Islay, Jura and Colonsay A Historical Guide  by David Caldwell. Birlinn Press, Edinburgh, 2001 $17.95 226 pages
This handy book details a myriad of pre-historical and historical sites on the three islands or Islay, Jura and Colonsay, the three southernmost islands of the Inner Hebrides. The book is divided into two parts. In the first, Dr. Caldwell gives a fine history of the importance of these three islands from the Mesolithic through the 20th Century.
The second part is a gazetteer of selected sites and monuments. Because the three islands have hundreds of sites on them, Dr. Caldwell has indicated which should be considered essential viewing. These three islands, which are often bypassed in favor of Iona and Skye, are historically of great importance in the history of the Lords of the Isles. Finlaggen, a major center for the Lordship of the Isles is located on Islay and is being excavated by Dr. Caldwell.
These islands are not on the major tourist routes in Scotland but would certainly seem to be well worth a visit. The islands can be reached by plane or ferry.
The book is extremely readable, informative and enjoyable. It suffers from one and only one serious drawback: the lack of an index. This would have been invaluable for locating the specific sites mentioned in the text.
Dr. Caldwell will be lecturing on March 26th at the St. Andrews Society. (See article on p. 1).
Some have suggested that we have a game. Crosswords are too hard on a computer so we are trying a cryptogram a message in code. Can you break the code and identify the source of the quote?
uli dv urtsg mlg uli tolib mli irxsvh mli slmli,
Let us know if you want us to continue with cryptograms!
The answer is in the next issue!