This floating castle appears to be from an enchanted fable, but in actuality it is Europe's best preserved Renaissance water castle.
Historic Environment Scotland is an organization established by Scottish Ministers to preserve over 300 national landmarks and promote conservation efforts across the country. One of its preserved sites is the Duff House, a 1735 classical mansion.
The Category A-listed building is three stories tall with a raised basement, and designed by the architect William Adam. Located in Banff, Aberdeenshire, it was built for William Duff of Braco, and later the Earl of Fife. Construction was paused in 1741 over a pricing dispute and resulting legal action.
Duff actually never lived at his namesake mansion, preferring Rothiemay Castle where he died in 1763. After Duff’s death, his family moved into the mansion, but left the house in 1906 and it was rented out as a hotel and a hospital for the treatment of internal diseases.
The house was requisitioned by the army during World War II, and damaged by German bombing in 1940. Even though two incendiary bombs penetrated the roof but did not go off, a service wing at the rear of the house was seriously damaged and subsequently demolished.
By the 1950s the house was derelict, but later restored. It is now used to display works of art from the National Galleries of Scotland.
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