Monday, February 9, 2009

Kirking, tartan and rebellious spirit

- The pageantry of my church's Kirking of the Tartans and my honor of acting as Liturgist for the service. The Kirkin' o' the Tartan tradition is an old Highland one. After the defeat of the Scots by the English in 1746, the wearing of the tartan and the keeping of any Highland ways or culture was forbidden in hopes this would forever subdue the rebellious Scottish spirit. However, as the Scots were fervent Christians, and canny as well, they clung to their ancient traditions by putting them underground.

- The Kirkin' was an important part of this in that one Sunday a year, the populace went to church wearing a concealed piece of the tartan and, at a certain moment set aside in the service, the tartan was touched while the minister pronounced a blessing on all tartans and the Scots once more pledged their loyalty and respect for their old traditions.

- Luckily, there is no need to conceal the tartans anymore and many people wore them proudly to the service. However, the rebellious Scottish spirit is still firmly in place in me (or so my mother says.) :)


Jannie Funster said...

Aye, Lassie but do they say wot they be a-wearin' under the tartan kilts?

But seriously, this tale thrilled me. Such eye-opening trivia, each to his own smuggled bit of tartan and time-honored traditions.

I LOVE THE SCOTS!! Those rebels.

Lynn said...

I hear that it is nothing! But can't be sure. :) I love the scots, too!