The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

     

House Of The Fairies

Souterrain

<b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoyImage © drew/A
Nearest Town:Uig (134km E)
OS Ref (GB):   NF10019941
Latitude:57° 48' 49.84" N
Longitude:   8° 34' 14.38" W

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<b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy <b>House Of The Fairies</b>Posted by drewbhoy

Folklore

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But the most extraordinary relic of antiquity in the village is a subterranean house. I had heard of it on my first visit; and on the 13th July 1876 determined to have it opened and examined. A crop of potatoes grew on the top, and the owner at first refused to allow this to be disturbed. But by dint of raillery, persuasion, and a promise to pay the damage, he at length acceded to my request. This underground dwelling was discovered about thirty-two years ago by a man who was digging the ground above it, and was generally called the House of the Fairies. The aperture on the top was filled up again, and it had never been opened since. But after a little search the hole was found and an entrance made. Two or three men volunteered to clear out the stones and soil that had accumulated on the floor to a depth of several feet, and worked with a will. The house was found to be twenty-five feet long by three feet eight inches wide, and about four feet in height. The walls consisted of three or four ranges of stones, a roof of slabs resting on the sides. This house runs due north and south, and curiously enough there is a drain under the floor. Amongst the debris on the floor I found numerous stone axes, knives, and fragments of a lamp, as well as pieces of rude pottery. As there was no tradition concerning this house, and as it is assigned to the fairies, it may be very old; but I am inclined to think that the stone period extended to a very recent date in St Kilda. I have some satisfaction in believing that I am the discoverer of stone implements in St Kilda, and that my claim has been recognised by the Society of Scottish Antiquaries.

From Life In St Kilda During the 1870s.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
4th January 2017ce

Miscellaneous

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In 1844 a souterrain was discovered, known to the islanders as the House Of Fairies. It consists of a lintelled passage, some 9m long with at least one known lateral branch. The stones used in its construction are large, with massive walls converging towards to the top to accommodate the lintels. The structure which has been excavated numerous times since 1844 with finds giving a suggested date back to the first or early second millennium AD. A few decorated potsherds are similar to standard Iron Age finds uncovered elsewhere in the Western Isles.

Lewis and Harris by Francis Thompson.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
4th January 2017ce

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Canmore


Superb photos of the souterrain.
drewbhoy Posted by drewbhoy
4th January 2017ce