Skip to main content

Customs relating to girls and marriage, c1870

Identifier: Coll-97/CW7/30

Scope and Contents

Customs relating to girls and marriage including 'goid a chail', which takes place on Là Samhna [All Hallows' Day], and in which a girl puts 'cal' under her pillow and if she sees her lover taking the cal from under her pillow she is to be married to him that year. Also, a girl is blindfolded and made to choose a plate from three which contain earth, water and salt respectively. The earth plate means death, the salt bitterness and the water marriage. Lastly the girls throw their belts through an open window and a blind-folded person throws them back, each girl picking her own belt up. 'The position in point of trim of the belt in the ceremony indicated the position in point of time of the owner's marriage. If no belt could be found no marriage'. The last custom, which has a margin note reading 'See Burns' states that girls would go to a stream and dip their hands in it and were not to speak until spoken to in their sleep and that speaker would be their lover. The text has annotations in pencil.


  • Creation: c1870

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

This material is unrestricted.


From the Series: 39 folios ; 26.3 x 22.1 cm

Physical Location


Physical Location

folio 32r, line 5 to folio 32v, line 4

Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
George Square
Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
+44(0)131 650 8379