It is not known exactly how long a castle has been on the site of Teaninich Castle but it is thought to date back to at least the 16th century. In the 16th century, the lands in which Teaninich Castle is situated was an area known as Fyrish. In 1589, the lower quarter of the Fyrish lands were acquired from Keith of Delny by Hugh Munro 1st of Teaninich, son of John Munro 3rd of Coul, whose grandfather Hugh Munro 1st of Coul was a son of George Munro, 10th Baron of Foulis (d.1452). These lands at first were just the lower quarter of Fyrish but eventually extended eastward towards the River Alness and Teaninich Castle was bought by the Munros in February 1660. The receipt for which is still preserved in the Teaninich Charter Chest.
Two worn lintel stones dated 1734 and 1770 built into the rear of the present castle cum mansion suggest an earlier building of some size and style. Part of the old Teaninich Castle was pulled down by Hugh Munro of Teaninich, 78th Highlanders, who lost the sight in both of his eyes in Nijmegen, the Netherlands in 1794.
However, later, he occupied himself with improving his farmlands and rebuilding Teaninich Castle. The Blind Captain or blind laird, as he became known, took an enthusiastic interest in the supervision of the building of the present Teaninich Castle, often pacing out the room sizes himself. The asymmetry of the rooms is proof of his “enthusiasm”.
He founded the Teaninich distillery on the estate in 1817 and laid out the village of Alness at a time when illegal whisky gave the best return on the barley crops of Ross-shire. In 1831, Hugh Munro sold the castle to his brother General John Munro, 9th of Teaninich and spent the remainder of his life in Coul Cottage, the dower house of Teaninich. He died in 1846. The castle remained in the Munro family until 1923. Teaninich remained a Munro seat until after the First World War when it was bought by an American, Charles Harrison, the man on whom Frances Hodgson Burnett's book 'Little Lord Fauntleroy' was based. He is best remembered for the large American car he drove.
In present day, the Teaninich Castle is a hotel. In 2007, Teaninich House sold off 10 acres (40,000 m2) of paddock land immediately behind the house onto which a Property Developer is currently installing 36 houses. Further developments are expected, potentially involving the selling off and cutting down of the remaining woodland to the rear and northeast border of the house and garden ground, thus bringing the already extensive housing estate closer to the property.
As of August 2013 the property was being offered for sale, by agents CKD Galbraith, for £875,000.References:
The Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba, also known as the Great Mosque of Córdoba and the Mezquita is regarded as one of the most accomplished monuments of Moorish architecture.
According to a traditional account, a small Visigoth church, the Catholic Basilica of Saint Vincent of Lérins, originally stood on the site. In 784 Abd al-Rahman I ordered construction of the Great Mosque, which was considerably expanded by later Muslim rulers. The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd al-Rahman II ordered a new minaret, while in 961 Al-Hakam II enlarged the building and enriched the Mihrab. The last of such reforms was carried out by Almanzor in 987. It was connected to the Caliph"s palace by a raised walkway, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for previous Islamic rulers – as well as Christian Kings who built their palaces adjacent to churches. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 with the completion of the outer naves and courtyard.
In 1236, Córdoba was conquered by King Ferdinand III of Castile, and the centre of the mosque was converted into a Catholic cathedral. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features, such as King Henry II rebuilding the chapel in the 14th century. The minaret of the mosque was also converted to the bell tower of the cathedral. It was adorned with Santiago de Compostela"s captured cathedral bells. Following a windstorm in 1589, the former minaret was further reinforced by encasing it within a new structure.
The most significant alteration was the building of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the expansive structure. The insertion was constructed by permission of Charles V, king of Castile and Aragon. Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.
The building"s floor plan is seen to be parallel to some of the earliest mosques built from the very beginning of Islam. It had a rectangular prayer hall with aisles arranged perpendicular to the qibla, the direction towards which Muslims pray. The prayer hall was large and flat, with timber ceilings held up by arches of horseshoe-like appearance.
In planning the mosque, the architects incorporated a number of Roman columns with choice capitals. Some of the columns were already in the Gothic structure; others were sent from various regions of Iberia as presents from the governors of provinces. Ivory, jasper, porphyry, gold, silver, copper, and brass were used in the decorations. Marvellous mosaics and azulejos were designed. Later, the immense temple embodied all the styles of Morisco architecture into one composition.
The building is most notable for its arcaded hypostyle hall, with 856 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, granite and porphyry. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple that had occupied the site previously, as well as other Roman buildings, such as the Mérida amphitheatre. The double arches were an innovation, permitting higher ceilings than would otherwise be possible with relatively low columns. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch.