♥ Prisons of War @ Edinburgh Castle ♥

Monday, November 22, 2010

Prisons of War inside Edinburgh Castle is an exhibition focuses on prisoners of war held at the castle during the 18th and early 19th century. Over the centuries, the castle was used to hold state prisoners, and sometimes to put them to death. In medieval times, common criminals were thrown into dungeons beneath the castle. (source)

The Prisons of War exhibition includes artefacts they produced, from a detailed scale model of a warship to forged banknotes. It is quite interesting and I really read about their life & story which written on the board. Let's start exploring.... 

Hammocks hung between wooden frames and this is the place where the prisoners sleep.

Games they played.

Foods they ate.

Grafitti on a prison door and you can't easily break the door. 

Do you know that the prisones' living conditions were regulated by law? They were generally better off than common prisoners. COME! Let's start explore the prison life. It is really interesting to know more about it. It actually have 5 things you would need to know - rations, health care, allowance, going home and passing time.

Each prisoner received a daily ration of 2 pints (1100mm) of beer, 1 and half pounds (680g) of bread, 3/4 pound (340g) of beef, half pint (280mm) of pease every other day, 1/4 pound (110g) of butter and 6 ounces (170g) of cheese instead of beef on Saturdays. Beside that, because the Americans were officially regarded as pirates, so they received only 1 pound (560g) of bread a day.

Health Care:-
A surgeon was assigned to each British prison of war. The surgeon of this prison was John Thompson, who regularly attended the prisoners here and converted a house in Edinburgh into a temporary hospital for sick prisoners.

Each prisoner was given clothes and 6 pence a day. IN addition, French prisoners received an extra penny a day and clothes from their own government.

Going Home:-
By 1781, the huge number of prisoners here in Edinburgh Castle forced the British to agree to exchange them for captured British soldiers. That summer about 500 French, Spanish and Dutch were repatriated. Once again the American prisoners lost out, for there was no such agreement with the "rebels".

Passing Time:-
Gambling helped to while away the long days of captivity. Prisoners probably used the chess sets, backgammon boards, dice, dominoes and drafts that they made for sale. Some prisoners would gamble on anything - even the time it took for a rat to appear from its hole in the wall.
Basically, this is the life of the prisoners in Edinburgh Castle. Actually, their life were not bad and they were treated in a real good way. The best was, they will get some money even they were in the prison.

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  1. Yalor... I want to be a prisoner too!!!

  2. Despite living in Edinburgh for two years, I have never been to the Castle. ;) Ha ha... How ironic!?

  3. Nice photos! I wanna go there too, some day :P


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