Struth Sees Fairies (Scotland)

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john o london's with fairies


As a student of ‘Faerie’ and ‘The Sight’ I was particularly pleased that you gave space to E Bayly Lampeter’s inquiry (March 7). Let me briefly describe four experiences.

The first fairy I met was alone upon a hillside near Aberfoyle, where Robert Kirk wrote his Commonwealth of Fairies. She was very friendly, beckoned me to follow her, and eventually showed me the most wonderful of sights.

One afternoon in Arran I saw ten fairies playing out and in among gorse bushes and round about the grazing sheep. The sheep were quite undisturbed except that if a fairy went too near one of them it would trot off for a few yards.

Wandering in a wood in Arran one morning I heard the silvery, plangent accents of fairies, and following the sounds I saw quite a clan of them hurrying along a green footpath. They seemed angry about something. Observing me, they chattered loudly, scattered as one sees a flock of excited sparrows scattering, increased their speed and fled.

Tramping near Loch Rannoch I was attracted by tuneful tones coming from clumps of rhododendrons, and advancing cautiously beheld the most beautiful dancing. I was too interested to count the number of fairies, concentrating upon how close I could get. When I was within ten paces of them one sighted me, and alarming the dancers she shepherded them in among the bushes. I shall never forget the glance she gave me as she disappeared and the gesture and grace of her exit, I have seen approached only by the incomparable, Pavlova herself.

Struan Robertson                                           Buchlyvie, Stirlingshire

Robertson, Struan ‘Fairies Are Not Dead!’, John O’London Weekly (28 March 1936), 1023: for other John O’London fairy letters follow the link.

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