Into the Fairy Hill

Classic Folktales of the Scottish Highlands

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Available for pre-order / backorder

About the Book

Headstrong heroines and hot-tempered chieftains, loch monsters and hill fairies, cattle raids and clan feuds, wise animals and foolish saints: the Scottish Highlands’ folktales date back centuries and preserve the history and beliefs of a people deeply rooted in their land and culture. Oral traditions connect the modern world with the hearts and minds of Scottish Highlanders across the ages, bringing their world to life in vivid detail.
This anthology includes new and approachable translations of folktales from the Scottish Highlands and Nova Scotia, providing extensive commentary on this rich storytelling tradition. Each story is annotated with information about its origins and any insights into its meaning. The original Scottish Gaelic texts, collected from a wide variety of rare and obscure sources, are provided in an appendix.

About the Author(s)

Michael S. Newton was an assistant professor in the Celtic Studies department of St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia from 2008 to 2013. He has written a multitude of books and articles about Gaelic culture and history and is a leading authority on Scottish Gaelic heritage in North America. He lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Bibliographic Details

Michael S. Newton
Foreword by Ruairidh MacIlleathain

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 278
Bibliographic Info: 7 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2022
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9002-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4767-8
Imprint: McFarland

Book Reviews & Awards

• “Michael Newton is to be commended on his new collection of Scottish Gaelic folktales, which will be a valuable resource for the general and academic reader alike. He has done a great service to the Gaelic community, not only by re-editing a sizable stock of folklore material—emending the errors and outdated orthography of editions long out of print—but also by providing fresh, accessible English translations that will enable a wide audience to enjoy these delightful stories anew.”—Natasha Sumner, associate professor, Celtic languages and literatures, Harvard University

• “You hold in your hands a book that is both intellectually fascinating and emotionally spellbinding. As one of today’s preeminent scholars of Scottish Gaelic language and its wider culture, Michael Newton has succeeded in breathing back to life the dying embers of the ‘ceilidh house’ of bygone times, that humble yet far-reaching University of Life. In an era when knowledge can too often lack wisdom, where cognition can too readily lack imagination’s vision, this book calls back the soul’s long-ebbing tide. May these tales find new life in those who hear them shared aloud today. May they open out new depths of meaning in these troubled times. A blessing on the house and ‘Peace be here!’ where they find currency. And as the tradition had it, ‘So be it.’”—Alastair McIntosh, honorary senior research fellow, University of Glasgow