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In the same issuo of the Scotsman in which the last of these letters was published, the following telegram, dated New York, August 29th, appeared :—

The Fenian Conspirators.

Perhaps no one is better qualified to speak for the Irish Nationalists than William Carroll. The Philadelphia Prca> to-day prints a long report of an interview with him. He says the organisation which recently sat in Convention at Chicago regards the use of dynamite with contempt and disgust. The Irish Nationalist party is certainly revolutionary in its objects and methods, but it will not sacrifice innocent human life if it can possibly perceive any other method of achieving its purpose. Nothing less than the complete independence of Ireland will content them. Their present efforts are devoted to preparation and patient waiting for England's next war.

From an account in the World, of 31st August, of an interview byone of their correspondents with the arch-Fenian, we extract the following answer by O'Donovan Itossa :—

You were asking me about that Skirmishing Fund a while ago. Pat (Crowe) knows what he is saying. I transferred the whole thing in 1S77 to the Irish National Revolutionary Committee. Pat says that Ford, proprietor of the Irish World, used 20,000 dollars out of the 90,000 collected, on his paper; that I)r Carol], of Philadelphia, got 7000, on his personal note, for his own uses; that 2000 were handed t<> Murdoch, who agitated in this country with Parnell for the purposes of founding a paper in the North of Ireland (Scotland?); that 5000 dollars went to Michael Davitt to start the Land League; and that 20,000 dollars went to John Holland for his torpedo.

In an advertisement inserted in the American papers last spring intimating Mr Murdoch's Lectures, wo were told "For vacant dates, address "Dr William Carroll, G17 South lGth Street, Philadelphia, Pa." Further comment to show the connection of parties with each other and with the Skirmishing Fund would be a wasto of space.

THE SCOTTISH THISTLE.—This ancient emblem of Scots pugnacity, with its motto, "Nemo me impune lacessit," is represented on various species of royal bearings, coins, and coats of armour, so that there is some difficulty in saying which is the genuine original thistle. The origin of the national badge itself is thus handed down by tradition :— When the Danes invaded Scotland, it was deemed unwarlike to attack an enemy in the pitch darkness of night, instead of a pitched battle by day j but on one occasion the invaders resolved to avail themselves of this stratagem; and in order to prevent their tramp from being heard they marched hare-footed. They had thus neared the .Scottish force unobserved, when a Dane unluckily stepped with his nuked foot upon a superb, prickly thistle, and instinctively uttered a cry of pain, which discovered the assault to the Scots, who ran to their arms, and defeated tho foe vU0^ terrible slaughter. Tho thistle was immediately adopted as the iiv of Scotland.



In a lecture which I had the honour to deliver before the Gaelic Society of Inverness in May last, I observed :—" There is no room in this paper to consider the sculptured stones of Scotland, properly so called, though some of them arc certainly curious. . . . Neither can I, for the same reason, go at length into the curious Scottish hieroglyphics so frequently met with on standing stones." Nor do I intend now to go at length into the meaning of the hieroglyphics. I shall merely indicate their suggested uses, with such sufficient clearness as shall explain the fact of their being found in juxta-position with the Christian emblem of the Cross. This paper will enable those readers of the Celtic Magazine, who are in the habit of passing one or more of these mouoliths every day of their lives, to bestow a little more attention upon them than I fear they are in the habit of doing.

There are, as far as I know at present, but ten sculptured stones extant in Ross-shire and Cromartyshire, though many more are known to have been wantonly destroyed. These stones (all of which are noticed in Dv Stewart's Sculptured Stones of Scotland) are found in eight localities, all in Easter Ross, and all situated close to the shore of the sea, or of some sea loch. Beginning in the North, the localities are as follows:—I., Kincardine (1); II., Edderton (2); III., Tarbet (1, mostly in fragments); IV., Hilton of Cadboll (1); V., Shandwick (1); VI., Nigg (I); VIL, Strathpefl'er (1); VIII., Rosemarkie (2). Of these ten, two, viz., the stone at Kincardine, and one of those at Rosemarkie, are in all probability portions of sarcophagi—and of the remaining eight seven may be divided in classes, A. B. & C., as follows :—

Class A. Rude monoliths, with hieroglyphics.
Class B. Sculptured crosses, with hieroglyphics.
Class C. Sculptured crosses, without hieroglyphics.

Class A. contains two stones at Eddertun and Strathpefl'er. Class B. contains four st.mos at Hilton of Cadboll, Shandwick, Nigg, and Rosemarkie. Class C. contains but one st .tie :it Edderton. The stone at Hilton of Cadboll, though now bearing no cross, has been pi.iced in class B., because there is every evidence of its having once been a cross. The side which bore the cross, however, has been smoothed, to receive an inscription apparently of the latter part of the 17th century, when it had been used for a grave-stone. The Tarbet cross has the remains of figures upon it, but no hieroglyphics as far as can be seen. It has not been classed, as its extremely fragmentary state renders it next to impossible to reconstruct it in a really satisfactory manner; but it will nevertheless be descrilied in Class B., its ornamentation being completely in harmony witli that of the stones in this class.

The peculiar characters, which appear upon the Scottish Standing Stones, may for our present purpose be divided into hieroglyphics and symbols; the former signifying characters unfamiliar to the eye, whoso purport and object is conjectural; the second those which the eye at once recognises, but which may have some occult meaning hidden behind them. In the first class may be mentioned the Spectacle ornament, the Spectacle ornament or Double Disc with the Sceptre, the Crescent and Sceptre, the so-called " Elephant," &c. To the second class belong animals, &c, such as the Bull, Eagle, and Fish; articles of known use, such as the Mirror, Comb, and Harp; also monstrosities, such as the Centaur, Bird-headed Human Figure, &c. Many conjectures have been hazarded as to the meaning of the hieroglyphics, some persons connecting them with the religion of the Druids, and finding an emblem of the sun in the Double Disc and Sceptre, and of the moon in the Crescent and Sceptre. Thus, Mr Algernon Herbert, writing in 1849, regarded the Sceptre, in the figure of the Serpent and Sceptre, as "the capital Latin Z, and stands for Zodiacus, while the serpent twisted round it is the sun in his abrax period, or ecliptic." In the Crescent and sceptre he regarded the Crescent as the moon, and the Sceptre as the Latin L for luna. If we wish to reconcile this theory with the fact that the hieroglyphics frequently appear upon the same sculptures as the Cross, wo must adopt Colonel Forbes Leslie's view, and regard them as " the picture of a mixed religion, and I believe truly representing a compromise—viz., Christianity acknowledged without Paganism being discarded." Another, and perhaps more rational view, is to consider the hieroglyphics as representing actual objects. Brooches have been found of the exact form of the Double Disc, and the Sceptre has been regarded as the brooch pin, the Sceptre in some sculptures passing through the Double Disc. Dr StewaH thinks that if the Crescent and Sceptre does not represent a brooch, it may be meant for a tiara. Thus, some persons regard the hieroglyphics and symbols on the crosses and pillars as representing the rank or occupation of the person buried beneath. So, when personal ornaments were comparatively rare, a brooch, or a torque would represent a chief, a fish a seafarer, a harp a harper, a mirror and comb a female, &c. Others again imagine them to signify the rude heraldry of the early septs and tribes, who adopted various objects to particularly distinguish themselves. One thing is certain, that they remained in use for several centuries, for while we find the outlines merely incised upon the rude standing stones, we find them elaborately ornamented and carved in relief upon the later Celtic Crosses.

We are aware that from the earliest times till long after the Celtic era, it was the custom of nations to bury with the deceased articles which he had valued during his lifetime, and if to bury them, why not to carve them on his monument also i The habit of depicting upon a man's tombstono the implements of his trade, which was common during the Roman era, is not yet quite obsolete, while that of representing a sword and helmet above a soldier's remains is quite common. All old English churches abound in achievements, and coats-of-arms emblazoned on tablets. Any of the theories, therefore, I have previously mentioned may be easily reconciled with the appearance of theso strange figures, alongside of the Christian Cross.*

* The Into Mr Chalmers would appenr to have been inclined to ascribe a Gnosti origin to some of th" hieny \vp!i>«, but :w li" precise 'lata have been given to go upon a mere mention of the fact i • .inlilei. nt.

But enough for these characters at large, as I must now enumerate the figures which appear upon the Eoss-shire and Cromartyshire sculptures. They are ten in number, counting only those which are most generally in use. The Crescent and Sceptre occurs four times (thrice upon the Bosemarkie cross, the only known example in Scotland), the Double Disc and Sceptre thrice, and the Double Disc without Sceptre once. These have been already alluded to. The Single Disc occurs twice on the Hilton stone, and may represent a brooch, or the round target carried by the Picts, the ornamentation greatly resembling that of the targets of the last century; but as the two Discs occupy the usual placo of the Double Disc, below the Crescent and Sceptre, they must be looked upon as an imperfect representation of the Double Disc. The Elephant occurs but once, on the Shandwick stone, where it appears with two sheep between the legs, and an animal, apparently a dog, in front of the head. It has been ornamented with a Celtic zig-zag pattern now much worn. Dr Stewart states that Polyamus, a writer of the second century, describes Caesar as routing tho Britons under Cassolaulus, by sending an elephant against them. It is therefore quite possible that the Picts had heard of such an animal, and it has been shrewdly conjectured that the first Celtic sculptor who essayed its portraiture, did so from a description, and that all who followed him copied from the same example, until at last it became stereotyped. That the figure is purely conventional is proved by the fact, that while the sheep is represented with his wool, the eagle with his feathers, and the monster with his scales, even in tho most elaborate carvings of the Elephant, tho ornamentation never gets beyond the filling in of the outline with an intertwisted Celtic pattern. Two Mirrors appear on tho Eosemarkie stono, and one upon the Hilton stone, where it is accompanied by the Comb. They are not, however, of the usual form. The Eagle appears thrice.* We find the Fish, apparently tho salmon, upon a rough monolith at Edderton, which it occupies along with the Double Disc and Sceptre. The Torque, or Neckplate, shares the unhewn standing stone at Strathpeffer, with the Eagle. The Harp is found but once, and is of the usual clarsach pattern. It may be mentioned that the hieroglyphics and symbols are almost entirely confined to Pictish territory, one stone only so ornamented being found in the old Northumbrian Kingdom, at Edinburgh, and one sculpture on a rock at Anwoth, in the Kingdom of Strathclyde. I am not aware of any having been found in Dalriada. I am, therefore, myself, strongly of opinion that the symbols and hieroglyphics on the rude standing stones and sculptured crosses must alike be regarded as the ■work of tho Pictish nation, the predecessors of the modern Highlander.

I will commence my account of the Sculptured Stones of Eoss and Cromarty with a description of the sarcophagus at Kincardine.

"In tho church-yard," says the Statistical Account, in 1840, "there is a stone about five feet in length, and two in breadth and thickness; it is hollow and divided into two cells, one considerably larger than the other. The ends and one of the sides are covered with carved figures and hieroglyphics; an imperial crown, and a man on horseback in tho act of darting a lance or javelin, as also what appears to be a camel, are still

* The eagle on the Shandwick stono appears in the middle of a hunting scene. Dogs and stags are of course very common in these hunting scenes, but it is worthy o note that they never appear upon any of the stones as purely conventional signs.

plainly distinguishable. It is probable that it is the half of a Sarcophagus or stone-coffin, and tradition describes it as the tomb of a Prince of Lnellin, who died of his wounds in the neighbourhood, and had his remains deposited there." "Loellin," I take it, moans Lochlin, which would seem to argue that the Prince was a Scandinavian leader, a fact which is by no means improbable*

* Bid this Sarcophagus once really hold the body of a Norse Chief? Ekkialsbakki, that is the estuary of the Ekkial or Oykel, separated Sudrland. or Sutherland (so called by the Northmen because it was the moat southern part of the Earldom of Ness and Katanes which belonged to them), from the rest of Scotland proper. As its immediate vicinity was a sort of debatenble ground, it is not surprising to read in the sagas of fierce battles having taken place here between the two rival races. About the year ]034, we learn from the Orkney in tja Sa^a, that a bloody encounter took place between Kali Hundason, Kin^ of Scotland, and Thorfinn, Earl of Orknov.'a) The Saga says that the bite of the engagement was "Torfnes on the south side of Baefiord." Mr Anderson suggests that this may be Tarbet Ness, Baefiord being the Dornoch Firth; but it Is highly improbable that the Scottish King would have marched his great host of

(a) The- identity of Kali Hundason has been frequently disputed, many antiquaries finding It impossible to reconcile the existence of such a person with the narratives of the older Scottish historians. The Orkneyinea Saga, and the Saga of Ola' Tryggrison, both state that Earl Sigurd the Stout married a daughter of Melkolf or Malcolm, Kirg of Scotland, and that their son was Earl Thorfinn. Fordun's succession of the Scottish Kings runs thus:—Malcolm MacKenneth slew Oryine MacKenneth MacThiff at Auchnebard, and becoming Kinir reigned from 1004 to 1034, and was succeeded by his grandson Duncan, the son of his only daughter Reatrice, by Crinan, Ab-thane of Dul, and Steward of the Isles. Wyntoun, following Fordun, Bays;—

Qutien dodo wes thus this Knig (Irvine (at Bardory
Malci'hne nis K\ nz, tint -1:ivik> had hymu:
And tluxttv \v\htyre in Scotland
Kyng this toalcoljiie wes rcgruind.

He states that Malcolm gave his daughter "Bethok fayre " to "Cryny" Abbot of Dunkeld, and that on the death of the King their son Dnncan succeeded him. Fordun 9ays of T>uncan (the Duncan who was slain by Macbeth), that "he enjoyed the security of peace at the hands of all, both abroad and at home." Mr Anderson thinks that, if the Saga is correct as to the date of the battle (1034), Duncan must be Kali Hundason, and that, notwithstanding Fordun's remark about a peaceful succession, a very pretty quarrel might have arisen between Duncan and Thorfinn, concerning the division of the Scottish Kingdom, they both being maternal grandsons of King Malcolm II. Skene, however (Highlanders, chap, v.), is of opinion that while the Highlanders were opposing the succession of Kenneth MacAlpine's family, and were endeavouring to re-introduce the Pict'sh mode of succession, Malcolm, Maormor of Murray, by the defeat and slaughter of Kenneth MacDuff at Monievaird, succeeded in seizing the Scottish crown. He states that this Malcolm made peace with Earl Sigurd the Stout, and gave him his daughter to wife, and that after reigning from 1004 to 1030, he was succeeded by Malcolm MacKenneth MacDuff (a descendant of Kenneth MacAlpin), whom he identifies with Kali Hundason. Speaking of these conclusions he says;—"It will be observed tha*. the author has here alto

£ ether departed from the generally received history, and that in place of Malcolm II., said to ave reigned thirty years, he has placed tico Malcolms, of different families, the first of whom reigned twenty-six and the latter four years. This view ho hat adopted in consequence of finding the most remarkable coincidence between the Irish Annals and the Norse Sagas, both of whrch agree in these particulars." Professor Munch shares these views with Skene. Ske»e gives as his authorities—1, Orkneyinga Sasa ; 2, Flatey Book ; 3, Annals of Tigernac; 4, Annals of Ulster. No. 3 states that Malcolm MacMaelbrigd MacKuadri, King of Alban, died in 1029, and that Malcolm MacKenneth, King of Alban, died in 1034 ; and No^ 4 corroborates this, but does not say that Malcolm MacMaelbrigd was kin«r. Skene would seem, however, to have changed the opinions expressed in the Highlanders (ls:VT) for in his preface to the Chronicles of the Picts and Scots (1867), and in that to Felix Skene's translation of Fordun's Scotieronicon (1872), he states that Miilcolm MacKenneth reigned from H'0-l to 1034. Furth-r, in the latter, he states that Malcolm had two daughters, one married to Crinan the father of King Pun an, and the other to Earl Sigurd, father of Earl Thorfinn. He then foe<* on to say that there was war between Duncan and Thorfln, owing to the territory each claimed in right of his mother, and that Thorfinn established his power in the North, thus identifying Duncan wilh Kali Hundason of the Saga. The Dnan Alhanaeh, the Chronicle of the Scots (Colhertine MS.), the Chronicle of the Scots and Picts, the Register of the Priory of St Andrews, the Cronicon Elegiacum, the Kcalacronica. the Chronicle of Huntingdon, the Chronicle of the JMct ■ ;tnd .-cots (SirT. Phillipps), the Chronicle of ihn Scots (Cottomnn, Clfiudins), the Chronicles of the Sc U (Cottonin-n, vitellius), the Chronicon Iiythraicum,and the Iri^h version of the Pictish ('lm>i,i.■'« give Malcolm MacKenneth a r,i- n ..f :',0 years ; and the Prophecy of St It." chun :V*. There :u ■* threfore ten Latin and tw« Ct hie MSS. in fiivnr if :\0 \<*ars, one Celtic of :r, and two Celtic of 5 years'reign, the two latter inieipobtin:: a King Malcolm MacMaelbrigd with a reign of 25 yeara. I have uot room here to pursue this interesting enquiry further,

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