Saturday, 6 July 2019

Orkney Pride

It's London Pride today and so we thought we'd see if we had any rainbow-themed archives to celebrate...

The obvious place to start was with John W. Scott's wonderful book of Orkney and Shetland weather words:

gaa: a fragment of rainbow... a small rainbow in the horizon... a spot or ray of a rainbow colour which appears near the sun, generally in dry windy weather, and which indicates some change in the weather

The word also appears in The Orkney Dictionary by Margaret Flaws and Gregor Lamb:

gaa n. sun-dog, bit of rainbow before or behind the

'A gaa behind ye needno mind,
A gaa afore, lukk for a roar'

Ernest Walker Marwick's papers were the next port of call and they contain a paper written by George Marwick on the subjects of Rainbows, Aurora Borealis, Igasill The Tree of Life and a legendary Stronsay Wedding:

Rainbows foretold the birth of a baby boy. Orkney Archive Reference D31/4/1/2
Our last (tenuous) rainbow themed archive is an excerpt from a 1783 edition of The Morning Post, and Daily Advertiser which briefly reports the Orcadian exploits of a piratical smuggler aboard the Rainbow Cutter:

Orkney Archive reference D1/660/25 [H1]

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