Ethie Castle dates to around 1300, when the monks at nearby Arbroath Abbey built a sandstone keep. The castle passed through the hands of the de Maxwell family and into the ownership of Scotland's last Cardinal, David Beaton who was murdered in St. Andrews in 1546. Its association with Cardinal Beaton is still evident as the castle includes a small chapel and the Cardinal's Sitting Room, with its secret staircase to the Great Hall above.
The castle was purchased in 1665 by the Carnegie family, who later became the Earls of Northesk. The 7th Earl was a Vice Admiral and commanded with Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. As a tribute, the Earl was entitled to incorporate Trafalgar in his arms and this can still be seen set in a dormer at Ethie. In 1927 the castle and grounds were bought by Glasgow artist and antique collector William Cunningham Hector.
The castle is reputed to be the basis for the fictional Castle of Knockwhinnock in Sir Walter Scott's novel The Antiquary. Sir Walter Scott was a close friend of William Carnegie, 8th Earl of Northesk and frequently stayed at Ethie Castle.
The castle was restored by the chief of the Forsyth Clan, Alistair Forsyth and it now serves as the clan's seat.
The castle is said to be haunted by a Grey Lady spectre as well as by David Beaton who was Abbot of Arbroath in the 16th Century.References:
The Palazzo Colonna is a palatial block of buildings built in part over ruins of an old Roman Serapeum, and has belonged to the prestigious Colonna family for over twenty generations.
The first part of the palace dates from the 13th century, and tradition holds that the building hosted Dante in his visit to Rome. The first documentary mention notes that the property hosted Cardinal Giovanni and Giacomo Colonna in the 13th century. It was also home to Cardinal Oddone Colonna before he ascended to the papacy as Martin V (1417–1431).
With his passing, the palace was sacked during feuds, and the main property passed into the hands of the Della Rovere family. It returned to the Colonna family when Marcantonio I Colonna married Lucrezia Gara Franciotti Della Rovere, the niece of pope Julius II. The Colonna"s alliance to the Habsburg power, likely protected the palace from looting during the Sack of Rome (1527).
Starting with Filippo Colonna (1578–1639) many changes have refurbished and create a unitary complex around a central garden. Architects including Girolamo Rainaldi and Paolo Marucelli labored on specific projects. Only in the 17th and 18th centuries were the main facades completed. Much of this design was completed by Antonio del Grande (including the grand gallery), and Girolamo Fontana (decoration of gallery). In the 18th century, the long low facade designed by Nicola Michetti with later additions by Paolo Posi with taller corner blocks (facing Piazza Apostoli) was constructed recalls earlier structures resembling a fortification.
The main gallery (completed 1703) and the masterful Colonna art collection was acquired after 1650 by both the cardinal Girolamo I Colonna and his nephew the Connestabile Lorenzo Onofrio Colonna and includes works by Lorenzo Monaco, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Palma the Elder, Salviati, Bronzino, Tintoretto, Pietro da Cortona, Annibale Carracci (painting of The Beaneater), Guercino, Francesco Albani, Muziano and Guido Reni. Ceiling frescoes by Filippo Gherardi, Giovanni Coli, Sebastiano Ricci, and Giuseppe Bartolomeo Chiari celebrate the role of Marcantonio II Colonna in the battle of Lepanto (1571). The gallery is open to the public on Saturday mornings.
The older wing of the complex known as the Princess Isabelle"s apartments, but once housing Martin V"s library and palace, contains frescoes by Pinturicchio, Antonio Tempesta, Crescenzio Onofri, Giacinto Gimignani, and Carlo Cesi. It contains a collection of landscapes and genre scenes by painters like Gaspard Dughet, Caspar Van Wittel (Vanvitelli), and Jan Brueghel the Elder.
Along with the possessions of the Doria-Pamphilij and Pallavacini-Rospigliosi families, this is one of the largest private art collections in Rome.