Medieval Elgin: Duffus Castle

Duffus, Nr Elgin, Moray, Scotland
(57°41′16″N 3°21′41″W)

c.1140 to 1705
Open to Visitors

Duffus Castle was a motte-and-bailey castle in use from c.1140 to 1705. At the time of its establishment, it was one of the most secure fortifications in Scotland.

At the beginning of the 12th century Moray was ruled by Angus, grandson of Lulach Macgillecomgan, who had succeeded Macbeth as King of Scots in 1057. Angus rebelled in 1130 and King David I began to populate the province with nobles. Among them was Freskin, of Flemish background, who built the great earthwork and timber motte-and-bailey castle in c. 1140.

Freskin’s direct line ended in 1270 and the castle passed into the ownership of Sir Reginald le Chen. With his death in 1345, Duffus passed to his daughter Mariot who was married to Nicholas, son of the 4th Earl of Sutherland. The Sutherlands were also descended from Freskyn and remained in their possession until 1705 when the castle was abandoned.

Visit Duffus Castle


Dogs Welcome
Info Boards
No Restrooms
Picnic Area
Parking (Free)
No Wheelchair Access
The south corner of the castle, broken away from the main tower block.
The south corner of the castle, broken away from the main tower block because of the weak wooden-made bottom. Source: Wikimedia Commons.
Coats of Arms of the noble family of Sutherland of Duffus.
Coats of Arms of the noble family of Sutherland of Duffus. Source: Wikimedia Commons.


Open 24 hours, year-round.


Duffus Castle,
Elgin, IV30 5RH
United Kingdom


01667 460232




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