Jump to content

Just Curious: Medieval History and Identity


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 41
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

The two Shetland document collections are just that - SHETLAND document books.


Shouldn't that read "SHETLAND documents that have been permitted to survive books"???


Self-censoring by the chantry seems to have (allegedly) been quite rife in Shetland history, dressed up as "convenient" "acts of god" of course.


Or are those long standing allegations all hoaxes too? You know, sinking ships, mysterious unexplained outbreaks of fire and suchlike....Whereby certain types of records and/or periods of history of portions of the local chantry simply vanished in their entirity.


Assuming of course all were genuine and innocent incidents, one cannot but help be tempted to conclude that for some strange reason the luck and deviousness of the characters involved, that time and again allowed them to come up smelling of roses and with a profit, regardless of how much sharn they waded in to, seemed to suddenly evaporate time and again whenever they decided to store or relocate (or had such forced upon them) written records of their "business".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am glad that Ghostrider has moved on from suggesting that the Shetland Documents books were censored by their editors. Now we have a theory that what he mysteriously calls the 'chantry' burned the records to preserve their reputations.


If Ghosty takes the trouble to open the volumes he will find plenty of material to the discredit of Shetland's ruling class - vast amounts of it, in fact. Take for instance the 17,000 word complaint by 750 Shetlanders of 1577. The problem isn't that it was burned, but that experts like Ghosty don't bother to read it ...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^^ Try reading what I wrote. I said a form of self-censoring/extreme "misfortune" when storing/transporting records was apparently "rife", not that it was "total". The fact remains that when it comes to the chantry (I doot auld Kunnisbra caad dem da chantry tuh, is well is wis Ness fok) in Shetland, we are told that for many of them "no records exist" for certain periods of their history and/or spheres of their activity, and its been a long standing and widely held belief by those on the other side of the coin, that they were "lost" in one or other of these alleged "questionable" shipwrecks, fires etc. Now either present day Reps. of these families/businesses and/or official record holders/archivists are lying, or then there's some truth in the belief their "loss" wasn't quite an "act of God", you tell me.


What got as far as Edinburgh may well have survived reasonably well, the problem (and subsequent gaping holes in the written records of areas of Shetland history) is in the stuff that was slated to go there, but never arrived, and in the lesser stuff of which Edinburgh had no particular interest, which when someone went looking for what was known to once exist, simply could find no trace of it.


As for the censoring by the Editors of the works concerned, I thought keldaberg had already settled one, with the admission that they are "SHETLAND document books", not a record of "every medieval and early modern European document that mentions Shetland or Shetlanders". The difference between the former and latter, and how in having it constitutes censorship is, I would hope, obvious.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Symbister, 1 January 1796:


‘Christian! Sees du da latest I’m fun ida chantry! - a bundle o documents dat pits wis ida very warst o lights! Whit tinks du will posterity say if dey have access ta dis lot? I’m said dis again an again, we most ta have a clean sweep o wir muniments ta preserve da gude name o Symbister! Whaar’s yun firelighters?’


Lady S.: ‘Laekly, laekly. I’m heard it all afore, Johnny Bruce. Nothin’ll be done aboot it, du lazy trooker, and dan in 200 years time dy muniments, as du caas dem, ’ll be in da Archives in Lerook. Da maist du can hoop is dat fokk’ll be ower busy playin wi der computers ta go dere an read dem.’

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^^ Best strik alang da Factors den, neest you're in ower, let dem ken whaur dir been hoidin aa dis time. Last I wis awaur, dey wir still seekin dem.


Da maist du can hoop is dat fokk’ll be ower busy playin wi der computers ta go dere an read dem.’


Dis is brawly fine an aa dat, bit is Im sed heer afore, sum o' wis haesna da abeelity o' legs ta stramp oot ower da door sten, lat alane makk a nyuk o' Hey's yaurd. Whit cums o' wis?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

^ I might be persuaded to do a tad of research on Your behalf then, Ghostrider, my dear. I take it that hand scanners and/or photocopying facilities are available for such a purpose, Brian?


And whist we're on the subject:


Just to clarify, the material from Jørn's book which is missing from the Shetland Documents books was suppressed following instructions from the Papal chancery. For further details see Baigent et al., The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail.


From one academic to another, it would be appreciated if one could actually use the correct Harvard referencing - or are you literally referring to the entire publication? :wink:


Ta from her in academic mood, PG Dip WS (Ruskin).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

An Ghostrider, any discussion or idder assistance aboot historical matters (as opposed to jousting), say da wird, and I will be pleased to partake!


Very well, I shall take you up on this, as I have any number of genuine historical questions stretching back over the last 400+ years concerning the activities of the Symbister Estate, and their predecessors in the Ness, that I, and others would be very curious to have answered.


I don't expect to have them all answered by any means, but they cover such a lengthy timeline, that I would hope, if as you appear to claim, a resonable amount of Symbister records remain. That unlike others who have attempted to have them answered previously, and been told "virtually no Symbister records exist", at least a reasonable percentage can.


Email would be the most suitable method of correspondence for me, is there an email I could use (PM me here with if if you're not will to post it publically). All I can see on the Museum & Archives site is a query form which is directed towards an undisclosed email address, and it would appear to be intended for brief queries rather than lengthy/detailed questions.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...