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Mary Macpherson - (1821-1898) - Skye Poet

Mairi Mhor nan Oran, Main nic-a-Phearsain, Mary Macpherson, was born on Skye and achieved her nickname, Big Mary of the Songs through her prodigious height and weight and by her larger-than-life personality. Her popularity in Skye, and throughout the Highlands, was enhanced by her identification with the land reform movement and she was a plain-speaking critic of the earlier clearances. Many of her songs deal directly with the actions of the land reformers and are deliberate incitements, but she also wrote with great feeling about the island and the people of Skye. A good deal of her life was spent in Inverness and Glasgow. During her lifetime (and after her death) she enjoyed an almost legendary reputation for her fierce espousal of the crofters' cause in their struggle against the uncaring landowners. Her political poems also offer an unusual picture of the history and sociology of the people of her period.

Work; Mairi nic-a-Phearsain, Dain agus drain Ghaidhlig (1891).

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