Dull, Perth and Kinross
The church at Dull
|Dull shown within Perth and Kinross|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
Dull is a village in the county of Perth and Kinross in Scotland. Dull is paired with Boring, Oregon, USA creating the Pair for the Ages. Bland, New South Wales in Australia is a member of the League of Extraordinary Communities which was established by the Boring Community Planning Organization and the Dull and Weem Community Council in 2013.
Toponymy and history
The place-name may mean 'meadow' in Gaelic. However, Duncan Campbell relates a traditional tale in "The Lairds of Glenlyon" (1886) which connects the Gaelic word 'dul' (snare) with the withies on the hearse of St Adomnán snapping, thus deciding his burial-place and the founding of Dull. The parish church, unused since the 1970s, is on the site of an early Christian monastery founded by St Adomnán (Scottish Gaelic: N. Eònan), Abbot of Iona (died 704). Several early Christian cross-slabs dating to the 7th or 8th century have been discovered in and around the parish graveyard. A slab carved with stylised warriors and horsemen in the Pictish style, uncovered during grave-digging in the 19th century, is displayed in the Museum of Scotland, and may have formed part of a wall-relief, or one side of a box-shrine. A massive font of rough workmanship, preserved by the church door, is also a probable relic from the early monastic site.
The surrounding district was known as the Appin of Dull, the name 'Appin' deriving from Old Irish apdaine, 'abbacy', referring to the former monastic estate. Compare Appin in Argyll, the 'abbey lands' in that case being those of the major early Christian monastery of Lismore. Four undecorated crosses, of which three survive, one at Dull itself, and two in the nearby old church at Weem, once stood around the monastic precinct, defining an area of sanctuary.
In decline for much of the 20th century, with its church and school both going out of use, the small village has seen the construction of several new houses, and the restoration of older buildings, in recent years.
Paired towns (Twin Towns)
Dull is twinned with:
- Boring, Oregon, USA (since 2012)
Dull and Boring created the League of Extraordinary Communities in 2013 and made
Elizabeth Leighton of Aberfeldy, Scotland, proposed the pairing with Boring, Oregon, USA while passing through Boring, Oregon (an unincorporated town on a highway from Portland, Oregon, to Mount Hood) on a cycling holiday. In June 2012, the US town of Boring, Oregon, accepted the proposal of Dull to "pair" their municipalities, in an effort to promote tourism in both places as a play on their names. The Boring Community Planning Organization (CPO) issued commemorative "Boring & Dull: a pair for the ages" T-shirts and mugs, raffling off a trip to Dull, Scotland. The Boring CPO will not attempt to get the pairing recognised by the US-based Sister Cities International.
Bland Shire, West Wyalong—a farm community and former gold prospecting site in the Riverina region of New South Wales, Australia—joined the initiative in 2013, creating not a "twinned town" relationship but a "League of Extraordinary Communities" to group Dull, Boring, and Bland as a means of encouraging travel, promoting all three communities.
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