Author: Mrs Clark

2019 Dunyvaig Dig!

On Tuesday 27th of August the whole school went to Dunyvaig to contribute in a archaeology dig .  A kind lady called Sophie was are tour guide showing us all the stations, for some stations examples there was a digging in the trench, photography and looking at findings and lots more.

Personally I think that everyone loved the digging the most because the pride of finding some thing is just amazing but it was probably because we got to get dirty on a school day! But when I was digging I was the only one who found something from p6/7 and I found a broken part off a clay pigeon. When we were at the photography station we got to use a professional camera and are group made silly videos and I videoed it because I don’t like cameras.

But the last thing my group did was my favorite we got to hold and see all the artifacts from last year and this year.  My favorite thing was the half a cannon ball they thought that it was from a attack when clan Donald attacked Dunyvaig.  And another cool thing from last year was a stamp with a name and date on it.  And their most recent find was a broach from the 17th century.  Then sadly the day had to end.

By Caitidh

More Gaelic Poetry

Here is another example of gaelic poetry from Mara:

Is mise Dùn Naomhaig,             I am called Dunyvaig,

Tha mi mòr,                           I am big

Tha mi casteal,                       I am a castle,

Tha mi fuar,                            I am cold,

Tha i dorcha,                          It is dark,

Tha mi cunnartach,                  I am dangerous,

Tha mi dubh agus donn.             I am black and brown.




Dùn Naomhaig Caisteal

We have been using our Castle art to create Gaelic Poetry using the vocabulary we have been learning.  Our poems were written as if we were the castle; how we felt, what we looked like.  We wrote the poems out and then used Chatterpix to record our poetry.  Here is Caitidh’s poem:

Is mise Dùn Naomhaig,             I am called Dunyvaig,

Tha mi làidir, tha mi stoirm,      I am strong, I am stormy,

Tha mi dubh agus donn,            I am black and brown,

Tha mi seachd ceud bliadhna,    I am seven hundred years old,

Tha mi fuar agus fliuch,             I am cold and wet,

Tha mi brònach, tha mi garbh,    I am sad, I am wild,

Tha mi mòr, tha mi fada,           I am big, I am long,

Tha mi dorcha.                         I am dark.



As part of our Dunyvaig topic we have been learning about what castles looked like at that time and some of their key features.  We looked at lots of examples of castles and used what we knew to create our own impressions of Dunyvaig Castle using pen and pencil and oil pastels.  You can see some of the results below.




Birlinn Ghoraidh Chróbhain Animation

We have been learning the gaelic song Birlinn Ghoraidh Chróbhain as part of our Dunyvaig learning.  Godred Croven was one of the earliest settlers on Islay and probably used Dunyvaig as a base.

When the mighty Norwegian King Harold Hardrada was killed in battle in 1066, his Chief of Staff was Goraidh Crobhan (Godred of the white hand), who escaped and made his way to the Island of Islay, where his reputation as a clever and fearless warrior had gone before him. Men flocked to join him, and he was victorious in his battle with Fingal, King of Man and the Isles. He also fought successfully against Malcolm Canmore.  In our animation you can see him travelling a Birlinn to Islay from the Isle of Man.

Ghoraidh Chróbhain is best known on Islay in a legend where he cleverly kills a dragon that was eating people and cattle, so we decided to have him slay a sea monster in our video, xan you spot it?   He died in 1095 as a result of the plague that was sweeping the area and is said to be buried on Islay.

We used stop motion animation to film the story of the song, and also recorded us singing along.  We hope you enjoy the animation!

Here are the words:

Hóbhan na hóbhan hó, hi horó na hùbhan,
Hóbhan na hóbhan hó, Air Birlinn Ghoraidh Chrobhain

Fichead sonn air cùl nan ràmh,
Fichead buille lùghmhor,
Siùbhlaidh ì mar eun a’ snàmh,
Is sìoban thonn ‘ga sgiùrsadh.

Suas i sheòid air bàrr nan tonn !
Sìos gu ìochdar sùigh i !
Suas an ceòl is togaibh fonn,
Tha Mac an Righ ‘ga stiuireadh !

Dh’ fhàg sinn Manainn mòr nan tòrr,
Eireann a’ tighinn dlùth dhuinn,
Air Ile-an-Fheòir tha sinn an tòir
Ged dh’ èireas tonnan dùbh-ghorm.


Hóvan, na hóvan ho,
Hee horó, na hóvan,
Hóvan, na hóvan ho
The barge of Gorrie Cróvan

Behind the oars, a score so brave,
A lusty score to row her,
She sails away like bird on wave,
While foaming seas lash o’er her.

Up she goes on ocean wave !
Down the surge she wails O,
Sing away; the chorus, raise,
A royal prince; he sails her !

The towers of Man we leave away,
Old Erin’s hills we hail O,
On Islay’s shore her course we lay
Though billows roar and rave O.”

Famous People from the Time of Finlaggan

In class we have been researching famous people from the time of Dunyvaig and Finalggan, from Godred Croven to John the II of Islay.  We have learned what life was like at the time and the family tree surrounding the lord of the Isles.  We created posters of the famous figures; below you can see our poster for Godred Croven and Somerled, two of the earliest characters associated with Islay.

Islay Seal





P67 at Port Ellen have been recreating a letter from the time of Dunyvaig castle. They had to imagine a letter that might have been written and had a seal attached.  This is because there was a seal from 1593 discovered at this years dig at the castle; seals were used with wax to seal letters to make them official.  We have been using a seal in class to add to our letters, which we have aged using cold tea.  We melted wax in a spoon over a candle and then used a tree of life seal to imprint in the wax.  We think they look very authentic!