Ley Lines are very simply, alignments of significant landmarks that can be connected with a straight line across the landscape. Earth Energy is lines or veins of telluric energy that flow through the earth and generally wrap around the straight staff of the ley line like a caduesus. The lines of Earth Energy can be detected by the use of dowsing rods.
The lines are present in all parts of the globe but have been studied mostly in the British Isles. The lines appear to be both positive and negatively charged, two lines will twine around each other and cross at intervals creating a node of combined energy. Interestingly enough there are many megalithic monuments situated on or very near to these nodes. This would sugest that at some point in our history there were people who were very aware of these energy lines and used them to harmonize and energize their lives. The most famous of these lines is the one that I featured in Laurel's Miracle, the St. Michael Line whose female twin line is the Mary Line. The Michael Line tends to run to high hills and rocks where the Mary Line meanders more and homes in on springs and wells, hence the vast number of sacred wells that still exist in Cornwall today. The lines run from Boscawen near Lands End across southern England to Avebury and beyond. Hamish Miller, the renowned dowser and Paul Broadhurst have traced the journey of first the Michael LIne and then the Mary Line across the country side. The lines run in part along the old Ickneild Way that early people followed on their journey to Avebury and other sacred sites to celebrate the solstices and changing seasons that ruled the old agrarian way of life. You can find our more on this fascinating subject in The Sun and The Serpent written by Hamish Miller and Paul Broadhurst (Penwith Press) which chronicles their journey of discovery along the Michael and Mary Lines.
There have been sightings of a stange water beast like the Loch Ness Monster ony in a sea going version as Nessie is a fresh water beast, along the south west coast of Cornwall for many years. The creature has proved elusive but some brave souls have come forward and given descriptions of their experience. Fishermen, tourists and locals are all members of the elite group of people who claim to have seen the Morgawr. In some versions it is green and in some brown, with a long neck and stubby flippers and quite large. I took the bare bones of these accounts and created the Morgawr of Laurel's Miracle. It provided a fun and unexpected way for Vear Du to arrive at the Cheesewring to meet Laurel and making him able to fly was just for fun and well, because I could!
Gwin Scawen is old Cornish for White Eldertree. He is a Cornish Piskie, who is a relative of the Scottish Brownie and the Irish Leprechaun. They are also related to the "Knockers" who are small man like creatures who live in the tin mines of Cornwall and who can be benevolent or malicious, depending on their relationship with the miner. Tin miners used to leave an offering of food for them. Most often a peice of the Cornish Pasty they had for lunch.
Gwin Scawen, in Laurel's Miracle and A Step Sideways (where he makes a cameo appearance) is a mischevious but benevolent Piskie. He is a particular friend of Aisling's and therefore is protective of anyone who he percieves that falls under Aisling's protection. He is a small brown, twig like man with a small wrinkled face and twinkling black eyes.
Vear Du is old Cornish for Great Black. Vear Du is a magical creature called a Selkie. That is a creature who can shape shift from the shape of a human man to a seal. There are also female versions. Selkies are most common in Scotland, but I have chosen to have Vear Du migrate to the southwest Cornish coast. There are many legends of Selkies marrying humans and spending their time between their homes under the waves and their home on the land. Legends also tell of tales of how you can bind a Selkie to you if you find their pelt that they hide by the shore while they are on land. If you can locate the pelt and keep it hidden, the Selkie is unable to shape shift back to their seal shape and must remain land bound. However, should the Selkie find their pelt they will immediately return to the home in the sea. Selkies are said to live in huge crystal like cities on the floor of the ocean and that they can take humans thier for brief visits. There are many tales of children born to Selkie mothers in human form or sired by Selkie fathers in human form. Various spellings include: Silkies, Sulchies, Silkys.
Stone Circles and Megaliths
The Men An Tol
The Men An Tol is holed stone on the Cornish moors. It consists of two uprights stones and a holed stone between them.
Laurel and her friends visit LanyonQuoit in their adventures. A quoit is huge block of stone supported by large stone "legs". They resemble tables in many cases, King Arthur is reputed to have used one as a dinner table the night before he received his death wound.There are many theories about what they were used for by ancient men,ritual sites, markers of seasonal positions of the sun and moon, and various other conjectures. They are only referred to as quoits in Cornwall, in other parts of the world they are dolmens.Cornwall has more than its share of quoits and stone monuments, Trevethy Quoit, the Stone Maidens Circle, The Men Scryfa, whose name means Stone with Writing to name a few.
The Hidden Meanings of the Names
The Celtic Tree Ogham Alphabet provided most of the inspiration for the names of the heroes in Laurel's Miracle.
Laurel's last name is Rowan- The second letter in the Ogham alphabet, it is protection against enchantment and control of the senses.
Laurel's first name is inspired by a black pony I owned a long time ago whose name was Laura's Miracle, because it was a miracle she lived after being orphaned at birth.
Coll's name means Hazel (which I used as his last name) It represents intuition and getting straight to the source.
Nuin is Ashling's last name, it represents the inner and outer worlds linked and is the Celtic name for the Ash tree.
Gort's name is inspired by the Ivy which is it's name in the Ogham alphabet. It represents search for self and the spiral of the self.
Brother Ioho is named after the Yew tree, which is associated with rebirth and everlasting life.
Laurel's mother's name is Anna Dara Rowan. Anna is associated with the Great Earth Goddess, Anu or Aine. Dara is the feminine for the oak tree, which represents strength, a doorway to the mysteries and protection-in short all the things a mother is- Rowan is the same as Laurel above.
Lamorna- the Fell Pony is inspired by my Laura and is named after Lamorna Cove in Cornwall
Arthur is named after King Arthur, Ebony is named after a mare I used to know and Gareth was one of King Arthur's knights.
Morgen and Vivienne are names associated with the Lady of the Lake at Glastonbury in the Arthurian legends, they are Sarie's two work horses.