The Thirteen Sycamores on a Mystic Mound.
In a Lothian location we ask about a small isolate hill and assemblage of trees. When someone mentioned the Da Vinci Code.
Sycamores trees must have had a mystical and religious portrayal as they are mentioned in the Bible's 1st Chronicles 'and the sycamore trees that were in the lowland'�
The chronicle tells of David and Solomon as founders of the Temple and its musical and priestly charges.
The small hill is called Mount Lothian as King Lot is said to have made it a place of residence. The significance of the number thirteen may be that Christ was crucified on a thirteenth day and thirteenth centuries later St Mary's Chapel was built by Cistercian monks to mark the outer circle of the Templar Knights prefecture. In this chapel on a tranquil sycamore coppice William Wallace was knighted only to be betrayed and murdered in 1305.
During the Battle of Roslin in 1303 some 8,000 Scots outmatched an English army of 30,000. Wallace had rejected the command of the army which fell to Cromyn. Cistercian monks lent a hand by setting up a wooden cross that shone brightly in the morning sun rising over the Pentland hills. The light struck a Scots army as a heaven sent Saltire and gave them heart.
After finding the Chapel on a cool windy Scots morning that inevitable brought sweeping rain we trudged across a field of boggy ground.
Standing by a pile of old stones covered in a wet moss it was possible to feel a faint mystical connection with a brave Scots past. Thirteen new sycamores canted in the wind reminded us of Templar Knights, Cistercian Monks and a kneeling William Wallace in a Chapel resting on an elfin knoll.
As we walked away the rains temporary halted and a soft sun lit up the thirteen sycamores as if the Cistercian Monk sought to show a sign of long-ago.
PS. The Chapel seems to be pointing East. To the North is Kings Seat Hill on the edge of the Lothian Coal fields.
Acknowledgements to local people and www.gems.scot.info