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ALTHOUGH to-day belief in the existence of the
/\ each-idsge, or water-horse, seems to have disappeared
1 V completely, it is only the matter of a few decades
since every locality of the Highlands and Islands was
reputed to possess a loch haunted by such a creature. The
prevalence of this belief is attested by the number and
variety of the folk-tales still told of the water-horse and its
sinster activities. There is scarcely a district of Celtic
Scotland that does not have its water-horse tradition.
Similarly, belief in the existence of the farbh-uisgc, or
water-bull, has waned, though at no time did this creature
occupy so much of the attention of the natives as did the
The idea that lochs, such as Loch Hourn and Loch Awe.
were the abode of some fearsome creature of monstrous
dimensions has been revived in our own time by the recent
graphic descriptions given by independent eye-witnesses of
the world-famous Loch Ness Monster.
Shieling of the One Night.
In a fertile glen not far distant from the village of
Shawbost, in the west of Lewis, there lies a shieling that
for more than a century has gone by a Gaelic name meaning
the Shieling of the One Night. This shieling was started
by a couple of families who agreed to sharing equally their
rights in it. One evening in June, just at the commence-
ment of shieling-time, two cousins in their early twenties,
known locally as Fair Mary and Dark Mary, occupied the
shieling for the first time since its erection. Having milked
their cows and put in a spell at the churning, they sat in
the low doorway of their summer dwelling, singing and
knitting until the hour for retiring.
As they were putting a light on the cruisie, there came to

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