The extremely dangerous state of the building has meant that, for many of us who live locally, the courtyard of Mingary Castle remained a mystery. The building isn't overlooked, so it's impossible to see across the high walls from the land, so the only information available came from from sites like Canmore, here, and the the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland's book, 'Argyll Volume 3'. So I felt very privileged indeed to join the archaeologists in the castle on Wednesday and be shown by Tom Addyman some of the main features of this fascinating monument.
The above, much simplified diagram was compiled some years ago from the RCAHMS book. It shows the interior buildings to be in three 'ranges'.
I am no archaeologist but, having spent two hours in the building, I was overwhelmed by the story that experts can tell from a detailed the study of these crumbling walls. But as much remains a mystery. For example, the left-hand room in the last picture is plastered, and this has clear evidence of a thin partition running right across the room just to the left of the door, so there appears to have been a tiny 'entrance hall'. Why?