Red and Strong Is the Blood

THE HARP OF THE GAEL. GAELIC MOD PRIZE POEM. BY REV. DUGALD MACECHERN, B. D. (Translated by Author.) HARP of my own dear country, Trembling against my bosom, Sweeter to me are thy strains Than all of the wide world’s music, Shapely thy curving neck Like the wild swan afloat on the ocean, Gleaming thy sun-bright strings, Like […]

Black Duncan of the Cowl and Buchanan of Bochastle

Once when Black Duncan of the Cowl was in the house of Buchanan of Bochastle (Bochaisteil), the food that was customary at the time was put before him — milk, bread, and cheese. Black Duncan liked the cheese well, and he said to Buchanan, “Where was this cheese grown (made), laird of Bochastle?” “It grew […]

Finlay of Colonsay

Robert Adamson (1821 – 1848) was a pioneer photographer whose subjects included Archibald McNeill (1803 – 1870), Sir John McNeill and “Finlay of Colonsay, a deerstalker in the employ of Campbell of Islay.” There are three images of this Finlay, taken on 17 April 1846. Adamson established his studio in Rock House, Calton Hill, Edinburgh, […]

Formalities Observed

Every Heir or young Chieftain of a Tribe was oblig’d in Honour to give a publick Specimen of his Valour before he was own’d and declar’d Governor or Leader of his People, who obey’d and follow’d him upon all Occasions. This Chieftain was usually attended with a Retinue of young Men of Quality, who had […]

Tha sinn ‘san t-sean-nàdur

Tha sinn ‘san t-sean-nàdur A bhà sinn roimh am an achda, Am pearsanna ‘s an inntinn, ‘S ‘bar rìoghalachd, cha tèid lagadh. We’re still of our old nature As were we ere the Act was passèd, Alike in mind and persons And loyalty, we will not weaken. Am Breachan Uallach, Alasdair Mac Mhaighstir Alasdair.

Precious Few Heroes

I was listening to the news the other day I heard a fat politician who had the nerve to say He was proud to be Scottish, by the way With the the glories of our past to remember “Here’s tae us, wha’s like us?” Listen to the cry No surrender to the truth and here’s […]

Priestly Ordination

I have just returned from Incarnation Catholic Church where, this morning, Deacon William P. “Doc” Holiday became Fr. William P. “Doc” Holiday, Catholic priest. The whole affair was similar to Thursday’s diaconal ordination. This time, though, Msgr. Jeffrey Steenson was in attendance. Though Fr. Steenson is the Ordinary of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of […]

John Campbell of the Bank

John Campbell’s diary recounts how the Jacobite army took control of Edinburgh on 17 September 1745. On 1 October, Bonnie Prince Charlie’s secretary informed John Campbell that he had £857 of Royal Bank banknotes and wanted payment for them in gold. Upon failure to comply, the Jacobites would seize property from the Bank and its […]

R. R. McIan’s Buchanan

Robert Ronald McIan (1803 – 13 Dec 1856), also Robert Ranald McIan, was an actor and painter of Scottish descent. He is best known for romanticised depictions of Scottish clansmen, their battles, and domestic life.

Black Watch (Muted) Kilt

Just heard from Alexis Malcolm that my new kilt — in Muted Black Watch (Campbell) tartan — is in the post. I should receive it on Monday or Tuesday! Even though an Ancient Campbell kilt was first in order, Alexis says that Hurricane Sandy has delayed shipments of cloth from Scotland.

R. R. McIan’s Lord of the Isles

Robert Ronald McIan (1803 – 13 Dec 1856), also Robert Ranald McIan, was an actor and painter of Scottish descent. He is best known for romanticised depictions of Scottish clansmen, their battles, and domestic life.