Dowles-Howden Limited   ©2011 - 2016 The Friends of Thomas The Rhymer Society
Prophecies
Many of Thomas' predictions foretold the coming of disaster or evil.
One such prophecy told that the old Kirk in Kelso 'would fall when at its fullest.'
In 1770, during a crowded ceremony in the old Kirk, (which was in the ruins of the Abbey,) a piece of lime fell from the ceiling. There was much consternation among the congregation as they rushed for the door. They feared another of Thomas' predictions was about to come true. The Kirk was then deserted, and has never again been given the chance to fall upon its occupants.

"Tyde what may, whate'er betyde
Haig will be Haig o' Bemersyde."

The Haig family motto being;               "Tyde what may"

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"When the heron leaves the tree,
The Laird o' Gight shall landless be."

This came to fruition in 1780 when the Gordons o' Gight lost their lands. The Gordons had moved north from Berwickshire, and for many centuries had been wealthy land-owners.
The herons deserted the Bog o' Gight, where they had nested for many years, in favour of the neighbouring estate of Lord Haddo.
He must have believed in the prophecy of Thomas, as he uttered the words:
"Let the birds come and do them no harm, for the lands will soon follow"
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"The burn o' breid shall be dunged wi' deid men"

The burn o'breid refers to the burn of Bannock; bannock being an old Scottish word for a loaf. The "Battle of Bannockburn" in 1314 saw the burn filled, or dunged, with dead bodies, as the English soldiers were cut down while fleeing the battle-field.

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"At Elden tree, if you shall be,
A brigg ower Tweed you there may see"

From the site of the Eildon tree it is just possible to see the Leaderfoot viaduct. There are now three bridges at this location.

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"A horse shall gang on Carollside brae,
Till the girth gaw his side in twae"

Carolside is an estate one mile north of Earlston. The prophecy is thought to relate to wars and famine which would one day ravage Scotland. This happened in Thomas' lifetime, and continued for many centuries.

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