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Aberdeen, Gallowgate, 'mar's Castle'

Castle (Medieval)

Site Name Aberdeen, Gallowgate, 'mar's Castle'

Classification Castle (Medieval)

Alternative Name(s) Old Castle; Bishop's Palace

Canmore ID 20145

Site Number NJ90NW 25

NGR NJ 9411 0676

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2021.

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Administrative Areas

  • Council Aberdeen, City Of
  • Parish Aberdeen
  • Former Region Grampian
  • Former District City Of Aberdeen
  • Former County Aberdeenshire

Archaeology Notes

NJ90NW 25 9411 0676.

(NJ 9411 0676) Mar's Castle (NR) (Remains of)

OS 1:500 map, Aberdenshire, 2nd ed., (1901).

The site of 'Mar's Castle', more commonly known as the 'Old Castle', which was a very strong and substantial building bearing the date 1494. In 1866 there were remains of walls on the site, but these were not strong enough to have belonged to the castle, and Dr Simpson (information from Dr W D Simpson, Librarian, Aberdeen University), confirms that no trace of it survives. It is known to have been considerably altered in the mid 19th century to form shops, houses etc.

Name Book 1866; A Courage 1856.

(Additional bibliography cited).

NMRS, MS/712/83.

Nothing is now visible of this castle and its site lies in a built-up part of the city.

Visited by RCAHMS (JRS, ATW), 26 February 1997.

Architecture Notes


Photographs: Aberdeen Public Library, Reference Department - slides 1


Publication Account (1997)

A town house, known as Mar's Castle and thought to have been constructed in 1594, stood at the top of Gallowgate and bore many similarities to its contemporary, Provost Ross' House (see area 11). It is believed to have been the residence of the Earls of Mar during the seventeenth century. It was demolished for road widening in 1897.

Information from ‘Historic Aberdeen: The Archaeological Implications of Development’ (1997).


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