The Fairy Flag of Dunvegan — oh fine Scottish Weather

 

Dunvegan (Dùn Bheagain)  Castle on the Isle of Skye  is the hereditary home of the Clan MacLeod  (and one part of my family tree).  The clan MacLeod are said to be descendants of a Norseman named Leod or Ljotr and the Isle of Skye is rich in Pictish, Norse and Gaelic tradition.  A sept of the clan are the famed Macrimmon pipers ( of Macrimmon’s Lament) who are under  the protection of the MacLeods.  The Castle has a famous fairy tower, a fairy flag and thus a story……

 


Griogal cridhe – Beloved Gregor

The Fairy Flag of Dunvegan

It is said that a chief of the clan MacLeod fell in love with one of the Sidhe (fairies). He married her knowing she could only stay with him for one year and a day.  After giving birth to a son  she was compelled to return to her fairy homeland and abandon everything mortal. This included the baby whom she had to leave with her grief stricken husband.

fae forest islandYet, even in the fairy realm she heard her infant crying. She returned secretly in the night to sing him a lullaby and wrap him up in her shawl.  When the boy grew older he told his father that the shawl was a talisman and if at any time the clan was in trouble, it was to be waved and  the fairies would come to their aid. However, the flag could only be waved three times before it would be reclaimed by the Sidhe folk.

fairy shawl baby

 

History tells that the MacLeods indeed waved it, once in battle where it turned the tide in their favour and once during a cattle plague. It has yet to be waved a third time and so it sits waiting in the great hall of the castle along with the Dunvegan cup and Ruairadh (Rory) Mòr’s hunting horn.

I used a layer texture and my light brush after converting this to monochrome sepia in Topaz.

Dunvegan_Cup,_Fairy_Flag,_Rory_Mor's_Horn_(photo,_sometime_before_1927)
the fairy flag, hunting horn and cup

no photography is allowed inside the castle but I did see the fairy flag in the great hall, tattered and yellowed with age and found this old 1920’s photograph on the web.

my scotland2a

ancient church ruins skye
ancient church with pre Christian Pictish Stone on hill

More Posts on Skye

and check out my time on the Orkneys’

and at Skaill House ( on Orkneys)

71 Comments Add yours

  1. Willow says:

    As usual your textures are so good!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. many thanks dear Willow!! I wondered how you were as you don’t seem to have been blogging much either.

      Like

      1. Willow says:

        Sigh I’m not blogging much. Just relaxing and staying the heat.

        Like

      2. Take care and if you are in SL at all do come see the Tales of the Spaewife’s Island exhibit. The link is in the footer of my blog.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Willow says:

        I did as usual very good.

        Like

  2. Beautiful mysterious photo. I love Dunvegan castle and Skye, however I didn’t know the story about the flag: very interesting. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. it’s a great story and a great place!! Thanks Moon!!

      Like

  3. Hauntingly beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you so much for dropping by Sherry!!

      Like

    1. Many thanks Eddie!!

      Like

  4. afairymind says:

    Another gorgeous edit. 🙂 It really captures the sense of age of the place. I love the story of the fairy flag! I wonder whether it will ever be waved for a third time…?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. oh it’s a great tale isn’t it. And yes – one of us should write a tale about the third wave!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. afairymind says:

        I’m thinking a futuristic dystopia…

        Liked by 1 person

  5. DG Hardy says:

    Wonderful! xo DG >

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Nic says:

    I always enjoy the stories you tell along side your edits, this week’s edit is very moody and I love it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I so appreciate your lovely comment Nic! Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Norma says:

    I loved the texture of the edit It goes well with the story. I really enjoyed this story Moon. Hope you are keeping well. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m happy you enjoyed the story- there are so many wonderful ones in the old castles!! Thanks Norma!

      Like

  8. lensaddiction says:

    A fabulous moody shot and you turned it into an old master painting style, lovely

    Liked by 1 person

    1. so pleased you like it Stacey- many thanks!

      Like

  9. Love the castle in sepia and texture. And what a wonderful story and music. Hugs! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. something about castles and stories!! Thanks for coming by and your lovely comment Linda!!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Great photos you brought from your trip. 🙂 Hope you’re feeling better. Huggles.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks Lizzie – hope to catch up with you soon!!

      Like

  11. Peter Nena says:

    I love that tale.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you Peter!! It’s a great tale!

      Like

  12. Wow. What a cool story. I wonder what it would take for it to be waved again…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t think they want to give it back lol!!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. svtakeiteasy says:

    Mystical as always Cybele. Love the texture and sepia tone, as well as the story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks so much Chris!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. kazg10 says:

    Looks great Cybele, you would have been in 7th Heaven with all that medieval history and buildings 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much and I think you’re right Kaz! Why ever would you think that lol!!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. using the Turner seascape filter I see…actually quite nice 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. oh so glad it came out that way- yes I see it!! I rather liked it myself! Thanks Robert!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Trisha says:

    I love the story and what you did with the photo. It’s so very beautiful and mystical!

    Like

    1. Many thanks Trisha!!

      Like

  17. We were at Dunvegan years ago. The weather wasn’t quite as dramatic but we did unintentially enter a strange little drama between some keystone cops and a couple of old characters who were poaching.

    As to your photo, you have truly captured the magic of the Dunvegan. I don’t know how you do it – it’s as if you have the power to conjure up magical skies – even without editing! And the edited version is perfect for the story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A thousand thanks Eliza!! Oh I think my ancestors did a lot of poaching too lol!! We hail from the Scots and the Irish on mom’s side. I do feel so at home in these places. Pleased you like the story too. There are so many of them!

      Like

  18. pike says:

    It’s gorgeous, you do it on your own way!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. DG MARYOGA says:

    Magnificent castle and gripping fairy tale dear Cybele!It must be thrilling to follow the traces of your ancestors.The manipulated photo is really enthralling,it does create the mood!I’m glad to see you posting again,it means you feel much better now.Take care 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is indeed and many thanks again Doda- yes on the mend I hope!

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Mystical and takes me back to stories of 19th-century English literature.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pleased you enjoyed the post!! Thanks Sally!

      Like

  21. solaner says:

    what a nice story

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you like it Sol!! Thanks!

      Like

  22. Robyn G says:

    Oh this is the perfect mood for your image!
    Wonderful image and treatment as always and a very interesting tale/history about the Fairy Flag.
    Welcome back Cybele xx 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. so pleased you like it Robyn!! Thank you!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Robyn G says:

        Always actually 😉😃

        Like

      2. A thousand thanks Robyn!!

        Liked by 1 person

  23. Anita says:

    Looks like you’re back in action, Cybele! 🙂 I absolutely love the effects in the monochrome sepia, and the atmosphere of the original. Looking forward to the next in the set…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks Anita- will be catching up with all!!

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Love this folklore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. glad you do Sharon!! thanks

      Liked by 1 person

  25. disperser says:

    Interesting story and nice castle.

    Does it work only for local problems or can it be waves to keep the world from going to heck?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. lol- I fear it is only for the MacLeod clan and they are hanging onto it!!

      Like

  26. Love the texture and image. The history and story are fantastic! Hope you’re feeling better now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am getting better and thanks so much Deborah!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m glad to hear you’re getting better! xx

        Like

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