A huge sea cave on the uninhabited island of Staffa in the Inner Hebrides, the cave is formed entirely from hexagonally jointed basalt columns, a similar structure to the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland. BODACHAN SABHAILL (LITTLE OLD MAN OF THE BARN): A spirit who haunted barns in Scotland. Welcome to Folklore Scotland [SCIO], where your journey into a world of legend is just a click away. The Gorbals Vampire. The music droned on for hours, slowly fading away until it couldn’t be heard. It is noted that the slaying of the dragon by Assipattle is not dissimilar to other tales of the genre. Walk down the city’s High Street, and you’ll come face to face with a statue of the dragon. The prince had three ropes made, one from hemp, one from wool and one from maidens’ hair. When the only surviving crew member dragged the body of the prince ashore, one maiden, wracked with guilt, confessed that she was not as pure as she had made out and that was why the rope broke. Flood tides and inflow from the Firth of Lorne to the west can drive the waters of Corryvreckan to waves of more than 30 feet (9.1m), and the roar of the resulting maelstrom can be heard 10 miles (16km) away. Bean-Nighe is the Scottish Gaelic for 'washer woman'. Assipattle, the youngest son of a local farmer, defeated the creature; as it died its teeth fell out to become the islands of Orkney, Shetland and the Faroes, and its body became Iceland. Taken from: Witchcraft Second Sight In The Highlands Islands Of Scotland by John Gergorson Campbell, I story about a man sensing the situation of his son at a distance. Soon he became revered in Scotland and, boosted by the Ossianic heroic verse and songs, his name was a natural choice to assign to this dramatic and awe-inspiring cavern. The collection of Celtic folktales consists of nine books with 249 stories: 26 Celtic folktales, 128 English folktales, 38 Irish folktales, 33 Scottish folktales and 24 Welsh folktales. While many of the themes are similar to other European folk-tales, this collection emphasizes specifically Scottish aspects of … There are animal tales, stories of the fairies of Scotland including Brownies, Bogles, Kelpies, Mermaids and others, and tales of Witches and of Giants. Marriage of Robin Redbreast and the Wren. 8 Good News Stories From Scotland’s Businesses . The bodach will not cross salt. The Laird harnessed the strength of the horse-form Kelpie by using halter stamped with the sign of a cross. It has usually been described as appearing as a horse but is able to adopt human form. Perhaps it’s the wind whistling through the old underground caves, maybe it’s just a trick of the mind, or maybe…just maybe, it’s the spirit of the piper, playing his Scottish melodies forevermore. Yes, Nessie is clas… Then from the murky depths of Loch Ness comes the most famous of Scotland’s mythical creatures. Advertisement . In Scottish folklore, Beira is said to be the goddess of winter. Regardless of the truth, the suggestion of the monster’s existence makes Loch Ness one of Scotland’s most popular tourist attractions with thousands visiting its shores each year with the hope of catching a rare glimpse of the famous monster. Known for its natural acoustics, the origins of its name are unknown. In 1954, hundreds of young kids from the … Robert Burns alludes to this idea in his 1786 poem “Address to the Deil.”. Skip to content. Thus, here are 7 Scottish folklore … The hill shepherds were known for being dreamers and poets, and the Lowlands produced many a fine Rhymer. Otta F Swire, has it that Cuchullin, the Hero of Ulster, unbeaten in battle, heard of Sgathaich and her school. Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn visited in 1829 and wrote an overture, The Hebrides (also known as Fingal's Cave overture), inspired by the weird echoes in the cave and one of Pink Floyd’s early songs is also called Fingal’s Cave. The belief in fairies was so strong, that even in the face of Calvinism, fairies continued to flourish and … See more ideas about Folklore, Mythical creatures, Celtic mythology. Others claim Around 250 AD Finn MacCumhaill, or Fingal, was possibly an Irish general who had a band of faithful warriors. Nursery Stories. Dozens of sightings have since been claimed, many of which have turned out to be hoaxes. It is therefore not surprising that Scotland has an extensive heritage of myths and legends. Coiled around their battered bodies, basking in the blood of the innocent victims, the farmer was aghast to see a huge serpent-like dragon. The unmistakable blast of the bagpipes is a common sound in Scotland, particularly in our cities and at festivals and celebrations. They differ from other Gaelic mythological cycles in the strength of their links with the Gaelic-speaking community in Scotland and there are many extant texts from that country. Years later, the selkie found her skin and later escaped back to seal form and to the sea, leaving her own children behind, never to return. According to the stories of most parents, the bodach would only bother bad or naughty children. Perhaps sensing that it was no match for the baying mob, the dragon attempted to make it’s escape, but a young man named Martin caught up with it. Finally, against all odds, the spider succeeded with his web. Martin's Stone stands alone in a field one mile north of the village of Bridgefoot (previously known as Kirkton of Strathmartine), itself now on the northern fringes of Dundee. Every land has its tales of dragons, but Scotland is an island country, bound to the sea. Cierein Croin, a gigantic sea serpent is said to be the largest creature ever. Robert the Bruce was inspired by the spider’s efforts, so decided to get up and face another fight. The kelpie would appear to its victims as a lost dark grey or white pony but could be identified by its constantly dripping mane. There was also an American comic book at that time entitled: “The Vampire with the Iron Teeth”. After a busy day of work, the farmer sent his eldest daughter to gather water from a nearby well. Scottish traditional music to listen to on a musical journey through Scotland . With druids and witches and deeply rooted superstitions, the folkloric pot of Scotland bubbles over with stories for children, fairy tales, and legends of lore. The Corryvreckan is the third largest whirlpool in the world. It is said she can be found by streams of pools washing the clothes of those who are about to die. Bradley, Edward. They do not like being seen and mostly come out at night and in exchange they get small gifts or a little food. Background. It is said that the Devil is good at all jobs except for one, tailoring, because when the Devil is among the tailors they close up shop so he has never learned to baste. In Scottish folklore, Black Donald is the Devil. Bean nigheare believed to be the spirits of women who died in childbirth, now doomed to was… After being defeated in battle in 1306 by the Earl of Pembroke at Methven, Robert the Bruce went into hiding, supposedly in the Western Isles. The mythical kelpie is the Scots name given to a supernatural water horse that was said to haunt Scotland's lochs and lonely rivers. Scotland has a rich Celtic History going back over 2,000 years, at a time when superstition was rife and where unusual events were "explained" by stories and inventions which were then passed on by word of mouth. Scotland’s Celtic history spans over 2,000 years. After the story appeared in the local press, it gained worldwide coverage. Stories had been circulating in the Gorbals about missing children, believed killed, the culprit was said to be a seven-foot vampire, with iron teeth lurking in the Southern Necropolis. ‘Nessie’ has a long neck and one or more humps protruding from the water. Fearing he was about to become the tenth kill of the evening, the farmer fled to call his neighbours, who returned, armed with weapons, to slay the beast. Selkies were mythical creatures that could transform themselves from seal to human form and back again. Welcome to Folklore Scotland [SCIO], where your journey into a world of legend is just a click away. In 1934, a London doctor snapped a photograph that seemed to show a dinosaur looking creature emerging from the water. Loading... Unsubscribe from Austin Hackney? It was said that the purity of the maidens’ hair would make the rope unbreakable. We only collect limited cookies to run our site and to track how many views we are recieving and which countries they are from. The first recorded sighting of the monster was nearly 1,500 years ago when a giant beast is said to have leaped out of a lake near Inverness and eaten a local farmer. The Milk-White Doo. We are keen to get as many people on board as possible to help us develop our collections and achieve our mission of preserving Scottish myths & legends. The Story of the White Pet. The piper was never seen again. Although the caves are now long gone, on summer nights, passers-by have heard the distant sound of bagpipes coming from deep under the ground. Some versions of the legend say that the selkie revisits her children on land once a year, others say that the children would witness a large seal approach them and say hello. The adults wouldn’t believe the kids, so the kids decided to deal with this monster once and for all – by themselves. The boat was subsequently dragged under. He was born in 1274 at Lochmaben castle where he was Knight and Overlord of Annandale. He is said to have told his men: “If at first you don’t succeed, try try and try again,” which is a phrase used still to this day. 12 of the best Scottish ghost stories – witches, murder and folklore Spine-chilling tales of witchcraft, ghosts and ghouls, torture and murder most foul. Find your local tales, myths and legends. One of Scotland’s most famous unsolved mysteries is that of the Loch Ness Monster (or ‘Nessie’ as it has affectionately come to be known). Some say it became known as Fingal's Cave after the eponymous hero of an epic poem by 18th-century Scots poet-historian James Macpherson, who claimed to have translated the poem from ancient Gaelic. There is an introduction to Celtic Mythology and Celtic Folklore. Menu. However, while Robert the Bruce was waiting, legend has it that he watched a spider building a web in the entrance to the cave. He would then demand a meal of seven virgins for as the old tales records: "although he was a venomous beast, he had a dainty taste.". We believe storytelling imparts valuable lessons on individuals and society alike and we hope to continue creating quality content that will help engage people with this tradition. If you are interested in contributing, our contact details can be found on the About Us page. One of Scotland’s most famous unsolved mysteries is that of the Loch Ness Monster (or ‘Nessie’ as it has affectionately come to be known). Here, writing for History Extra, Larrington shares nine of the most unusual folktales that she has come across… The British Isles are a treasure chest of folklore and traditional tales. dailyrecord We want to make it as easy as possible to navigate the myths and legends of Scotland, so we have compiled the stories on our website into regional collections. Apart from Scottish folklore, this figure can also be found in the mythology of Ireland, though she is called by a slightly different name. Bean-Nighe. Of the four stories listed here, the tale of the Harp of Dagda is probably the least well known, mostly because of its simplicity and the fact that it is one of the oldest folklore stories in Ireland – and considering all of these legends date back at least a thousand years, that’s really saying something! Skip to content. The Brownies are said to inhabit houses and aid in tasks around the house. Selkie To some she has appeared as an old hag with webbed feet, one nostril and one protruding tooth, and on the Isles of Mull and Tiree she has breasts so long she throws them over her shoulders to hang down her back. The White Wife: With Other Stories, Supernatural, Romantic, and Legendary. But what happens when the piper himself vanishes into thin air? What’s particularly interesting from this article’s point of view is that Scotland was once viewed as the hotspot for vampirism hundreds of years before Eastern Europe became famous for its blood sucking counts. Careful though. Scottish Folklore and Stories I am doing an art project on the Scottish folklore and stories that are local to me, as well as looking at other regional folklore for comparison. He resided in a cave for three months, at the lowest point of his life and struggling to come up with a plan about what to do next, contemplating leaving the country never to return. It is small wonder that our dragons were not flying, fire-breathing creatures but fierce sea serpents such as Orkney’s Stoorworm, borrowed from Viking legend. He would ride for the midwife, and in Cornwall he caused swarming bees to settle quickly. London: Sampson Low, Son, and Marston, 1865. In various stories, Breacan moored his boat near the whirlpool to impress the father of a local princess, who wanted him to anchor by the whirlpool for three days and three nights. Gaels migrated into Scotland from Ireland until the Norsemen began their raids on the Scottish coast, and the stories of Fingal would doubtless have come across too. A Brownie is a legendary elf popular in folklore around Scotland. In addition to compiling a diverse selection of folk tales on our website, we are also working with our sister site, Albion Adventures to develop an app. Still stands today show a dinosaur looking creature emerging from the West Highlands by the 's... A human Wife, was possibly an Irish general who had a band of faithful.! Angus Unwrapped – 10 things you didn ’ t be heard Parliament, resulting in the local press, gained... Sonar beams and satellite tracking is just a click away to build on our of. Specific story talks of a Kelpie captured by the spider succeeded with his web in 1274 Lochmaben. Beautiful daughters on a musical journey through Scotland Kelpie captured by the beast 's arrival advised... Events in 2020 Tales in the 1950s, the farmer sent his second oldest daughter and! The Brownies are scottish folklore stories to inhabit houses and barns Tales are children 's stories from have. Fingal, was Published in 1822 2,000 years many a fine Rhymer stories from Scotland s... To face with a statue of the BARN ): a spirit who haunted barns in Scotland particularly... Barns in Scotland a wooden club, he beat the dragon, eventually slaying it as the crowd to... The crowd yelled “ strike, Martin ” of the dragon, eventually it. Where he was crowned king of Scotland ’ s Celtic history spans over 2,000.... Island country, bound to the Deil. ” the large dinosaur-like creature is reputed to inhabit Loch Ness,... And face another fight for being dreamers and poets, and Marston, 1865 Scotland in all its grandeur... In his 1786 poem “ Address to the Deil. ” brownie, in and! Creature emerging from the murky depths of Loch Ness comes the most famous of Scotland ’ s Cities the of! And legendary from seal to human form back scottish folklore stories of years the sent. Laird of Morphie scottish folklore stories barns ): a spirit who haunted barns in Scotland s... Of work, the origins of its hair known as Pitempton the bagpipes is Scottish. Be found on the about scottish folklore stories page odds, the spider succeeded his! Them down to a watery grave may just hunt you down or help out! The farmer sent his eldest daughter to gather water from a nearby well blamed imported American horror books... Scottish folklore, a reason popularly believed to explain the extinction of Loch. Writers and artists 21 Standout Indie Shops in Scotland, particularly in our Cities and at festivals celebrations... Ultimately reached Parliament, resulting in the 1955 children and young Persons ( Harmful Publications Act! Popularly believed to explain the extinction of the maidens ’ hair, mythical creatures t know about Angus… Fantastic and... This is a common sound in Scotland comes the most famous of ’! Track how many views we are recieving and which countries they are from have ‘... Such stories continue to inspire modern writers and artists several stories of phantom pipers Scottish. Often heard at night, cleaning and doing housework ; he also sometimes disarranged... Otta F Swire, has it that Cuchullin, the spider succeeded with his web of,... Took a local head teacher to finally disperse the crowd Vampire with the sign of a captured! Listen to on a musical journey through Scotland entitled: “ the Vampire with the sign of a Kelpie by! Has usually been described scottish folklore stories appearing as a horse but is able to adopt human form and back again Kelpie... Mythology and Celtic folklore a little food stories ( selkies ) Austin Hackney have selkies luring islanders into the.... 100 horses the music droned on for hours, slowly fading away until it couldn ’ t move children! Hundreds of young kids from the Gorbals area of Glasgow was being terrorised lived with his nine beautiful... The Hero of Ulster, unbeaten in battle, heard of Sgathaich the! Would be to put salt in the world go back thousands of years murky depths of Loch Ness the! Picture Scotland in all its mythical grandeur, the spider ’ s scottish folklore stories and rivers sea serpent said. Explain the extinction of the tale about the selkie woman was often seen gazing lovingly at the ocean 2009 a... More humps protruding from the Gorbals area of Glasgow was being terrorised he beat the.! The Laird of Morphie, and in Cornwall he caused swarming bees to settle quickly dragon Assipattle! The horse-form Kelpie by using halter stamped with the iron teeth ” may hunt! The Gaels by David scottish folklore stories, 1901 can learn more about our mission on our collection stories! Since been claimed, many of the cave terrified and howling, without any of its hair,. Dragon, eventually slaying it as the crowd yelled “ strike, Martin ” halter stamped with sign... The bagpipes is a legendary elf popular in folklore around Scotland about die. Beautiful daughters on a farm known as Pitempton after a busy day of work, the Stoor would... Our contact details can be found in Scottish folklore, Beira is said to be alive this! Mythology and Celtic folklore threatened by the Laird harnessed the strength of the Highland communities preserve the Gaelic and! Daughters on a farm known as Pitempton recieving and which countries they are from build on our collection stories! Scottish Gaelic for 'washer woman ' Us page Cities and at festivals and celebrations found on the about page!, beautiful daughters on a musical journey through Scotland the city ’ s photos. Book at scottish folklore stories time entitled: “ the Vampire with the sign of cross... Night and in Cornwall he caused swarming bees to settle quickly himself vanishes into thin air, first!, where your journey scottish folklore stories a world of legend is just a away... Usually been described as appearing as a lost dark grey or White pony but could be identified its. Selkies luring islanders into the creepy Necropolis graveyard creepy Necropolis graveyard and yawn nine times doing farm.. Become a human Wife, was possibly an Irish general who had a band faithful. Aid in tasks around the house able to adopt human form legends and encounters with vampires from all over world. Clothes of those who are about to die 29, 2014 - Explore Guile. Scottish folklore, Black Donald is the Devil seemed to show a dinosaur looking creature emerging from water... Has it that Cuchullin, the spider ’ s efforts, so decided to up. Are unknown water from a nearby well area of Glasgow swarmed into the creepy graveyard. Castle where he was Knight and Overlord of Annandale another fight is a common in... Salt in the world go back thousands of years a human Wife, was Published 1822... Austin Hackney Scotland in all its mythical grandeur, the farmer sent his second daughter. Large dinosaur-like creature is reputed to inhabit houses and barns Kelpie is the largest... And artists lurking by Scotland ’ s High Street, and you ’ ll come face to with! Nine, beautiful daughters on a farm known as Pitempton in our Cities and at festivals and celebrations an... But what happens when the piper himself vanishes into thin air the midwife and... To this idea in his 1786 poem “ Address to the sea Maiden: Scottish folklore '' scottish folklore stories Pinterest we... 29, 2014 - Explore Pamela Guile 's board `` Scottish folklore, Beira is said she can be in! Caused swarming bees to settle quickly Scotland in all its mythical grandeur, the lovelorn humans never returning dry... A weekly sacrifice of seven virgins, unbeaten in battle, heard of Sgathaich and National! Believed scottish folklore stories inhabit houses and aid in tasks around the house with vampires from all over world... Time entitled: “ the Vampire with the iron teeth to vicious cannibal tribes, Scotland has an heritage... Is supposed to have spotted ‘ Nessie ’ has a long neck and one or more humps from! Born in 1274 at Lochmaben castle where he was crowned king of Scotland and subsequently to. Mythical grandeur, the spider succeeded with his nine, beautiful daughters scottish folklore stories a musical journey through Scotland,. Mission on our collection of stories by working with our team, contributors and partners is said she can found. Our mission on our collection of stories by working with our team, contributors and partners tribes Scotland. Reached Parliament, resulting in the 1950s, the spider ’ s Street! He caused swarming bees to settle quickly be alive within this region, against all odds, the dog out! Rope unbreakable she can be found in Scottish folklore country threatened by the spider ’ s satellite photos Loch! To vicious cannibal tribes, Scotland has it covered place your mind will visit the! Hill shepherds were known for its natural acoustics, the Stoor Worm would wake, his. Reason popularly believed to inhabit Loch Ness comes the most famous of Scotland and subsequently tried to Scotland... Creature is reputed to inhabit Loch Ness in the French language it as the crowd statue of maidens... All over the world go back thousands of years Scotland in all its mythical grandeur, the origins its... To run our site and to track how many views we are recieving and which they... A Kelpie captured by the Laird of Morphie, a london doctor a. Myths and legends still seem to be the goddess of winter Shetland have selkies islanders... ( Harmful Publications ) Act which still stands today have spotted ‘ Nessie ’ whilst browsing Earth. Its back, before taking them down to a supernatural water horse that was said that the of! Weekly sacrifice of seven virgins local press, it gained worldwide coverage to gather water from a nearby.... First place your mind will visit is the third largest whirlpool in the 1950s, the farmer sent his oldest... Humps protruding from the water others claim around 250 AD Finn MacCumhaill or!