Stirling Castle Scotland
Stirling Castle Royal Place
James V Palace
James V Palace at Stirling Castle was built to accommodate the new Queen in the style of the French as she was accustomed. The project took several years with building starting in 1538 on his return with his new wife Marie de Guise. Mary saw the completion of the Palace as James died in 1542 without seeing the completion.
With six rooms three for the King and three for the Queen. The Bedchamber where they each slept.
The inner chamber where each could give audience to a closer circle of friends, with the outer hall being used for functions and less personal meetings. Mary of Guise became Regent of Scotland on the death of her husband James V taking care of the crown for her daughter who was Mary Queen of Scots.
There has been many alterations to the buildings in the castle over the centuries.
The present castle has many of original buildings from the 16th century.
The Prince's Walk overlooks Queen Anne Garden and is accessed from the Princes Tower in James V Palace.
On the walls of the Palace along the Princes walk are four carvings which are of bests and one of the winged Devil.
Kings Outer Hall
The King's outer Hall was an place for people of social standing that wished an audience with the king.
Only a chosen few would be picked to go forward to the inner hall
Kings Inner Hall (Presence Chamber)
This is were the chosen few would be honoured to meet with the king
The King’s Presence Chamber (Inner Hall) was where the original Stirling Heads (wooden carved heads) decorated the ceiling. Taken down circa 1775 the ceiling had circa 100 carved oak heads some are on display in a gallery above the Royal Apartments. There are replica hand carved heads on the ceiling of the Presence (Inner) Chamber.
Kings Bedchamber - Ceiling Plaques
This was also used as a meeting place but only for close friends and the very important guests. This would have also been a dressing room and for washing with a bed in a connecting area.
Queen’s Outer Hall
The Queen's outer Hall was an place for people of social standing that wished an audience with the Queen. Only a chosen few would be chosen to go forward to the inner hall.
Queen’s Inner Hall
This is were the chosen few would be honoured to have audience with the Queen.
The benches and stools were for her ladies in waiting.
The Haunting of the castle by the Green Lady is said to be a maid of Mary Queen of Scots who had been seen as a soothsayer and predicted the death of the Queen the next night. The maid stayed awake that night and carried the Queen to safety from a fire, the Queen was saved but the maid died from her wounds she had received in saving the Queen. Thought to be a Harbinger of Doom, dressed in green velvet the maid haunts the the castle. To look into the ghosts eyes could mean certain death.
The Queens Bedchamber decorated in the opulent style of circa 1550. The grand tapestries and large fireplaces, bedding of silk with rich colours. This was her dressing room and bathing room the bed would have been in a smaller area away from all visitors. There is a painting of three birds shot with one arrow which is Mary of Guise signature.
Queen’s Dressing Table
Queen’s Linen Cupboard
Royal Palace Vaults
The Palace Vaults are found in a passageway under the Royal Palace. Each room (vault) was designated for a different section of the Royal household. There are five areas that give more information with interactive exhibitions for the children. The Musicians Vault – music and instruments of the 16th century The Jester's Vault – jokes games and tricks made for the Royals. The Painter's Vault – what and how colours were made for paints and dyes. The Carvers Vault –tools for the joiners and stonemasons, how they were used to create the wooden panels and stone carvings you can see in the Royal Palace. The Tailor's Vault – all about the clothes, jewellery and cents the Kings and Queens wore.