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About GeorgeCharlie

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    Alberta, Canada
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    HAL, Celebrity
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  1. From the Culloden historical site, we moved on to another historical site - which took us back much further in the local history - some 4,000 years! The pre-historical standing-stones and burial chambers of Clava Cairns are from the Bronze Age. At the site there are exceptionally well-preserved group of prehistoric burial cairns, including passage graves, ring cairns, a kerb cairn and standing stones.
  2. There is a very nice modern visitor centre at the Culloden Battlefield. Its museum uses technology to help re-imagine the battle through a 360-degree immersion theatre. The museum also contains many archaeological finds from the Battlefield - along with the Brodie Sword, a magnificent piece that contains wonderful imagery of Medusa and dolphins on its hilt, and a rare blunderbuss that was taken from the battlefield by a Government soldier. There is also a café and souvenir shop, which sells a assortment of local products - including their exclusive Culloden Battlefield Highland Malt.
  3. An added note regarding the "Bonnie" name. It comes from the Scottish word "bonnie" meaning "pretty, attractive", or the French word "Bonne" (good) as a way to describe a fair, good and beautiful girl. Which, if the Bonnie Prince had these features, may have helped him in his escape from Scotland after his defeat in the battle at Culloden - as the famous Flora MacDonald smuggled him out - disguised as her maid!! A portrait of the Bonnie Prince. Photo copied from the National Galleries Scotland.
  4. If you are interested, the following site has an alternate view of the history related to the Battle of Culloden. https://theconversation.com/culloden-why-truth-about-battle-for-britain-lay-hidden-for-three-centuries-62398
  5. Continuing down the "Bonnie Prince's" rabbit hole. His full name was "Charles Edward Louis John Casimir Sylvester Severino Maria Stuart" - commonly shorten down to the much more manageable "Charles Edward Stuart". He was born in Rome on the 31st of December 1720. He died in Rome of a stroke on the 31st of January 1788, at the age of 67. He was first buried in the Frascati Cathedral, where his brother Henry Benedict Stuart was bishop. At Henry's death in 1807, Charles's remains (except his heart) were moved to the crypt of St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican, where they were laid to rest next to those of his brother and his father, near the monument of the Royal Stuarts. His mother is also buried in St. Peter's Basilica. His heart remained in Frascati Cathedral, where it is contained in a small urn beneath the floor under a monument. His escape from Scotland after the battle, led him to be portrayed as the romantic figure of heroic failure, most of us are now familiar with.
  6. One of the great things about travelling is that you get exposed to places, events and people for which previously, you may have had only fleeting familiarity of - or none at all. We notice after visiting new locations, how much our ears perk up if we now hear reference to them. In addition, after travelling to some of these places, I find myself delving deeper into someone's history whom which I had only fleeting prior knowledge of. In this case, it started with me wondering what the "Bonnie" meant in Bonnie Prince Charlie. Then that led me down a whole new rabbit hole! A reference to how Prince Charles first becomes known as a "Bonnie" says - Prince Charles Edward Stuart first became ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’ on a particular occasion: Tuesday 17th September 1745, the day he entered Edinburgh. He left his place of lodgings (Gray’s Mill at Slateford) and led his officers eastwards, though first looping a little southwards to avoid cannon from Edinburgh Castle. He held a short review of his forces and, ever the showman, allowed the gathering crowd quite a close view. Tall and handsome on his fine horse, he worse a tartan short coat, red velvet trousers and military boots. In short, he was a sensation and the local women, high born or not, went weak at the knees. This was when the Bonnie Prince Charlie label was first used.
  7. From Dores we drove back towards Inverness to visit the Culloden Battlefield. The battle of Culloden took place on the 16th of April 1746 and was the final chapter of the Jacobite Uprising, as well as the last pitched battle to be fought on British. We were there for about an hour and Gordon gave a walking tour of the bloody battle, the escape of Bonnie Prince Charlie and the subsequent demise of the Gaelic language and clan culture in the Highlands.
  8. It is here where the Guinness Book of Records award holder Steve Feltman resides. If you google him, you will find numerous articles covering his adventures over the years. This one is from a few years ago. https://www.thesun.co.uk/archives/news/47694/nessie-hunter-ends-24-year-search/ He also has his own website at http://www.nessiehunter.co.uk/about/ He apparently makes some of his income selling handmade Nessie figurines. He wasn't there when we visited, but here is an internet picture of where he's displaying some of his monster ornaments. You can also buy one of his ornaments at the nearby Dores Inn, which also has a pub for food and drinks. It was here where Lynne got her Nessie monster.
  9. Our next stop was in the village of Dores on the lesser-visited south side of Lock Ness. This location is not generally used by the big tour groups, as there is no parking available close by for their large busses. It is unfortunate for them, as it was recently voted one of the top 10 views in the UK. As you can tell from the "You Are Here" notation" on this information plaque, Dores is only a short distance away from Inverness.
  10. A bit more on the history of the Inverness Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral Church of Saint Andrew. It is a cathedral of the Scottish Episcopal Church and is the northernmost cathedral in mainland Britain (Dornoch Cathedral is not actually a cathedral). It was the first new Protestant cathedral to be completed in Great Britain since the Reformation. The foundation stone was laid by the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1866 and construction was completed in 1869, although the lack of funds precluded the building of the two giant spires of the original design. In my opinion, the addition of the spires would have likely made it much more impressive - maybe someday they will add them.
  11. After a visit into the cathedral, we departed Inverness on our way to try and get a glimpse of the Loch Ness monster. Unfortunately, we didn't get very far down the road, when one of our passengers in a panic - asked Gordon to go back, as she couldn't find her purse and thought she had left it on a bench by the cathedral. So, we returned back to the cathedral, but while she was running around in the courtyard by the cathedral - one of the other passengers noticed it sitting on the floor under her seat. All's well that's ends well.
  12. A restored Victorian gothic townhouse. The High Street pedestrian way.
  13. We stopped at this multi-level McDonald's to allow people to use the facilities and/or, grab a quick bite to eat. Then we headed up the hill to the castle, where Gordon continued his historical presentation. Although, his comments regarding Flora MacDonald helping Bonnie Prince Charlie escape after the Battle of Culloden were somewhat more hysterical, then historical!! Statue of Highland heroine Flora MacDonald. We didn't go into the castle, but spent some time enjoying the views. View of St. Andrew's Cathedral from the castle. Then we strolled back to the bus. Some pictures from on our way back. The Glenalbyn pub. Don't know if it is related to the Glen Albyn distillery, which operated in Inverness from 1846 to 1983. It seems like most areas of the world have their own version of "Dollar Store".
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