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Hourn, Loch

A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

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Hourn, a sea-loch in Glenelg parish, Inverness-shire, dividing Glenelg proper from Knoydart. Opening from Sleat Sound, at a point 6 miles SW of Glenelg village, and penetrating 14 miles east-south-eastward, it makes three successive sweeps in three different directions, and contracts somewhat regularly from a width of 3¾ miles at the entrance to a width of only 1½ furlong at the head. ' The situation of this estuary is one of great natural grandeur, and the high walls of mountain that overhang it may well have given the idea of gloom and horror conveyed in its singular name-.the " Lake of Hell " The glen itself is a deep and cavernous cleft, the loch beginning as a narrow channel, with walls of precipice on either side, often just redeemed from utter harshness by the pines which keep a precarious footing wherever they can. . . . Point after point, precipice after precipice, stands out each a mailed head with its dark plume waving over it.'-Ord. Sur., shs. 72, 71, 1880-83. See Glenelg, Knoydart, Ben Scrial, Corryvarligan, and p. 520 of an article by Captain Thomas P. White in Good words for 1874.

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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