The Massed Bands lead the way for the spectacular Parade of
Tartans at the 2004 Grandfather Mountain Highland Games this
past July. If you can hear these pipes and drums and not be
moved…you need to call 911! My heart always beats faster and
pride oozes out of my head as the drum majors lead their
musicians around the track at beautiful MacRae Meadows at
Robert Louis Stevenson, quoted in
W. S. Baring-Gould, The Lure of the Limerick:
There was an old man of the Cape
Who made himself garments of crape.
When asked, “Do they tear?”
He replied, “Here and there;
But they’re perfectly splendid for shape.”
We know where we are…but it’s harder to figure out when we
are…when you see such authentic reenactors in a Parade of
Tartans as this one at the 2004 Blairsville, Georgia Highland
Games in the beautiful north Georgia mountains.
The Clan Baird Society Worldwide’s publication
The Gryphon has a list of things we all just need to know:
- Our eyes are always the same size from
birth, but our noses and ears never stop growing.
- No word in the English language rhymes
with “month”. Orange is a problem, too.
- The word “facetious” includes all five
vowels in their proper alphabetical order.
- Walter Cavanaugh, “Mr. Plastic
Fantastic”, has 1196 valid credit cards.
- If NASA sent birds into space, they
would die. Birds need gravity to swallow.
- Einstein could not speak fluently when
he was nine years old. His parents thought he was retarded.
- You’re more likely to get stung by a
bee on a windy day than in any other weather.
- How can you tell a gorilla is angry?
It sticks its tongue out.
- If an orangutan belches at you – watch
out. He is warning you to stay out of his territory.
- Dirty snow melts quicker than clean
- You can only see a rainbow in the
morning or the late afternoon.
- In 1984, a New Jersey man opened a
summer camp for Cabbage Patch dolls.
- In Los Angeles, there are fewer people
than there are automobiles.
things come without seeking -- jealousy, terror, and love.
Anonymous, from Gaelic
Jeri Daniel Martin, DGOTJ, LOK, FSA Scot in
her new electric buggy at the 2004 Grandfather Mountain
Jeri says that since the Games…she has added
a four-inch fringe to her “surrey” top!
One of the most popular pipe tunes to appear on the Scots
music scene in recent years is the haunting Highland
Cathedral, a favorite with bridal couples as an alternative
during the wedding service to Marie’s Wedding or even Amazing
It appears two Germans composed the tune – some
say brothers – who went by the name Roever and Korb. Lyrics
were set to the tune after the fashion of a national anthem,
and were based on an old legend.
The folk tale goes that, during the reign of
King James I of Scotland, all clan chiefs were required to
assemble in a secret place known as Highland Cathedral, to
pledge a cessation to their constant feuding, and to live in
peace with each other.
This they agreed on – unanimously – and peace
prevailed in Scotland, but unfortunately only as long as the
Thanks to The Merito.
Clan Elliot at Grandfather Mountain Highland Games 2004
Parade of Tartans. Did you know that this surname appears in
the 13th century, both in England – from the Old English
forename “Elwald” and in Scotland at Arbirlot (Aber-Eliot)?
The names of the ancestors of the folks shown here…varied as
Elliots of Minto and Eliotts of Stobs.
Ancient Romans paid for peace with Scots
Roman soldiers kept the rebellious Scots under
control using generous bribes rather than brute force,
archaeologists have claimed. This discovery of a hoard of 300
Roman silver coins buried in an Iron Age pot on a farm in
Elgin, Moray, on Scotland’s northeastern coast, has given
weight to the theory that the Romans avoided fighting local
chieftains by paying them to keep the peace.
The coins span more than 100 years, from A.D.
60 in Nero’s day to A.D. 197, the reign of Emperor Severus,
when the Romans had all but retreated to Hadrian’s Wall. They
still had two forts north of the border, at Cramond, near
Edinburgh, and at Newstead, near Melrose, but they were
staffed by only small numbers of soldiers.
The soldiers made it their business, however,
to march up the east coast as far as Elgin, about 200 miles
from their northern frontier, to bribe chieftains not to cause
Fraser Hunter, curator of Iron Age and Roman
archaeology at the National Museums of Scotland, said
yesterday the find was “very unusual” and the first to show
firm evidence of a financial arrangement between Romans and
Although buried Roman treasure has been found
before – the largest find being 2,000 silver coins unearthed
at Falkirk in the 1930s – this was the first time the money
had been found in a local pot, rather than a Roman one, Mr.
“This find supports our theory that the coins
were given to native chieftains as a bribe. The Romans were
shrewd politicians and to keep the peace may have bribed
tribes that were causing trouble, rather than going into
battle. Here, far beyond the Roman frontier, it may have
seemed simpler to bribe than to fight,” he said.
The cache of denarii, the Roman silver
currency, was discovered during excavations by the National
Museums, after an amateur enthusiast with a metal detector
found 18 loose coins in a plowed field at Birnie.
Thanks to The Scots Speak, Official Voice of
the St. Andrew’s Society of Jacksonville, PO Box 5441,
Jacksonville, FL 32247-5441.
How a piper “minds his manners!”
WARNING! The following may only be read if you love the
- Always put your pipes down when
embracing your fiancee.
- When in church being married, ask the
best man to hold your pipes while you slip the ring on your
bride’s finger. After all, this is her big day and you must
make some sacrifice.
- If you are dressing your pipe bag with
treacle or honey on the dining room table, see that there
are no crumbs on the cloth. If these get into the bag, they
may get onto the reeds with most undesirable consequences.
Ask your wife or mother to put a clean cloth on the table.
- When your wife is holding a ladies’
meeting in the house, do not play your pipes in the same
room. The ladies will be too busy talking to listen
attentively to your music.
- Do not tune your pipes in the same
room as others are watching television. Wait until after
the epilogue or when everyone is in bed.
- When playing at a wedding do not stand
in front of the bridegroom and play a lament. It is
equally bad taste to stand in front of the bride, especially
if she is over forty, and play When the Battle’s O’er.
- In competitions, do not approach the
judges’ table with a truculent swagger and say, “Right,
Jock, get an earful of this.” It is bad taste to affix your
chewing gum to the underside of his table. It is far better
to stick it to the ivory bit on the end of your chanter
until the conclusion of your recital.
Thanks to the Clan Guthrie News.