghold into a castle and named it Bucholie after their estate in Aberdeen. Bucholie Castle remained in the Mowat family until 1661 after which it fell into disrepair.