Anne Lister diary transcriptions Anne Lister's diary 1828 Anne Lister's diary July 1828

Tuesday 22 July 1828

9 40/60
1 20/60

Lay quietly with her from eight and forty minutes for an hour. She is very fond of me certainly and not very brisk at the thought of being so near home. Breakfast at 11 20/60 & Mrs & Miss Macdougal of Dunolly Castle called & sat with us near an hour. Off from the inn (as bad an one for eating & drinking and a close double-bedded room in the roof as any we have been in) at 12¼ & on board The Highlander steam boat at 12 25/60. Soon tired of waiting on board. The 3 steamers (the same concern) for Glasgow, Inverary & Tobermory all close alongside each other. Step from 1 to the other. Saunter about on the little quay. The Loch Buy party come up. He very distant to Miss MacLean, the rest very well. He annoyed at the great service she has lately done a widowed sister of his. On board again & off from Oban at 1 5/60. At 2 20/60 land the Loch Buy party at Achnacraig in Mull. The Argyllshire group of mountains magnificent. The [Inorvern] hills or range of hill very fine. The lady’s rock hardly distinguishable. At 2 55/60 two little black bits of rock (called the lady’s rock) just peeping above the water. A larger bit of ditto ditto likewise just peeping up in the same line, but nearer Lismore.

Lady’s Rock
Photo by RichTea, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike license 2.0

The legend behind the name of this uninhabited rock, submerged at high tide, is that it the site of the attempted murder, by the chief of clan Maclean, of his clan Campbell wife. In 1527 Lachlan Maclean, finding his arranged marriage to be less than satisfactory, attempted to make murder look like an accident by leaving his wife Catherine stranded on the rock at night. Believing her to be dead he staged a funeral and informed her father of the sad news, only to then discover that she had been rescued by fisherman. Lachlan Maclean was later murdered in his bed by his wife’s brother.

At 3 5/60 close under Duart castle. Large square tower with other later building. On point of rock. Don’t see the entrance. Lately sold, but General Fitzroy McLean, descended from the Duart branch & was not anxious to buy it. Magnificent mountains of Argyll & the low, green, fertile island of Lismore & Morvern mountains. Magnificent view all up & below Loch Linhe. Castle Duart & Ben Cruachan, now at 3 20/60 when we set down passengers. Sea quite smooth. Lovely day. Little sun, not too much. At 4 10/60 at Ardtornish (right) (vid. Scottish Tourist, 277/415), very small remain. No “stair, so straight, so high,” &c to be seen. Land here the Gregorsons, Mrs & Miss. Mrs Gregorson sister to Loch Buy Maclean. Very civil. Asked us to go see her. Her white house just above the castle. At 4 25/60 Lochaline & square tower castle at the head of it. Used to be beautiful. Miss McLeans’s mother’s family, Cameron of Glendessary, lived near here. Wood all cut down around. The loch quite bare now. At 5 50/60 off Aros Castle (picturesque, not large remain, finely situated) & land passengers. This property purchased from the Duke of Argyll 5 or 6 years ago by the McLean’s of Coll after being out of the family about a century.

Aros Castle (Isle of Mull)
Photo by PaulT (Gunther Tschuch), licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

At 7¼ double the isle of Calve (about 250 acres) (not water enough to pass the straight) & enter the beautiful little bay of Tobermory, the little white town picturesquely situated along the water’s edge and thence creeping up the hill in a corner of the bay. At the little pier head at 7 25/60. (Built by Telford who forgot to make a stair to it. Might have made it when it was mentioned to him for £5. Would not. The thing afterwards cost £40. He contracted for £3,000 & did the job for £1,500). The family not expecting us, the little boat merely came off for the bread-box from Oban. Off in the little boat at 7 42/60. Land at 8. Very glad to see us. Very kind & attentive. Tea. Came up to my room at 10¾. 2 letters from my aunt, Paris. 2 from Mariana Lawton. 1 from my sister (Shibden) & 1 from Mr James Briggs (Halifax). From 11 to 11 50/60 reading my letters. Good accounts. My aunt had been rather not well lately. All else well. Rents well paid. Mariana said Mrs Milne had told her I was become a tufthunter. Very fine day. 

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