Bein Inn Hotel, Glenfarg, Glenfarg PH2 9PY, Scotland. Find the best deal, compare prices and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor.
Castle in Perthshire was a symbol of feudal times and is well
worth seeing. It sits about three miles from Glenfarg, not far
from the Fair City of Perth. From its elevated position it commands
an excellent view over the Eden valley and the Lomonds. It used
to belong to the Murrays, who figure so largely in history, then
became the property of the Earl of Mansfield, the lineal descendant
of that ancient house, and is now managed by Historic Scotland.
At one time it must have been a splendid baronial pile, as well
as a place of considerable strength and importance. Even yet it
is in a fair state of preservation. There is no date on the building,
but there are the remains of several coats of arms, almost wholly
obliterated, on different parts of it, from which the date may
be gathered. Above the door which opens into the principal building
from the courtyard is a shield, on which two coats of arms are
emblazoned. They are very indistinct, but they appear to be those
of Margaret Barclay and her husband, Sir Andrew Murray. And if
this be the case, the building must have been erected in the reign
of James IV., about the end of the fifteenth century. It is first
mentioned on a document dated 1507.
On the first floor above is the great hall, measuring 31
feet by 18 feet. Over the staircase tower there is a
peculiar watch-turret, from which a large tract of the surrounding
country is visible. It will he noticed that some buildings of
a more recent date, 1567, have been added to the castle. The
name " Balvaird " is Celtic, signifying " The town of the Bard."
This means that long before the castle was erected the spot
was the residence of the old Druidical Bard, the poet laureate
of his tribe. Here, on this identical eminence, when writing
was unknown, the Bard sang of the deeds of the neighbouring
heroes, their prowess in battle, their loves, and their romances.
Here he helped to mould the Celtic language and to develop the
Ochils poet wrote a beautiful idyll about this old baronial
is to-day the real laird,
was, in ages long ago,
ancient castle's, 'clept Balvaird,
neither know, nor care to know.
lately--Fortune will'd it so--
pair of lovers, newly pair'd,
up Glenfarg they chanced to go,
chance to that old castle fared.
sweet the summer eve was air'd
pink wild-roses, all a-blow,
larches, long and waving-hair'd,
many a ridgy terraced row
Farg sang humbly far below;
lark the heaven of heavens dared,--
drew them, and they chanced to go
that old castle of Ba'vaird.
lady, nestling closer, shared
cloak that round them twain did go,
thus the castle's frown they dared,
scaled the battlement--when lo!
flashed the moon with magic glow,
on the instant they were laird
lady, living long age,
their strong castle of Ba'vaird !"
between Gateside and Bridge of Earn within Perth and Kinross,
the L-shaped tower house of Balvaird Castle sits atop an exposed
ridge, overlooking Glen Farg. The Murrays of Balvaird were the
forebears of the family which eventually acquired the titles
of Lord Balvaird, Viscount Stormont and Earl of Mansfield. The
castle underwent extensive alterations and additions in 1567
were made when the courtyard buildings were significantly added
to. The Murray family left this castle in favour of Scone in
1685 and although it served as accommodation for farm workers,
the sophisticated buildings had fallen into disrepair by 1845.
Acquired by Historic Scotland in 1974, it has been restored
to its former glory.
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