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Foula, Shetland

Historical Description

FOULA, an island, in the parish of Walls and Sandness, county of Shetland; containing 215 inhabitants. This island lies almost twenty miles distant from any land, and is the most western of the Shetlands. It is about three miles in length, and one and a half in breadth, with bold and steep shores, and formed chiefly of three hills of a nearly conical shape. There is very little level ground; and the isle has only one landing-place. Ham, which is on the east side, and even this cannot be approached in bad weather: the island is resorted to as a fishing-station, and it affords excellent pasturage for sheep. Dense columns of birds of various kinds hover round it, literally darkening the air at particular seasons; the surface of the hills swarms with plover, crows, and curlews, and the cormorants occupy the lower portions of the cliff's. The rock scenery in this island is supposed to be the grandest in the country. The minister of Walls makes an annual visit to the isle, remaining usually two Sundays; at other times the schoolmaster oHiciates in the church as a kind of pastor.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, 1851 by Samuel Lewis