Saturday, March 26, 2011

Medieval Priory Wall - Musket Ball Holes?

The brown/red stonework on the left of the entrance door to historic Lanercost Priory is a little unusual. It is peppered with holes ... but these are no ordinary holes. Look at them close up and they are a uniform round shape - as would have been made if musket balls had been fired at the wall.

According to a local historian that we spoke to, no-one seems to know for sure when and how they got there but one theory is that the holes could have been made by soldiers camped nearby during the Jacobite Risings who needed somewhere for target practice. We have found no evidence to substantiate this (as yet) but if true, it just goes to show what medieval architecture has to be able to withstand!

You can see the holes close up in our video clip on the medieval castles video channel

* Read more about the Jacobite Rebellion in the immediate area on this Knol article about Hadrian's Wall

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