Colonising the West

Isle of Lewis Towards the end of the 16th century, the Isle of Lewis was a wild, unruly, and apparently rather vicious place. At least, that’s what King James VI thought. Perhaps this was indeed true, but more likely it was royal propaganda, cleverly circulated to morally justify the actions that followed. If the king... Continue Reading →

a hero’s graveyard

Zecharia’s Cemetery (Cill Sgàire) in Bragar, Isle of Lewis Zechariah or Zacharay Macaulay’s father was the Chamberlain of Lewis and owned the land around Valtos, Kneep and Reef. Zachary lived in the first part of the 18th century. He grew up to be a hero and well remembered in the oral tradition of Lewis. The... Continue Reading →

at the end of the road

Harris and Lewis are connected by one long major road, the backbone of the Longisle, really. Any time you detour from it, be it towards the West or towards the East, you are bound to discover things. Heading north from Tarbert, the first junction takes you to the western most point of Harris – Hushinish... Continue Reading →

an axe wound, mass murder and lust

St Clement’s church, Rodel, Isle of Harris St Clement’s was built as a catholic church under David I, probably by one of the MacLeods of Harris but falling into disuse soon after completion. The Reformation had put an end to Catholicism on the island. It had most likely been a priory, two allegedly excisted on... Continue Reading →

Burn the church!

“Bar the door and burn the church down.” murmured the MacDonald through the sound of singing, that oozed through the walls of the little church. The sun was out, the wind forcefully as ever, making the long haired raiders look even more fierce. They held their weapons ready, at the back of the church, away... Continue Reading →

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