Siege of Culloden House (1745)

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Siege of Culloden House 1745
Part of the Jacobite rising of 1745
Culloden House (old).jpg
Culloden House as it appeared during the Jacobite rising of 1745. It was remodeled between 1772 and 1778 and today is a hotel
Date15 – 16 October 1745
Inverness-shire, Scotland
Result British-Hanoverian victory
Union flag 1606 (Kings Colors).svg Scottish Hanoverians: Independent Highland Companies Jacobite Standard (1745).svg Jacobites:
Clan Fraser of Lovat
Commanders and leaders
Union flag 1606 (Kings Colors).svg Duncan Forbes, Lord Culloden Jacobite Standard (1745).svg Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat [1]
James Fraser of Foyers [1] [2]
200 men [1]
Casualties and losses
None 1 killed [3]
1 wounded [3] [4]

The Siege of Culloden House took place on the night of 15/16 October 1745 and was part of the Jacobite rising of 1745. 200 men of the Jacobite Clan Fraser of Lovat attempted to capture Duncan Forbes, Lord Culloden who was the Lord President of the Court of Session, the most senior legal officer in Scotland.



Simon Fraser, 11th Lord Lovat, chief of the Clan Fraser of Lovat, had for a long time held back in committing himself to the Jacobite cause. [1] However, he sent one of his leading clansmen, James Fraser of Foyers, to kidnap Duncan Forbes, Lord Culloden who was the leader of the British-Hanoverian cause in the north-east of Scotland. [1]

The siege

200 of the Stratherrick Frasers advanced on the battlemented Culloden House. [1] However, according to historian Christopher Duffy they scampered off when they came under fire. [1] As the Jacobites approached they were met with a rally of gunfire and a Swivel gun was also used to fire at them. [4] [3] The Jacobites fled and suffered one man killed. [3] A search of the area the next day found another Jacobite who was wounded and who confessed that they had been led by James Fraser of Foyers and had been sent by Lord Lovat. [4] [3] According to Alexander Mackenzie's History of the Frasers of Lovat, the Stratherrick men failed to take Culloden House, referring to it as the Castle of Culloden, which was strongly fortified and had several pieces of cannon on its ramparts. [5]


Lord Loudoun (John Campbell, 4th Earl of Loudoun) who supported the British-Hanoverian Government, suspecting the loyalty of Lord Lovat, sent an expedition to Castle Downie on 11 December 1745 where they captured Lovat and brought him back as a prisoner to Inverness. [1] However, Lovat escaped to freedom on the night of 19 December 1745. [1] According to historian Ruairidh MacLeod, the reaction in the Highlands to the unsuccessful attempt of James Fraser of Foyers to capture or kill the Lord President Forbes at Culloden House, was of profound shock. [6]

In April 1746, the Jacobite leader Charles Edward Stuart requisitioned Culloden House and used it as his headquarters in the days leading up to the more famous Battle of Culloden that brought an end to the Jacobite rising. [7]

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  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Duffy, Christoper (2007). The '45, Bonnie Prince Charlie and Untold Story of the Jacobite Rising. p. 356. ISBN   978-0-7538-2262-3.
  2. Reid, Stuart (2012). The Scottish Jacobite Army 1745–46. Bloomsbury Publishing. p. 20.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 "Duncan Forbes, Lord Culloden". Culloden Battlefield. Retrieved 19 October 2018.
  4. 1 2 3 Warrand, Duncan (1929). More Culloden Papers (PDF). 4. Inverness: Robert Carruthers & Sons. pp. 103–104.
  5. Mackenzie, Alexander (1896). History of the Frasers of Lovat, with genealogies of the principal families of the name: to which is added those of Dunballoch and Phopachy. Inverness: A. & W. Mackenzie. pp.  384-385.
  6. MacLeod, Ruairidh. H. F.S.A. Scot (1984). Transactions of the Gaelic Society of Inverness. Volume LIII. p. 314. Quoting: Dr Duncan Fraser to Lord Loudoun, 8am, 16th Oct 1745 (Loudoun Papers 11543) and to Rev. David Ross, 19th Oct 1745 (More Culloden Papers, 4, p.103)
  7. "Old Culloden House". Retrieved 19 October 2018.

See also