Monzie

   MONZIE, a parish, in the county of Perth; containing, with the villages of Chapelhill and Herriotfield, 1261 inhabitants, of whom 118 are in the village of Monzie, 3 miles (N. N. E.) from Crieff. The name Monzie is derived from the Gaelic Moighidh, signifying "a level tract." There are few events of importance connected with the place; but numerous relics of antiquity, of both Druidical and Roman origin, are still visible, although all historical memorials identifying them with any particular transactions worthy of note are entirely lost. The parish is twelve miles long and about seven in extreme breadth, and contains about 50,000 acres. It is bounded on the north by Dull, Weem, and Kenmore parishes; on the south by Crieff; on the east by Fowlis; and on the west by Monivaird and Comrie. This is a mountainous district lying on the south side of the Grampian hills, the only habitable portions being two narrow valleys called the Back and the Fore part, which are separated from each other by a ridge of lofty hills four miles broad. Only about one-third of the land is arable; the remainder is covered with heath, coarse grass, and moss, appropriated to the pasturage of vast flocks of sheep. The lands are watered by the Almond, the Shaggie, the Keltie, and the Barvick, the first of which, a considerable river, running for about twelve miles along the boundary of the parish from east to west, falls into the Tay two miles above Perth. All the streams are stocked with trout, and in the Almond there is likewise a plentiful supply of sea-trout. Like most of the Highland districts, the parish is famed for its cascades, which are numerous in all the streams, and of which the Barvick especially exhibits an almost uninterrupted succession throughout its whole course, the effect being greatly increased by the abrupt, lofty, and, in many places, well-wooded banks of rock between which the stream passes.
   The soil is light and dry, and tolerably fertile, though in general rather shallow: the usual white and green crops are raised. The sheep are the Highland or blackfaced, and to their improvement great attention is paid; the cattle are mostly a cross between the Highland and Lowland, but a few Ayrshire cows are kept for the dairy. The character of the husbandry is good, and considerable advances have been made in draining and trenching; but the expense of procuring lime, which is brought from Perth, a distance of from fourteen to seventeen miles, is a serious impediment to agricultural improvement. Many of the farm-steadings have lately been rebuilt on a better plan; but much in this respect remains yet to be done. The parish being to a great extent pastoral, there is much land uninclosed; where fences have been erected, however, they are in general in good condition. The prevailing rocks are slate, sandstone, and limestone: there are two slate-quarries, and one of superior sandstone of a red colour, and of great durability; but the limestone, on account of its inferior quality and its distance from coal is not wrought. The mansion-houses are, Monzie Castle, the residence of Campbell of Monzie, a massive square building with a circular turret at each corner, erected in 1806, and containing a superior collection of paintings, ancient armour, &c.; Cultoquhey House, the seat of the Maxtones, an elegant edifice, from a design by Smirke, erected about eighteen years since; and Glen-Almond Cottage, the occasional residence of the Patton family, also a modern and comfortable house. Monzie and Gilmerton are the chief villages: the first, often called the Kirkton, consists of a cluster of cottages, nestling in a sunny corner round the church; the other, the larger of the two, has sprung up within these few years. There are a few hand-loom weavers. A fair for sheep and general traffic is held at Monzie on the 22nd of August: a fair on the 23rd, formerly held here, has been transferred to the neighbouring parish of Crieff, and now makes one of its eight fairs. Oats and barley are sent hence to Crieff, and potatoes to London, by way of Perth. The Glen-Almond road, one of the grand passes into the Highlands, runs through the parish, besides which there are several roads for local convenience. The rateable annual value of Monzie is £4300.
   The ecclesiastical affairs are subject to the presbytery of Auchterarder and synod of Perth and Stirling; patron, the Crown. The stipend of the minister is £159, of which a tenth is paid by the exchequer; and there is a manse, with a glebe of twelve acres of superior land. The church, a neat but unpretending edifice, was built in 1830-1, and contains sittings for 512 persons. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship. There is a parochial school, in which are taught the classics, French, and geometry, with the usual branches of education; the master has a house, a salary of £34, and about £30 per annum in fees. At a small distance from the village of Monzie, upon an eminence called Knock-Durroch, "the oaken knoll," is an intrenchment of an oval form, supposed to be Roman; and on the estate of Cultoquhey is another of the same kind, but considerably larger. The principal relic of antiquity, however, is the camp at Fendoch, thought to have been constructed by the soldiers under Agricola or one of his successors. It is situated upon tableland, near the mountain pass called the Small Glen, and not far from the fort of Dunmore, which had the complete command of the passage; it covers forty-five acres of ground, and is said to have been capable of containing 12,000 men. Adjacent to it are several large cairns, and other relics pointing it out as the arena, in ancient times, of important military transactions. In the vicinity of Glen-Almond is a cave called the "Thief's Cave," from its having been the retreat of a noted sheepstealer called Alaster Baine, who at last was executed at Perth; and near this cave is a very curious natural pile of large stones, called "the Kirk of the Grove," in the vicinity of which stands a solitary aged pine, marking out the reputed sepulchre of Fingal's father. Towards the upper extremity of the pass before named is a stone of cubical form, eight feet high, said to point out the grave of the far-famed Ossian, the Caledonian bard.

A Topographical dictionary of Scotland. . 1856.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Monzie — (spr. Monsi), Kirchspiel in der schottischen Grafschaft Perth; 1400 Ew.; berühmte Höhlen (bes. Kirk of the Wood) u. Ossians Grab …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

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