for the devil to hide

Scotland has a few round and a few octagonal churches. The thought behind both unusual forms is the same: in a building without corners, the devil has nowhere to hide. It could of course also have practical or aesthetic reasons but the old myth of the devil hiding in corners is very much alive in... Continue Reading →

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a final moan from the grave

Alexander Grant (Alasdair Mac Iain Bhain) was a poet and a soldier. He grew up near Invermoriston in the small and remote village of Achnaconeran (Achadh nan Conbhairean) to the west of Loch Ness, to be a gifted man of sensitivity and strength, a man of thought as well as action, a bard and a... Continue Reading →

the Gaelic element

In the late 18th century the element Strontium was discovered here, in Ardnamurchan in the tiny Scottish village Strontian, hence the name. The place-name is of Gaelic origin, Sròn an t-Sìthein, meaning nose or point of the fairy hill which makes the chemical element strontium the only one with a Scottish Gaelic etymology. It is therefore... Continue Reading →

black dog at night

Alastair mor a' Bhochdain – Big Sandy of the Ghost Sandy was an enormous man, powerful and commanding and he was a gifted man – he could foretell the future, or rather: he knew somebody who could... Big Sandy lived in Munerigie, just a short walk away from Invergarry House where he used to come... Continue Reading →

walking over someone’s grave

A shudder, a draft, cold sweat, a hunch of death, a tickling of the spine - the feeling that someone is walking over ones grave. A familiar sensation to many of us. As is the phrase. "Someone walked over my grave!" My grave? A definite point on the map of time? The final grid? My... Continue Reading →

Ardchattan’s Murder Victim

This is an ancient monastery, founded nearly 800 years ago by Duncan Mac Dougall, Lord of Lorn. thriving on the shores of Glen Etive it was the center of ecclesiastical life in this area for centuries until Cromwell’s troops burned it down in 1654. The adjacent house and beautiful garden are in private ownership. Here,... Continue Reading →

on Doorie Hill

Flames licking, devouring, purifying, killing. Fire rituals have played a vital role among many cultures in the past. The Vikings sent burning ships into the sea, the Indians burned widows and the Roman Catholics witches. Few of the Rituals have survived in Scotland, the Up Helly Aa on Shetland and the Burning of the Clavie at... Continue Reading →

nevermore

It was one of these late summer days when Scotland feels the coldest: a grey drizzle spread across the country and brought a chill to the bones. Night-time was near and it felt far from reasonable to get out of the car and take pictures of the graveyard in Ardersier. But there it had turned... Continue Reading →

the ghost of a dinosaur

The sun shines bright on the grey headstones of Old Kilmore graveyard in Drumnadrochit. It is an early morning on a hot summer’s day on the shores of Loch Ness. The old graveyard at the back of the little Highland village is just a ten minute walk from the main road that runs along the... Continue Reading →

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