Behind the Queen’s Scottish residence of Holyrood Palace lies the resident Abbey. Built by King David I in 1127, it has inspired artists, musicians and poets throughout Europe with its haunting, aging majesty. According to legend, Kind David I was hunting through the forest when his horse was startled by a stag. The king was saved from the aggressive animal by the miraculous apparition of a cross between its antlers. In thanksgiving to God he founded Holyrood Abbey; Holyrood basically meaning Holy Cross. In the 16th century, as a result of war, the roof was destroyed and the interior plundered. After many attempts at poor reconstruction, a storm finally brought down the roof one last time and it remained so ever since.
This was the place that inspired Mendelssohn’s ode to Scotland.
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