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May 15th 1692

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A prisoner in Fairyland

The Rev. Robert Kirk was minister for Aberfoyle for over twenty years. He was a Gaelic scholar and translated the metrical psalms into Gaelic. He was also the author of a somewhat strange manuscript entitled ‘The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Faunes and Fairies’.

It is related that Mr Kirk was walking on a dun-shi or fairy hill near Aberfoyle when he sunk down in a swoon which was taken for death. “After the ceremony of a seeming funeral the form of the Rev. Robert Kirk appeared to a relation and commanded him to go to Graeme of Duchray. ‘Say to Duchray, who is my cousin as well as your own, that I am not dead, but a captive in Fairyland; and only one chance remains for my liberation. When the posthumous child, of which my wife has been delivered since my disappearance, shall be brought to baptism, I will appear in the room, when, if Duchray shall throw over my head the knife or dirk which he holds in his hand, I may be restored to society; but if this is neglected I am lost for ever.’” 

It is said that Mr Kirk did appear at the christening and “was visibly seen.”  However, Duchray was so astonished that he neglected to throw his dirk over the apparition and the unfortunate Robert Kirk is still presumably a captive in Fairyland.

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