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


Houstry Broch (South)


<b>Houstry Broch (South)</b>Posted by LesHamiltonImage © Les Hamilton
Nearest Town:Wick (26km NE)
OS Ref (GB):   ND155346 / Sheets: 11, 17
Latitude:58° 17' 31.29" N
Longitude:   3° 26' 29.47" W

Added by Paulus

Discussion Topics0 discussions
Start a topic

Show map   (inline Google Map)


Add news Add news

Images and fieldnotes for this broch, which is actually called 'Minera', can be viewed on TMA's dedicated Minera page.
LesHamilton Posted by LesHamilton
14th February 2021ce
Edited 14th February 2021ce

Images (click to view fullsize)

Add an image Add an image
<b>Houstry Broch (South)</b>Posted by LesHamilton


Add folklore Add folklore
Another story about the Broch.

"In Houstry, Dunbeath, Caithness, about the year 1809 or 1810, David Gunn, a crofter, in the course of making a kail-yaird, interfered with one of those prehistoric ruins known as Brochs which are so numerous in that northern region. Now it was well known that this Broch was a fairy habitation, and, in any case, it was well known that to tamper with a Broch or to carry away any of its materials was extremely uncanny."

But Mr Gunn didn't take any notice, and unfortunately a plague broke out that decimated the cattle of the whole district. Thanks a lot.

The was a meeting of local important types, and they decided on a Teine-Eigin as the best step forward. So they got a branch and stripped off its bark, and purified it by popping it on a little island in the Houstry Burn, so it was separated from everydayness by the flowing water. Everyone put out any fires that were burning. Then someone made a fire with the purified wood, and all the other fires were kindled from it anew.

The contributor of this story actually sent in a photo of one of these special bits of wood. It's got round dips in it as though it's been used (maybe) for making fire by a bow/drill method. But it hasn't got little v-shaped notches like wot Ray Mears would recommend.

Sacred Fire
R. C. Maclagan
Folklore, Vol. 9, No. 3. (Sep., 1898), pp. 280-281.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
15th April 2007ce