Corra Linn

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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Corra Linn, a fall on the river Clyde, on the boundary between Lanark and Lesmahagow parishes, Lanarkshire, ½ mile below Bonnington Linn, and 1¾ mile S of Lanark town. It makes a total descent of 84 feet, but it encounters two ledges of rock, and so is practically a series of cascades-first, a fall of a few feet; next, after a brief break, another of 30 feet; then, a tumultuous rapid of 30 yards; and, lastly, a grand concluding leap into ` a basin, enclosed by noble rocks, with trees, chiefly hazels, birch, and ash, growing out of their sides wherever there is any hold for them. ' The river, from Bonnington Linn, is all a continuous rapid, along the bottom of an Old Red sandstone chasm, narrow and 70 to 100 feet high, down which it hurries, under deep gloom and with hoarse, hollow, ever-growing roar. But, at Corra Linn, its previous tumult increases to thunder, its dash of waters is canopied with clouds of spray, sparkling at times with all the colours of the rainbow; and its cataracts blend with the scenery of a surrounding rocky amphitheatre, which rises in places to 120 feet, to produce an effect that is almost overwhelming. A gorge about 8 feet wide, a little above the linn, shows traces of an ancient drawbridge; is reached, from the brink of the chasm, by a narrow path down a shelving descent; and commands a striking view of the ruined castle of Corehouse. One excellent view, both of the linn itself and of an expanse of country westward to a distant skyline, is got from a pavilion built in 1708 on a bank overlooking the cliffs, and furnished with mirrors which reflect the scenery. Another, with backgrounds away to Ben Lomond, and with many intervening features of high interest, is got at a spot opposite the darkest part of the linn's amphitheatre, reached by a pleasant sloping path. And the best close view of the linn itself, commanding its aspects in their highest force, is got from a spot at the bottom of the amphitheatre, directly in front of the linn, down a rustic staircase of woodwork and natural rock, designed in 1829 by Lady Mary Ross, the then proprietrix. Corra Linn entrances all beholders, however fastidious or far-travelled they may be, and it has been more studied by draughtsmen, more sung by poets, than almost any other place in Scotland. See Clyde, Corehouse, and pp. 36,37, of Dorothy Wordsworth's Tour in Scotland (ed. by Princ. Shairp, 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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