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This is Northburgh castle, aka Green Castle in the little town of Greencastle in County Donegal, scene of some medieval barbarity in 1333 that had far-reaching consequences. Northburgh was built in 1306 by Richard Og de Burgh, the famous “Red” Earl of Ulster who appears in Lions of the Grail. Standing guard at the mouth of Lough Foyle, it marked the western limit of de Burgh’s Earldom. It was in the territory of the Kingdom of Tyrconnell and was probably supposed to be a bridgehead from which he would march on to the the western Atlantic shore, however that was not to be. In 1315 Edward Bruce took it, but de Burgh won it back. In 1333 it was the scene of some infamous deeds that would lead to the end of the Earldom itself. For some reason, at that time the Anglo-Norman clan of de Burgh seem to have been differentiated by colours. Richard “Og”, Gaelic for “little Richard” (honestly), was known as the “Red” Earl. His cousin, William, was known by the nickname “laith”, which is Gaelic for …

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