ghost of a spinster

Lady Louisa of Traquair was the 15th and last of the Lairds of Traquair. She had remained unmarried for all her long life and when she died at the age of 99 the estate went to the female line of the family, the Maxwell Stuarts. Her predecessor, the 14th Laird of Traquair had no head... Continue Reading →

seven slain brothers

The Douglas clan was a powerful one in ancient Scotland, respected and sometimes feared. Mothers would use the name to pressure their children: Be good or the black Douglas will get you. They were called Black Douglas, for their inclination as well as their complexion; they were a rather dark-skinned family. One of the many... Continue Reading →

Dalserf hogback stone

Upper Clydesdale is geographically determined by the River Clyde, the longest river in the United Kingdom. It has contributed much to the industrialization of the region; the model city of New Lanark personifies that like no other. But away from the industrial centres, Lanarkshire is quiet and pretty. There is something to discover everywhere. Dalserf... Continue Reading →

eight funeral services

Carluke cemetery Carluke can boast of having been useful in World War II like no other town in Lanarkshire. Since the entire town at that time was on one side of the railroad, it was easy to identify it from the air and used as a turning point for pilots on their training flights before... Continue Reading →

trysts and leylines

History Albeit feeling rather small, Crieff is one of the largest towns in Perthshire. The dominating force behind the settlement were the Earls of Perth. The Earl being traditionally the chief of clan Drummond, therefore Crieff was known as Drummond in the 17th century.  After having been destroyed in 1716 by Jacobites fighting at Sheriffmuir... Continue Reading →

Jacobite hideout

Mill Street Old Burial Ground, Ullapool The burial ground in Ullapool’s Mill Street is called old but it is in fact fairly new. Ullapool is fairly new, it was designed and constructed in the late 18th century. This is a burial ground and not a graveyard or kirkyard, where the burial place is part of... Continue Reading →

black monks

The original Celtic church had no organization, as the new Church of Rome gained in influence, things changed in Scotland. The medieval church saw much innovation. With the beginning of the 12th century influences from abroad began to shape its structure. The Celtic monks disappeared, the Benedictine monks gained influence. The Culdees were the last... Continue Reading →

on a winter’s day

Sometimes Scotland overwhelms you with an incredible infusion of light, especially in winter when the days are short and the sun is a rare event in grey times. Light that sparks the joy of being. Just like that. Even on a graveyard. Daviot church on an afternoon in January can be breathtaking, in any other... Continue Reading →

Scottish epitaph fail

Erected to the memory of John McFarlane Drown'd in the Water of Leith By a few affectionate friends Hamish Brown: A Scottish Graveyard Miscellany. Exploring the Folk Art of Scotland's Gravestones. Birlinn; 2008

Biggar Chatty Lady

On a cold pillow lies her head Yet it will rise again ‘tis said; So prudently reader how thy walk For if she rise again she’ll talk! Raymond Lamont-Brown: Scottish Epitaphs. Edinburgh, Chambers; 1990  

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