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The folk of Moray often paid superficial respect for their 'superiors' while retaining a healthy envy and hatred.  Their best known target was Sir Robert Gordon, 3rd Baronet of Gordonstoun, (1647-1704), known as the Wizard or Warlock of Gordonstoun.

Robert was packed off to Padua University in Italy to complete his education.  He was so conscientious that he swore to 'give himself away' to his studies.  Word spread that he had sold his soul.

He returned to Gordonstoun and confirmed the rumour by building an Italian-style Round Square house, an obvious attempt to confuse the devil!

Eventually, Sir Robert worked out that the Devil would come for his soul on a particular date, at midnight.  He arranged for the local priest to sit with him, a Holy ally!

The devil arrived.  The priest was terrified, but managed to order, Run!' Sir Robert fled the room, mounted his horse, and galloped off to Birnie Kirk, the nearest consecrated ground, where he would be safe.

As he galloped, he heard the howls of the hounds of hell and heavy hoof-falls getting ever nearer.  Finally, one of the hounds sank its teeth into his horse's leg.  The horse faltered, Sir Robert was thrown over a wall, and was dead, his neck broken.  But the wall was that of the Kirk, and he lay on consecrated ground, his soul safe.

Author: Brian Cartwright


The Wizard of Gordonstoun

Moray Witches

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