Castle Stuart became a derelict ruin for almost 300 years, empty - except for the ghosts, which were said to have haunted the property.
When Mary Queen of Scots returned to Scotland in 1561, after the death of her husband; the Dauphin of France, she gave this land to her half-brother, James Stuart, granted him the title 'Earl of Moray' and he ruled Scotland as Regent for her. Unfortunately he was murdered and the 2nd Earl of Moray was also murdered - stabbed to death 13 times. Thus James Stuart, 3rd Earl of Moray, finally completed Castle Stuart in 1625. He married Anne Gordon - it was her father, the Earl of Huntly, who stabbed to death his father, the 2nd Earl of Moray. It is thought that he built the castle for protection from his in-laws.