Today’s Haughty Yet Truly Morbid Fact!
Ornate gate pillars frame the ivied ruins of Baldoon Castle, which stands on a desolate stretch of the Scottish Lowlands some eighty miles south of Glasgow. In the mid-seventeenth century, Baldoon was the setting for a tragic tale that was later memorialized by Sir Walter Scott in his novel The Bride of Lammermoor.
The true story involved the family of Sir James Dalrymple, an eminent jurist and statesman. His eldest daughter was the beautiful Janet Dalrymple, who before she came of age, secretly pledged her troth to a poor young nobleman, Lord Rutherford. Janet’s parents disapproved of the match. Particularly antagonistic was her mother, a haughty woman whose dictates even her husband dared not cross. Helpless before her mother’s steely will, Janet broke faith with her true love and agreed to marry the man her parents chose for her – Rutherford’s nephew, David Dunbar, the heir of Baldoon. With sad resignation, Janet married Dunbar on August 24, 1669.
There are several versions of what happened on Janet’s wedding night, but the best known is this: There was a great bridal feast and ball at Baldoon, during which the bride and groom retired, as was the custom. Soon thereafter, wedding guests heard shrieks coming from the nuptial chamber. Breaking down its door, they found Dunbar lying across the threshold, blood streaming from stab wounds. His bride, her gown stained with his blood, was huddled in a corner, muttering to herself, obviously quite mad. The only coherent words she was heard to say were, “Tak up your bonny bridegroom.” Dunbar survived, but Janet died within a month. It is said that her gore-dappled ghost still haunts Baldoon, perhaps in expiation, perhaps searching for her lost love.
Culled from: Mysteries of the Unknown: Hauntings
Ghastly: White Shorts Edition
New York Crime Scene Photograph culled from Harms Way. (Sadly, no explanation provided.)