The Castle for the Covenant!
Next edition dates to be announced (the event was last held in 2015)
Edinburgh, the capital city of Scotland, is located in Lothian, a region of the Scottish Lowlands, lying between the southern shore of the Firth of Forth and the Lammermuir Hills. Edinburgh, which is the second most populous city in Scotland and the seventh most populous in the United Kingdom, boasts a quite rich history that can be discovered in castles, stately homes and several heritage sites, including battlefields. The city has ancient historical roots as witnessed by the archaeological evidence of a Mesolithic camp-site dating to 8500 BC, while traces of later Bronze Age and Iron Age settlements have been found as well in the area. The Old and New Towns of Edinburgh were listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995 in recognition of the unique character of the Old Town with its medieval street layout and the planned Georgian New Town. Edinburgh and its region offer a wealth of exciting possibilities and activities for tourists, including wonderful nature and outstanding architectures, many attractions and outdoor pursuits as well as world-famous festivals like the Edinburgh Military Tattoo, the Edinburgh International Science Festival, the Hogmanay celebration and the Beltane Fire Festival.
An amazing landmark of Edinburgh and also a powerful Scottish national symbol is the Edinburgh Castle majestically standing on top of a 340-million-year-old extinct volcanic rock. Over the centuries around 23 different siege attempts were made on Edinburgh Castle, making it the most besieged place in Europe. The castle was at the centre of several important events throughout the Scottish History, and especially in the 16th and 17th centuries, including the so-called War of the Covenants. The Covenanters were a Scottish Presbyterian movement deriving their name from the term covenant after the Covenant between God and the Israelites in the Old Testament. In 1603, King James VI of Scotland succeeded to the English throne, uniting the crowns of Scotland and England in a personal union known as the Union of the Crowns.
In 1638, King Charles I's attempt to introduce Anglican church forms in Scotland, imposing the Episcopacy on the Scottish Church, encountered the strong opposition by the Presbyterians, leading to a civil war which broke out between the King's forces and the Presbyterian Covenanters in 1639, part of the so-called Wars of the Three Kingdoms. This term is referred to an intertwined series of uprisings and conflicts that took place in England, Ireland and Scotland between 1639 and 1651, including the Bishops' Wars of 1639 and 1640, the Scottish Civil War of 1644–45; the Irish Rebellion of 1641, Confederate Ireland, 1642–49 and the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland in 1649 (collectively the Eleven Years War or Irish Confederate Wars); and the First, Second and Third English Civil Wars of 1642–46, 1648–49 and 1650–51.
The Edinburgh Castle hosts regular re-enactments of events from its history, occasional concerts by big-name performers, while in August, the Castle Esplanade is the venue for the world-famous Military Tattoo. In October the Castle of Edinburgh is home to a great historical reenactment, “The Castle for the Covenant!” which allows the visitors to enjoy the chance to step back more than 370 years in time and experience what 17th-century siege warfare might have been like, as one of the longest sieges is brought to life at Edinburgh Castle. Reenactors, historical costumed performers and living interpreters mark in fact the siege of 1640, when the castle’s royalist garrison (loyal to King Charles l) are besieged by the Covenanters’ army trying to capture the castle. The king's men have held out for three months and the lack of food, water and an outbreak of disease are forcing them to consider surrender thus allowing the Covenanters to take the castle again, after the first successful attempt in 1639, when the Covenanters managed to capture Edinburgh Castle after a short siege.
The today event will be based on accounts and information from the real 1640 siege, and will depict the key moments and tactics used in the attempt to conquer the iconic stronghold. Visitors will have the chance to learn more about the real problems that the King's men faced during the battle, including the lack of fresh supplies and the outbreak of disease, which resulted in the surrender of the castle to the Covenanters. Besides living history displays and guided tours at the historical camps will provide a unique chance to discover what the life of a soldier of the period might have been like - for both the defenders and the attackers. The visitors will be able to follow as well accurate military manoeuvres and drills from the era, and experience an exciting display of cannon and musket firepower.
Please contact the Organizers for confirmation and further details.
Info & Contact
Historic Scotland / Historic Environment Scotland
Address: Longmore House, Salisbury Place, Edinburgh, EH9 1SH Scotland
Tel.: +44 (0)131 668 8830 - 668 8852
Event page: http://www.historic-scotland.gov.uk/news_article.htm?articleid=47405
Tel.: +44 (0)131 225 9846
Event web page: http://edinburghcastle.gov.uk/events/the-castle-for-the-covenant!.aspx
Edinburgh City Council
Address: Waverley Court, 4 East Market Street Edinburgh, Scotland
Tel.: +44 (0)131 200 2000
E-mail: contact form available online
This is Edinburgh by Marketing Edinburgh Ltd
Address: 26 Frederick Street Edinburgh EH2 2JR, Scotland
Tel.: +44 (0)131 473 3666
Edinburgh - The official Tourist Board – Visit Scotland
Image: Edinburgh Castle
Text sources: Historic Scotland, Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh City Council, Wkipedia
Edinburgh and its castle on Google Maps:
Video reportages and promos of the event: