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Field notebook belonging to Alexander Carmichael, 1887

Identifier: Coll-97/CW89

Scope and Contents

Field notebook belonging to Alexander Carmichael probably while he lived at 31, Raeburn Place, Edinburgh, as this address is written in ink on the first folio. Written on the inside front cover but heavily scored is text which reads 'Mrs Malcolm MacLeod, [- Islay], widow of Mal[colm] MacLeod [Loch-]. The majority of the notebook contains material collected from Donald Currie, crofter, Ìle/ Islay relating folklore and natural history about the birds, fish, shellfish and animals found in and around the island, including birdsong, folk tales, anatomical descriptions and hunting techniques. He also related some stories about the history of the Rinns of Islay especially in relation to the lighthouse on Orasaigh/Orsay. In this notebook, Carmichael also records a good deal of natural history, especially about birds, eels and fish, from John MacAulay formerly of Ross and Cromarty but living in Dùn Èideann/Edinburgh. The notebook contains a lot of vocabulary, poems, stories and sayings in relation to wildlife and also touches on placenames. While the material is predominantly from Ìle/Islay and Geàrrloch/Gairloch, there are also a number of items relating to An t-Eilean Sgitheanach/Isle of Skye, Hiorta/St Kilda and Uibhist/Uist.


  • Creation: 1887

Language of Materials

English Gaelic

Conditions Governing Access

This material is unrestricted.


53 folios ; 17.2 x 10.5 cm

Physical Location


Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
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Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
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