After the tour of the Royal Mile, our guide took us up to the castle and shared lots of fun facts with us about it… My personal favorite is about the Stone of Destiny…
Ironically enough, before going to Scotland I was visiting with my horse trainer, who is like a second family to me, and she was telling me about a movie she saw called the Stone of Destiny. It took place in Scotland and it is based on the true story about a group of Scottish student nationalists. The Stone, which was where Scottish Kings were traditionally crowned was stolen by King Edward I of England in 1296 and placed under the throne at Westminster Abbey. In the 1950’s the group of Scottish student nationalists succeeded in stealing the Stone back from Westminster Abbey and returning it to it’s righful place: Edinburgh castle!! Quite a fun story to say the least!! So while I had heard about the Stone of Destiny before I ever went to Scotland, I had of course forgotten exactly where the Stone was… So needless to say I was quite tickled when I heard that it was indeed in the Edinburgh Castle!! The Stone, to say the least is quite large and heavy looking and is currently encased in a glass display next to the Crown Jewels. No pictures were allowed to be taken of it sadly, but it was really cool to at least see it!!
In the pictures below you will see a few of the inside of parts of the castle, and one where there is a plaque in honor of Queen Elizabeth… You will also note the date however that it was in 1993… Why is it that there is a plaque in honor of Queen Elizabeth (seemingly the first Queen Elizabeth since there isn’t a II on the plaque) dated 1993?? It is in fact in honor of Queen Elizabeth II, however, since Scotland never recognized Queen Elizabeth I as their queen, to them, Queen Elizabeth is their first Queen, hence no “II” on the plaque…
The one o’clock gun… I already mentioned this bit in the section of Calton Hill, so I won’t drone on it again… However in this section you can see the pictures of the original cannon that was used to mark 1 o’clock, as well as the cannon used today (shoots blanks) to mark 1 o’clock:)
Ugh!! And I’m absolutely going to muck this up… But there was an interesting legend that revolved around St. Margaret… Basically it was a love story… As the tale goes (hoping I recall it right!) St. Margaret (originally from Hungary) was very much in love with her husband and had earned the respect and adoration as a kind Queen from many of the Scottish people. However, there was some fallout with some of the Scottish countrymen over religion… She was of one religion (Protestant???) and they another, and well, you know how those religious disputes tend to end in not so great a light… Anyway, St. Margaret was basically shunned over the religious disputes and it got so bad that she wasn’t able to leave the Castle.
While in the castle she got news that her husband died in battle and was to be buried. Loving her husband as much as she did, she requested that when she died that she be buried along side him. When she did pass away (not long after he died apparently) those still “on her side” wanted to grant her last wish of being buried by her husband, but those against her refused. Her body stayed in the chapel of the castle for three days until some people “for” St. Margaret in the middle of the night, snuck her body out of the chapel and to her husbands gravesite where they buried her. The townspeople “against” St. Margaret heard what had happened and got furious. They went to the gravesite to dig St. Margaret up, but to their astonishment were unable to actually lift her out of the gravesite! Her body had somehow become so heavy they were unable to get her back out! So they had to leave her, despite their best efforts. So as the legend goes, the townspeople were unable to move her body because her love for her husband was too strong, even in death, to allow them to take her away from him. Awww…!!!! 🙂
But seriously people, don’t quote me word-for-word on the above legend as I’m sure some bits aren’t quite correct!! And if any of you happen to hear the legend yourselves, do tell me how it’s supposed to be! Lol!!
On to The Real Mary King’s Close