The Lore of Scotland, By Jennifer Westwood and Sophia Kingshill

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The Independent Culture

As Scotland move ever closer towards independence, this bulky compendium suggests that it was a big mistake to assert dominion over a land so well stocked with spooks, witches and demons.

Lady Macbeth has been seen washing her hands with stones in River Ness, near Inverness. At Carterhaugh in Lothian, Tamlane's Well was the site of a fairy entrapment that later inspired a poem for Burns and a hit for Fairport Convention.

Not all the entries are rural or set in the mists of time. One night, the Southern Necropolis in Glasgow drew "hundreds of children, many carrying primitive weapons, hunting for 'a vampire with iron teeth' who had killed and eaten 'two wee boys'." The date: 23 September 1954.