Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Castle, a Cathedral a Guild House and Museum Art Gallery

Apparently, Carlisle is the only English town not listed on the Magna Carta, as, at the time of writing (1215) it was still a Scottish town. Carlisle was a Roman settlement, established to serve the forts on Hadrian's Wall. During the Middle Ages, because of its proximity to the Kingdom of Scotland, Carlisle became an important military stronghold; after the Castle was built in 1092 by William Rufus. It once served as a prison for Mary, Queen of Scots.

It was eerie in the castle and a couple of the displays and features were incredibly haunting. Jacobites loyal to Scotland were hanged, drawn and quartered, meaning the condemned prisoner would be: Dragged on a hurdle (a wooden frame) to the place of execution.Hanged by the neck for a short time or until almost dead then, disembowelled and emasculated and the genitalia and entrails burned before the condemned's eyes , then The body divided into four parts, then beheaded (quartered).Typically, the resulting five parts (i.e. the four quarters of the body and the head) were gibbeted (put on public display) in different parts of the city, town, or, in famous cases, in the country, to deter would-be traitors who had not seen the execution.
Man’s inhumanity to inhumanity never fails to shock me.
The legendary licking stones are in the dank basement where prisoners would lick the wall for moisture.

The Curse of Carlisle is a 16th century curse that was first invoked by Archbishop Dunbar of Glasgow in 1525 against cross-border families, known as the Border Reivers, who lived by stealing cattle and pillage. The curse was not directly aimed at Carlisle or its people. For the millennium celebrations, the local council commissioned a 14-tonne granite artwork inscribed with all 1,069 words of the curse.
In 1998 some Christians, among other projects, began campaigning to prevent the City of Carlisle from installing the stone. In the wake of this controversy, superstition about the stone grew and a number of the town's setbacks were blamed on the curse stone, including an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease, a flood, various crimes, rising unemployment statistics and even the fate of Carlisle United, which was relegated out of its league.

The castle now houses the Duke of Lancaster's Regiment and the Border Regiment Museum. In the early 12th century Henry I allowed the foundation of a priory in Carlisle. The town gained the status of a diocese in 1122, and the priory became Carlisle Cathedral.

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