A blog that backs a bi-monthly magazine covering all the islands of Scotland
Thursday, 25 August 2011
St Marnock lived an insular sort of life in the 7th Century, but his name is spoken daily while incorporated into the Scottish town of Kilmarnock, the Irish seaside settlement of Portmarnock and the Glasgow suburb of Dalmarnock. His monastic days were spent on the one square-mile Inchmarnock, photographed here from Arran with Bute behind. A former resident was the so-called 'Queen of the Inch' whose preserved skeleton has been carbon-dated to the Bronze Age. By the 8th & 9th Centuries, the monastic traditions were flourishing and the teaching of literacy to novices involved practising writing on slates. Inscriptions in Latin, Old Irish and Gaelic have been found together with graffiti. There are three farms on the island and, although only one is now worked, it does maintain organic standards.