Dirleton can claim to be one of the most beautiful villages in Scotland, and in fact, visiting this wee beauty you might start to wonder how you ended up in a Scottish episode of Midsomer Murders. Gardens are blooming everywhere, little houses are well-kept and people live happily ever after. Murders exist on TV only, in Midsomer Somewhere. Think again again, Dirleton has murder connections of its own....
Black Agnes – the Silky Defendress
Agnes was the daughter of a great father who had fought with King Robert the Bruce at Bannockburn, and in the following decades, continued to make military forays into England. He was a hero. After Bruce’s death, he was Regent of Scotland for a while.
Like her father, Agnes’s husband was in constant combat against the English. If he was on one of his military forays, then it was up to Agnes to manage the castle, and if necessary, to defend it. She was put to the test in 1338, when an English army under the command of the Earl of Salisbury approached, trying to take castle. A castle in which there were hardly any men left, just women and children.
Funny Scottish epitaphs – the mason
headstone of James Humphrey (1755 - 1844) Below thir stanes lie Jamie's banes' O Death, It's my opinion, Thou ne'er took such bleth'ran bitch Into thy dark dominian. Raymond Lamont-Brown: Scottish Epitaphs. Edinburgh, Chambers, 1990
one man on an island
Largo Parish Church Scotland has almost 20,000 kilometres of coastline and encompasses almost 800 islands, so naturally the Scots have a very special affinity to water and the sea. The sea has inspired some incredible stories of adventures, monsters and heroes. However, one of the best-known stories was told by an Englishman. Daniel Defoe wrote... Continue Reading →
the Abernethy mysteries
cross-shaped gravestone in Abernethy graveyard Considering the abundance of historical graveyards in Scotland, Abernethy does not seem of utmost importance at first sight. But, as you might know yourself, looks might be deceiving and Abernethy is indeed an exceptional graveyard. Not so much because of its headstones or famous people buried there but because of... Continue Reading →
Halloween re-post:a pale white hand that started bleeding
Edzell is a quaint wee village, its graveyards peaceful and pretty, but appearance can be deceiving, especially here in Edzell. For a start, the village Edzell is not really the village Edzell at all. Edzell was lost during the centuries and the Georgian planned town of today, was originally called Slateford. It took the name... Continue Reading →
clan burial customs
MacSorlie graveyard Glen Nevis MacSorlie graveyard in Glen Nevis A Scottish clan is a group of people wo believe they share the same ancestor. A clan is far more than family. In the Highlands they were a political unit as well, a source of support and defence. A sept or a branch, however, is somthing... Continue Reading →
Bane, bone and stone
This is a graveyard well worth visiting, because of the view of the Sound of Gigha, because of the abundance of beautiful old headstones and because this is an ancient place of worship, established 800 years ago in 1222. A few years later Alexander II gave it to the bishoprick of Argyll.
the horrors of Lindores Abbey
Lindores Abbey is now not more than a few crumbling walls. However, signs within the romantic ruin point to a darker past. Many a death has occurred here. Many bodies were take to this place. This was once a graveyard to the rich, the famous and the ill-fated. These are the horrors of Lindores Abbey.
keys to the graves
It is not unusual, to find a Scottish graveyard locked up overnight, especially in city centres. Too much damage and destruction has happened in the past and is still happening today. Vandals causing even more grief for the families of the deceased by damaging ground and headstones alike. Drug and alcohol use are also frequent problems on graveyards in urban environments. Historical churchyards are often locked by the councils and taphophiles will often try in vain to gain access. Locking them up of course often seems feasible, after all, there is no need to visit a churchyard for example at night.