The volcanic crag that dominates Stirling was probably fortified from ancient times, but the importance of Stirling Castle as a royal residence peaked in the 16th century. Around 1500, James IV added new buildings including the vast Great Hall. The elegant Chapel Royal was built by James VI in 1594. But the heart of Stirling Castle is the spectacular Palace, commissioned by James V in the 1530s. Its exuberant design drew on the fashions of the European Renaissance to express James's power and sophistication. Following a major programme of research, Historic Scotland has re-presented the Palace interiors as they might have looked when James V's grand scheme was completed.
This book also includes a guide to Argyll's Lodging and Mar's Wark, grand residences occupied by major nobles near castle.