“THE Oban troglodytes bid fair to illustrate to the fullest extent the diversity of specialist opinion. The controversy starts at the beginning. Mr. Anderson Smith, who write on the subject in our present number, is a lucid protagonist for the troglodyte opinion. The Rev. Dr. Stewart of Lochaber, on the other hand, it is stated, denies that the cave was ever inhabited, and believes that the shells and bones were washed into their present place by the sea. All opinion, however, must be more or less tentative until the completion of the exploration puts enquirers in possession of the whole facts.”
* * * * *
“THE Culdees are not yet disposed of. Their precise character, the nature of their organization, their relations with the early Scottish missionary church, and, generally speaking, their place in the religious system of eleventh century Scotland, have furnished forth many a goodly page of historical discussion. Were they laymen, were they monks, were they canons? Dr. A. Allaria, in the Scottish Review for January, essays one more answer. He first argues (with many good points on his side) that the order followed by St. Patrick and his disciples was clerical, and belonged to that Apostolic Institute now known as Canons Regular. Next he proceeds to cite evidence, ancient and modern, to buttress his opinion that the Culdees were substantially the same, clerics living in Common or Canonical Order, whose main specialty lay in their devotion to the sick. One valuable but hitherto overlooked bit of proof he cites from the observant Giraldus Cambrensis, that the Welsh Culdees (coelibes sive colidei*) were clerics, devoted to works of charity and hospitality, as many congregations of clerics had been before the rule of St. Benedict was introduced.”
* “coelibes sive coli dei” translates as “celibate or to worship God”.
* * * * *
“FROM Abernethy comes the news, chronicled by the parish minister, the Rev. D. Butler, that a sculptured stone has been discovered in the churchyard. It bears, incised, a figure resembling a crown or a rayed sun, also the figure of a bird, and what Mr. Butler takes to be an ogham inscription. Suspicions have, however, arisen as to the genuineness of the supposed antique, which has features too provokingly modern to inspire confidence.”