Cawdor (Scottish Gaelic: Caladar) is a village and parish in the Highland council area, Scotland. The village is situated 5 miles south south west of Nairn, and 12 miles from Inverness. Until 1975, the village was in Nairnshire.
Macbeth, in Shakespeare's play of the same name, becomes Thane of Cawdor early in the narrative. However, since the oldest part of the structure dates from the 14th century, and has no predecessor , Shakespeare's version (and the tradition which came before it) is of extremely dubious historical authenticity.
The name "Cawdor" is the English pronunciation and spelling of the ancient and original name Calder. In the early 19th century, the Lord at the time was residing in England and changed the name of the castle, town and clan overnight so that it would match the Shakespearian designation (reference: Cawdor Historical Society).
The site was excavated between 1984 and 1987 and several features were identified which are of this classification.
A single fragment of Roman coarse ware was found in the bottom of the ditch outside the south-west gateway along with burnt material; this pottery has very similar fabric to that found at Inchtuthill. In addition to this sparse pottery evidence, the demolition deposits in the western ditch yielded a piece of charcoal which has been radiocarbon dated to A.D. 80-130 (Calibrated).
Cawdor Roman fort is probably the most northerly known Roman fort in the British Isles.
The area has recently received a new school building as the old school was over one hundred years old and could not fit all of the pupils and had been using huts (pre-fabricated caravan-like structures) to make room. The area also has a village shop which recently has been struggling financially for the past few years, but still is useful for the community.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cawdor.|
- Cawdor Castle website
- Sunday Times article, "The Curse of the Cawdors", detailing recent family history
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