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In the News January 2020

Celtic history and archeology recently in the news Padlock among finds made at Lair of Glenshee Pictish homestead An early Medieval padlock was among the finds made by archaeologists at a Pictish settlement in Perthshire. More Irish family records become available online for free The Irish government made more Irish birth, death, and marriage certificates[…]

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Hoodoo You?

Hoodoo You?   The term “Hoodoo” is often associated with folk magic, and although there certainly may be some overlap in some places, it is often confused with Louisiana, or Haitian Voodoo. Modern practioners seem to use terms for it like “root work,” “conjure work”, or “root doctoring” as synonyms for which seems to suggest[…]

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King Arthur’s Origins

Arthur Originally Published February 2016 I’m in the middle of re-reading The Crystal Cave the first book of author Mary Stewart’s Arthurian saga, so I thought I’d do something quick about King Arthur’s origins since I’m running late this month. The earliest dated reference to Arthur seems to be a Welsh chronicle the Historia Brittonum[…]

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Braveheart, William Wallace, and the Kilt

When it comes to classic Celtic attire, the Braveheart kilt may be amongst the most distinctive of all the items of clothing! As much a character as any of the actors, this is a kilt that is instantly recognizable, immediately identifiable, and more than likely entirely historically inaccurate. Yep, hate to break it to you,[…]

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The Glencoe Massacre

view westwards along the glen

The Glencoe Massacre After William III took the throne of England, Scotland and Ireland the government offered an indemnity In August 1691 to all Highland chiefs who would take an oath of allegiance before January 1, 1692. Many Scottish clans remained loyal to King James II  had been replaced by William III. Therefore, anticipating of[…]

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The Lost Barony of Culbin

The Lost Barony of Culbin Originally published January 2016 Legend has it that in the seventeenth century Laird Alexander Kinnard was playing cards on a Saturday night in his house on the southern coast of the Firth of Moray. At midnight he threw down his cards in frustration at a losing streak and vowed that[…]

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Why Was the Kilt Banned?

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The kilt is a Scottish icon. Ask a random person on the street what image comes to mind when they hear the word “Scotland.” Go ahead; we’ll wait. What did the random person say when you asked them to free-associate with the word “Scotland”? Was their answer kilts? If their answer wasn’t kilts, it was[…]

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Wren Day Traditions

Wren Day Originally Published December 2015 The wren, the wren, the king of all birds, On St. Stephen’s Day was caught in the furze,  Although he is little his family is great, I pray you, good landlady, give us a treat… The day after Christmas, or St. Stephen’s Day, is also “Wren Day”, or “Hunt[…]

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Celtic History In the News — November 2019

Celtic History and Archaeology In the News Apologies to any of you that have already read this one last month. We are just getting some content moved to the new location.  Pictish carved beasts ‘unlike anything found before A 1,200-year-old standing stone discovered in the Highlands has carvings never before seen on a Pictish stone,[…]