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Archive for October, 2014

Dumb Proctor Lochwinnoch
Renfrewshire-based bookseller and publisher Chris Morrison recently sent me these two Victorian sketches of the Dumb Proctor, an early medieval monument now used as a grave-marker in the public cemetery at Lochwinnoch. The images come from Volume 2 of Archaeological and Historical Collections of the County of Renfrew, published in 1890.

In a blogpost last year I mentioned that the Dumb Proctor was originally a free-standing cross carved in the last phase of the Govan sculptural style. I also showed my own attempt at a reconstruction of how it might look today if the cross-head hadn’t been cut off. The 1890 book was referred to in passing but I didn’t cite it in the bibliography at the end of the post.

I am grateful to Chris for providing the sketches, which I’ve added to my file of notes on this enigmatic monument. The Dumb Proctor is one of a number of Govan-style stones for which I’m hoping to compile detailed ‘biographies’ relating to history, art, preservation, re-use and conservation.

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Links

Blogpost (2013): The Dumb Proctor of Lochwinnoch

The Grian Press (Scottish local history)
Grian Books (rare & out-of-print items)

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New book

Strathclyde and the Anglo-Saxons in the Viking Age
Those of you who have visited my other blog Senchus in the past couple of days will already know about my new book. It’s being printed at the moment and will be published later this month, by Birlinn of Edinburgh.

It tells the story of the kings of Strathclyde in the period when the Govan Stones were carved (ninth to eleventh centuries AD). The central chapters highlight the relationship between Strathclyde and Anglo-Saxon England during a troubled era when ambitious Viking warlords posed a threat to both kingdoms. As a major centre of power of the Clyde kings, Govan inevitably gets quite a few namechecks, as well as appearing on several maps. The carved stones in the old parish church are also mentioned a number of times. In the photo section in the middle of the book the first image is a stunning portrait of the hogbacks by Tom Manley whose camera has documented so much of Govan’s heritage in recent years.

A more detailed description, with a list of contents, will appear at the Senchus blog when the book is published.

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