Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Oh dear. This is just too tempting to pass up.

For a while now, I've been playing about with the idea of including a subplot dealing with the foundation of the kingdom of Dál Riata, as well as the emergence of the Pictish "nation", in my books. After all, the surviving records are dubious, the genealogies heavily manipulated. What's one more piece of fiction thrown in there?

The plotbunnies suggested that in my universe the first kings of Dál Riata could be descended from my Marcus and Gairea, whose stories are centred around Argyll in The Ancestor Crown. After all, what on earth is that boar doing carved on the rock at Dunadd when the totem of the Iron Age Argyll-folk seems, etymologically, to have been the horse?

It just so happens that my Marcus is a soldier of the Twentieth Legion Valeria Victrix, whose emblem was a boar.

Then, while I was checking over my OS map of mid-Argyll for Iron Age settlements, I came across the most interesting little place name on the isle of Seil, just off the coast of Argyll. Rubha mhic Mharcuis: "Headland of the son of Mharcuis". Mharcuis is a Gaelic rendering of - you guessed it - Marcus. (It's also the Gaelic for "marquis", but with the mhic in there I think here it probably means "son of Mark").

I'm sure there's a perfectly reasonable, non-Roman-related origin to the name. Nevertheless, it gave me a slight chill.

Something else to play with, I think. :)


Crystal said...

Oh use use them both! At least write it seperately at first, see how you can shape and shift things and then if you just love it, tie it in!!! I have COMPLETE faith in you;o) Have a wonderful evening!

Kirsten Campbell said...

Lol, thanks! That's a good idea. :)

Actually, the more I think about it, the more I like it. I'm going to do a bit more reading into the timelines and such of the origin stories, and see what I can tweak.

But that's tomorrow's work. It's bedtime for me.

Adrian said...

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Kirsten Campbell said...

Hello, Adrian, and welcome. :) No, I don't mind. Thanks for stopping by.

Gabriele C. said...

Hm, could be my Marcus. You know, the father of M. Horatius Aquila from Eagle of the Sea who spent some time with the Cerones. *grin*

Kirsten Campbell said...

Lol. Could be.

(browses maps for more potentially exploitable placenames)