Painted and Illuminated Prayers, Hymns and Incantations HOME
These vellum manuscript pages are taken from an unfinished illuminated manuscript. They form part of a collection of prayers, hymns and incantations that Alexander Carmichael collected in the 19th Century. In his introduction, he states: " it is genuine folk-lore, taken down from the lips of men and women, no part being copied from books. It is the product of far-away thinking, come down on the long stream of time. Who the thinkers and whence the stream, who can tell? Some of the hymns may have been composed within the cloistered cells of Derry and Iona, and some of the incantations among the cromlechs of Stonehenge and the standing-stones of Callarnis. These poems were composed by the learned, but they have not come down through the learned, but through the unlearned - not through the lettered few, but through the unlettered many - through the crofters and cottars, the herdsmen and shepherds, of the Highlands and Islands".
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