January 24, 2012

0106 UNITED KINGDOM (Northern Ireland - Ulster) - Enniskillen Castle

0106 The south tower of Enniskillen Castle

Located between the Upper and Lower sections of Lough Erne, Enniskillen is a little town (13,587inhabitants in 2011) with a rich history. I must to say that James I founded here a free school in 1618, originally called Enniskillen Royal School, and later Portora Royal School. Among many prominent people who attended the courses of this school include two of my favorite writers, Oscar Wilde and Samuel Beckett.

Enniskillen Castle was originally built in the 16th century and now houses the Fermanagh County Museum and the regimental museum of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and the 5th Royal Inniskilling Dragoon Guards. The first fortification was built by Hugh Maguire (in irish Aodh Mag Uidhir), the Lord of Fermanagh during the reign of Elizabeth I and leader of the ancient Maguire clan. Castle had a strategic position, because it guarding one of the few passes into Ulster, and it featured greatly in Irish rebellions against English rule in the 16th century and was taken after an eight day siege in 1594.

Maguire laid siege to it and defeated a relieving force at the Battle of the Ford of the Bicuits at Drumane Bridge and kept the castle until 1607, when it was finally captured by the English, who have remodelled and refurbished it. The south tower, known as the Watergate, was added at this time. In 18th century it served as part of a military barracks, home to the two Inniskilling regiments of which museum houses it in nowadays. Inniskilling is the old name of the town. Details of how the castle look over the years you can find on this very interesting site.

About the stamp
The stamp (the profile of the Queen Elizabeth II in teal) is part of Machin definitive series issued on March 29, 2011:
• blue-green (68p) – it’s on the postcard
• pink (76p)
• sage green (£1.10)
• olive-brown (£1.65)

Note: All the postcards that I receive from Northern Ireland will be attached both to the label "United Kingdom" (to which it belongs of the political point of view) and to the "Ireland" label (by which I understand not only Republic of Ireland, but also the island as a whole).

Enniskillen Castle - Wikipedia

Sender: Desiree Fleming (direct swap)
Sent from Enniskillen (Northern Ireland / United Kingdom), on 16.01.2012
Photo: Roger Kinkead

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