Talk:Fairy Flag

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Good article Fairy Flag has been listed as one of the Philosophy and religion good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
March 25, 2010 Good article nominee Listed
Did You Know A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on August 25, 2009.

Bannatyne manuscript[edit]

Was the Bannatyne manuscript that is referenced to within the article ever published? I think that if it was viewable on-line somewhere it could really add to the article. It was supposedly written by William MacLeod Bannatyne in the 1830s. Googling the term really only turns up the 1500s 'Bannatyne manuscript' written by George Bannatyne; and 19th century versions of it are viewable on GoogleBooks. I suspect the section "Traditional account from a manuscript dating to c.1800" deals with the 1830s Bannatyne manuscript, but unfortunately F.T. MacLeod didn't say that specifically in his article—he only said that that manuscript was quoting was written in about 1800.--Celtus (talk) 08:39, 18 August 2009 (UTC)

I don't think the Bannatyne manuscript has been published. Historian William Matheson, writing in 1979, thanked another historian for letting him see a transcription of it [1]. So I doubt it was then out in the open anywhere, at least then anyways. The manuscript is quoted in R.C. MacLeod's book and it very different than the quotation that F.T. MacLeod gave in his paper. Also, F.T. MacLeod stated that the manuscript he quoted dates from 'about 1800', not quite the date of the Bannatyne manuscript (1830s). So I think they have to be different accounts. It would be cool to see online though.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:00, 21 January 2010 (UTC)
I just noticed that the writer of the Bannatyne manuscript states that when the last flag bearer was buried, his grandfather witnessed the ceremony. The writer of the other manuscript states that the last funeral took place in his father's time.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 08:04, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

Orphaned references in Fairy Flag[edit]

I check pages listed in Category:Pages with incorrect ref formatting to try to fix reference errors. One of the things I do is look for content for orphaned references in wikilinked articles. I have found content for some of Fairy Flag's orphans, the problem is that I found more than one version. I can't determine which (if any) is correct for this article, so I am asking for a sentient editor to look it over and copy the correct ref content into this article.

Reference named "morrison":

I apologize if any of the above are effectively identical; I am just a simple computer program, so I can't determine whether minor differences are significant or not. AnomieBOT 10:31, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

I think that now the Morrison ref (1947) should be good to go.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 10:42, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Fairy Flag/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: –– Jezhotwells (talk) 20:09, 20 March 2010 (UTC)

Checking against GA criteria[edit]

GA review (see here for criteria)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose): b (MoS):
    In the 19th century, the writer Rev. Norman Macleod (1783–1862)[note 1] recalled seeing the Fairy Flag during his childhood in about 1799 (see relevant section below). use a wikilink to that section. the article writer may know which is the "relevant section", but the reader will not.  Done
    Fixed.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:56, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    Many clumsy turns of phrase throughout, e.g.:
    The Fairy Flag has been examined numerous times in the last two centuries and since this time its condition has somewhat deteriorated. ?? Poor sentence construction  Done
    Fixed, I think. I changed it to: "It has been examined numerous times in the last two centuries; during this time its condition has somewhat deteriorated".--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 09:09, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    Pennant then declared that the flag was unfurled a third time in an effort to save his own life, but that the flag was then too tattered, and Titania did not seem to think his life worth fending for! - this reads as if the flag was unfurled to save Pennant's life - is that really what is meant?  Done
    Yep, that's what he said. It's a good thing you mentioned this part. I re-checked the ref, and I think the article has this part messed up a bit. The Pennant book is online, so you can see the passage yourself. Here's the quotation "The flag has been produced thrice. The first time in an unequal engagement against Clan-Ronald, to whose fight the Macleods were multiplied ten-fold. The second preserved the heir of the family, being then produced to save the longings of the lady: and the third time, to save my own; but it was to tattered, that Titania did not seem to think it worth sending for". The book uses the 1700s form of the letter "s" which looks a lot like "f". So when the article says "fending for", that should actually be "sending for". So, I think that Pennant meant that the flag saved his life on the third (and last) instance of its magic, but Titania did not bother taking the flag back, since it was too tattered. I've just changed the meaning of that part of the article, so now it says that she didn't want the flag back—not that she didn't think Pennant's life was worth "fending for".--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:39, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    Only the eldest male living of this single family could ever unfurl the flag. - surely the eldest living male ?  Done
    Fixed.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:49, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    Much of the material in Traditional account from a manuscript dating to c.1800 is repeated in Bannatyne manuscript' - are these the same manuscripts? The repetition is unnecessary and looks like padding.  Done
    Seems to me that they are different. The writer of one says the last flagbearer died in his father's lifetime, the other says he died in his grandfathers lifetime. The quotations that RC.MacLeod and F.T.MacLeod give don't seem to match up either. Anyway I agree about the repetition, I combined the sections, and made some subsections within.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:55, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    N. Macleod stated that at about the same time, MacLeod's Maidens were sold to Campbell of Ensay; and he also declared to have personally seen a fox, which belonged to a Maclean, to have lived in the west turret of the castle with its cubs.  Done
    Fixed.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 08:43, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    the chiefly family
    How would you reword this? It's used in the article twice, to mean the chief's immediate family, as opposed to the 'whole Clan MacLeod' which can also be considered his 'family'.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 08:43, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    Not that important, perhaps the clan chief's family?
    In the early 20th century, R.C. MacLeod considered that this prophecy seemed to have been fulfilled.  Done
    Fixed.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 08:45, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    R.C., better to use R.C. Macleod  Done
    Fixed.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 11:59, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    This lullaby-tradition runs that on an autumn night a beautiful fairy visited Dunvegan Castle.  Done
    Fixed, I think. I changed the tense in these sections. So when the article goes into what the traditions state they are in the present tense; and the parts which state what so-n-so thinks, is in the past tense. I hope it makes it clear where the fantasy ends, and opinion begins.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 08:36, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    Before parting she gave him a box of scented wood, which she told him held several smaller boxes which exactly fitted the one on the outside. - are we talking about one box inside another, or a collection of boxes which exactly fitted the outer container - please clarify.  Done
    I think they are boxes which fit inside of one another, like one of those Russian/Ukranian dolls. I changed the article to make that more clear. Here's the quote: "In this, she told him, were several smaller boxes, each of which exactly fitted the one outside it. In the inmost box was a magic banner". Since it says "innermost", I think they must all fit inside each other like the dolls.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 09:04, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
    The Bannatyne manuscript states that the flag was also unfurled during the Battle of Glendale, which was traditionally fought in about 1490. - better to say something like which, according to tradition, was fought around the year 1490.  Done
    I changed the wording so it's clear that the date if from the manusript. The battle in the manusript takes place in 'about 1490'; the real battle is actually considered to have been fought sometime after 1513.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 12:07, 21 March 2010 (UTC)
    Overall, poorly written and needs organising in a clearer manner. The lead does not fully summarise the article., please read WP:MOS and WP:LEAD. The last stray sentence of the lead should be incorporated into an earlier paragraph. Consider enlisting the help of a copy-editor to improve the prose. The Wikipedia:Guild of copyeditors may be able to help.  Done lead fine
    I worked on the lead. How is it now? I made a request at the guild like you suggested, there's a huge backlog there though.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 09:07, 22 March 2010 (UTC)
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (references): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
    All online references check out, I assume good faith for off-line sources.
    All references seem to be reliable and thee is no evidence of original research or plagiarism.
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
    There is a certain amount of repetition as noted above
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. It is stable.
    No edit wars, etc.:
  6. It is illustrated by images, where possible and appropriate.
    a (images are tagged and non-free images have fair use rationales): b (appropriate use with suitable captions):
  7. Overall:
    OK, on hold for seven days for the above issues to be addressed. –– Jezhotwells (talk) 21:08, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
    I think that sufficient improvements have been made for this article to be listed as a good artcile. Keep it on the copy editor's list as improvements to the prose could still be made, but the article is much clearer now. Aftyer you have had copy-eiting help, you could consider a WP:Peer review, if you wish to improv ethe artcile. Pass as GA. –– Jezhotwells (talk) 02:37, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
    Ok, I'll do that. Thanks.--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 07:43, 25 March 2010 (UTC)

Copy edit - March 2010[edit]

Following a request at the Guild of Copy Editors, I am doing a copy edit of this article. Here are some small issues that I have:

  • The flag is made of silk, is yellow or brown in colour, and measures about 18 inches (46 cm) either way. - What does either way mean? Is it a square flag? - OK, I have now read the part below about it being square. If that is correct, I would substitute "either way" with "squared".
  • The silk of the flag has been stated to have originated in the Far East, leading some to believe that the flag may have been an important relic of some sort. - Silk did come from the Far East - nothing unusual here. So, why would it be a relic? Perhaps more explanation here would be useful.
  • Hmm, this part refers to Wace's statement in the first paragraph: It was his opinion that the flag, in its original state, would have been quite precious, possibly a relic like the shirt of a saint. Pretty flimsy by itself; I'm not sure what would have led him to think that it could have been relic of a saint, other than just pure imagination. Maybe the relic bit doesn't need to appear in the lead, since it is just a sentence in the whole article?--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 10:36, 28 March 2010 (UTC)
That's OK, it just needs further explanation/expansion. I will add a bit more to that sentence to explain why it might be considered a relic.-- S Masters (talk) 16:32, 28 March 2010 (UTC)

I have done up to and including "Other episodes", but I have to stop now. I will continue another time. I will also need to go through from the beginning as there are issues with the present and past tense used throughout. If another editor wants to pick up where I left off, do proceed but please record your progress here. Thanks. -- S Masters (talk) 08:38, 28 March 2010 (UTC)

I have now completed the copy edit. There are no other outstanding issues on my end. Let me know on my talk page if any other help is required. Cheers. -- S Masters (talk) 13:38, 29 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks!--Brianann MacAmhlaidh (talk) 04:54, 30 March 2010 (UTC)


The idea that the Fairy Flag was once in the possession of Harald Hadrada is very interesting and I'd love to see it fleshed out, but a single blogpost by a lawyer and businessman (who happens to be a member of the family that claims descent from the same king) may not be enough of a source to justify inclusion here. Can we find something a little more reliable to cite? Ibadibam (talk) 21:17, 28 April 2016 (UTC)

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