Thomas Learmonth o Erceldoune


Thomas Learmonth o Erceldoune (now Earlston) (1220 – 1298) was granted the gift of prophecy after a dalliance with the Queen of Elfland. He was afterwards known as Thomas the Rhymer and is reputed to have been a friend and counsellor of Alexander III.

Thomas was held in popular esteem for centuries after his death.  In Scotland, his reputation was higher than that of all other prophets including Merlin, whom the 16th Century pamphleteer of The Complaynt of Scotland denounced for his prophecy of unity under one king which English monarchs used as justification for their claims of sovereignty over Scotland.

Elizabeth Burton explores the romance and the background to Thomas’ life in The Life and Times of Thomas of Ercildune.

3 thoughts on “Thomas Learmonth o Erceldoune”

  1. Thanks for your post – I really enjoyed reading it and it chimes with so much of the dialogue going on in Dundee post City of Culture bid. If you’re in Dundee it would be great to talk more about how we might be able to act on these ideas here.


    • Clive,

      ‘Good to hear from you and thanks very much for your comments.

      ‘Very happy to meet. As luck would have it, I was in Dundee only on Tuesday! My diary is pretty full for the the rest of March, but I could probably manage a trip to Dundee during April. Alternatively, equally happy to meet up in Edinburgh if you are going to be here sometime.

  2. Clive Gillman said:

    Hi Graeme,

    I’m in Edinburgh probably on Mon 17th and Tues 18th March if those work with you ?


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