Mains Castle castle consists of several buildings surrounding a courtyard, although several of the original western buildings no longer exist. The northern and eastern buildings are where the family would have lived, with the servants occupying the southern quarters. The castle also has a large, six-floor, square tower house with dressed cornerstones, which is typical of 16th-century construction.
The castle is located in Dundee's Caird Park to the north of the city overlooking the Dichty valley and adjacent to a small stream known as the Gelly Burn. On the opposite side of the burn is located the mausoleum of the Graham family and the Main's cemetery, which was formerly the site of the district's kirk.
The castle is believed to have been built in 1562 by Sir David Graham, nephew of Cardinal Beaton. A keystone in the western gateway bears this date as well as the initials DG and DMO for David Graham and Dame Margaret Ogilvy. A horizontal beam in one of the eastern courtyard doors bears a date of 1582, indicating a possible completion date. The castle was the seat of the Grahams of Fintry and remained so until the 19th century when Robert Graham of Fintry sold the lands to David Erskine, with the condition that his family could retain the territorial title of Graham of Fintry and that the estate revert to the older name of Lumlathen or Linlathen. The estate was later sold by Shipley Gordon Stuart Erskine to James Key Caird, who gifted the castle and its lands to the town council as a site for a public park in 1913. The park was later opened in 1923 by Caird's half sister Mrs. Marryat. The castle was renovated in the 1980s through a government scheme for the unemployed, as many of the buildings had become roofless.References:
Les Invalides is a complex of buildings containing museums and monuments, all relating to the military history of France, as well as a hospital and a retirement home for war veterans, the building"s original purpose. The buildings house the Musée de l"Armée, the military museum of the Army of France, the Musée des Plans-Reliefs, and the Musée d"Histoire Contemporaine, as well as the burial site for some of France"s war heroes, notably Napoleon Bonaparte.
Louis XIV initiated the project in 1670, as a home and hospital for aged and unwell soldiers: the name is a shortened form of hôpital des invalides. The architect of Les Invalides was Libéral Bruant. The enlarged project was completed in 1676, the river front measured 196 metres and the complex had fifteen courtyards. Jules Hardouin Mansart assisted the aged Bruant, and the chapel was finished in 1679 to Bruant"s designs after the elder architect"s death.
Shortly after the veterans" chapel was completed, Louis XIV commissioned Mansart to construct a separate private royal chapel referred to as the Église du Dôme from its most striking feature. Inspired by St. Peter"s Basilica in Rome, the original for all Baroque domes, it is one of the triumphs of French Baroque architecture. The domed chapel is centrally placed to dominate the court of honour. It was finished in 1708.
Because of its location and significance, the Invalides served as the scene for several key events in French history. On 14 July 1789 it was stormed by Parisian rioters who seized the cannons and muskets stored in its cellars to use against the Bastille later the same day. Napoleon was entombed under the dome of the Invalides with great ceremony in 1840. In December 1894 the degradation of Captain Alfred Dreyfus was held before the main building, while his subsequent rehabilitation ceremony took place in a courtyard of the complex in 1906.
The building retained its primary function of a retirement home and hospital for military veterans until the early twentieth century. In 1872 the musée d"artillerie (Artillery Museum) was located within the building to be joined by the Historical Museum of the Armies in 1896. The two institutions were merged to form the present musée de l"armée in 1905. At the same time the veterans in residence were dispersed to smaller centres outside Paris. The reason was that the adoption of a mainly conscript army, after 1872, meant a substantial reduction in the numbers of veterans having the twenty or more years of military service formerly required to enter the Hôpital des Invalides. The building accordingly became too large for its original purpose. The modern complex does however still include the facilities detailed below for about a hundred elderly or incapacitated former soldiers.