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Chapter Three

The Valley of Kings

The story is told in the March, 1968 issue of National Geographic, that in the sixth century an ancient kingdom was founded in part of Scotland, which is now southern Argyle, by an invasion of Irish, called Scots. Throughout history men of the Irish shore crossed over into the northern land. One such wave, about 500 AD, brought the Christian Scots from Scotia (as the Romans called Ireland). They created their own Kingdom of Dalraida. In 563 AD, the slaughter was slowed by the coming of St. Colums out of Ireland. The other great Saints after him and the Picts became Christian. As Norse attacks on the northern islands weakened them, they turned more to their Scot Kin and fellow Christians. In 843 AD, Kenneth MacAlpin, half Scott and half Pict, merged the Celtic Moieties (special word) and became the first king of Gaelic Alba (Scotland was not yet Scotland in name). The name of the villages here echoed an earlier age (Kilrunner, Kilmichael, Kilbride, Kil referring to a monk’s cell of medieval times). When the author came to Kilmartin, he stopped, its graveyard contained burial slabs of the 14th to the 18th centuries. It was the site of the coronation when Kenneth MacAlpin united both peoples, and became King of Alba, now called Scotland. This place is called the "Valley of Kings". This place, called Kilmartin, still teaches the Gaelic language after many years of suppression. I have searched the files, and no recorded names of Kilmartin’s have been found. However, it is nice to know that the name was known a long time ago and marks a place in the evolving Gaelic nostalgic inclinations, living in the soft afterglow of antiquity.

Chapter 4

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