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The Bartholf Room

This is the first in a series giving details of the rooms throughout the castle. The pictures below show the Bartholf Room as it is currently.

The Bartholf Room is styled as a later medieval laird’s chamber.

This room is named in honour of Bartholf, a Hungarian nobleman and the founding member of Clan Leslie. The Leslies owned Lickleyhead Castle in both the middle ages and for most of the twentieth century.

Bartholf was a member of the court of Edgar Atheling, of the deposed English House of Wessex. Fleeing the conquering Normans in 1068, their ship was blown off course, landing in Scotland where they were welcomed by King Donald III of Canmore. The King cemented an alliance with the pretender by marrying his sister, Margaret in 1070. Bartholf elected to stay in Scotland, winning the Scottish King’s favour and eventually rising to the honour of ‘Governor of Edinburgh Castle’. He was also put in charge of protecting Margaret; the story goes that Bartholf saved the Queen’s life. They were out riding together when Margaret nearly fell from her horse, rescued at the last moment when Bartholf handed her the end of his belt. His instruction was to ‘grip fast’ to the belt, after which he pulled her to safety.

Bartholf was granted land in Aberdeenshire and his family continued to live in the county. His descendant, Andrew Leslie of Edingarioch (an old name for this area), was a signatory to the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320, the famous letter sent to the Pope in defence of Scottish independence.

The Bartholf Room has served numerous purposes down the years. It was previously a living room and a gun room before that. This part of the castle was built in the Victorian era by the Lumsden family as an extension to the East Wing. The current en suite bathroom was formerly the boot room.

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