Balthayock Castle is a medieval tower built in late 14th century. It is said to have been owned by family of Blair since the time of William I (1165-1214). It was very ruinous prior to 1870. James Maclaren saved the tower by building the present battlements, modern roof, caphouse, forestair to the entrance and also altered the interior. It was inhabited until the middle of the last century. It is now unoccupied but is in good condition.

In September 1594 James VI raised a force against the northern earls and met them at the battle of Glenlivet. When he was at Perth, Euphemia Douglas, the wife of the Master of Glamis wrote to Alexander Blair, laird of Balthayock asking him to come with Glamis Castle with his followers, armed and ready to follow the king to the north. In 1599 the young laird of Balthayock and Lawrence Blair with William Row, kirk minister at Kinnoull, were captured at Kinross by the Lord Sanquhar and imprisoned for two weeks.

The walls of castle are almost 10 ft thick and are made of sandstone and whin rubble. On the castle's east side an armorial panel displaying the date 1370 is present on the side of the stone stair. Another armorial with the initials AB (Blair) GM dated 1578 is located at the castle's southeast corner over an archway. Tusking in the building indicates the presence of a barmkin(tower house). The main block of the castle consists of three storeys, an attic and a wing of two storeys; the first floor of the wing is divided into a chamber and hall. It was remodelled in 1870 with the addition of a forestair, crenallated parapet and cap-house. It is now uninhibited but it is in considerably good condition.

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Founded: 14th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in United Kingdom

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Heraclea Lyncestis

Heraclea Lyncestis was an ancient Greek city in Macedon, ruled later by the Romans. It was founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC. The city was named in honor of the mythological hero Heracles. The name Lynkestis originates from the name of the ancient kingdom, conquered by Philip, where the city was built.

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The Roman emperor Hadrian built a theatre in the center of the town, on a hill, when many buildings in the Roman province of Macedonia were being restored. It began being used during the reign of Antoninus Pius. Inside the theatre there were three animal cages and in the western part a tunnel. The theatre went out of use during the late 4th century AD, when gladiator fights in the Roman Empire were banned, due to the spread of Christianity, the formulation of the Eastern Roman Empire, and the abandonment of, what was then perceived as, pagan rituals and entertainment.

Late Antiquity and Byzantine periods

In the early Byzantine period (4th to 6th centuries AD) Heraclea was an important episcopal centre. A small and a great basilica, the bishop"s residence, and a funerary basilica and the necropolis are some of the remains of this period. Three naves in the Great Basilica are covered with mosaics of very rich floral and figurative iconography; these well preserved mosaics are often regarded as fine examples of the early Christian art period.

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