The summer holidays mean that the people of England migrate to the SouthWest - now my grandparents use to live in Penzance, overlooking the beautiful St. Michaels Mount and Mount's Bay and we used to travel there at least once a year. As we used to travel around the Bay she told us the stories of Cormoran, the Giant of St. Michaels Mount:
The tradition is that St. Michaels Mount Mount was formerly called in old Cornish, Careg-luz en kuz*, and that it rose from the midst of an extensive
forest. Fossilised traces of this forest are supposed to be visible at low tide. Now Cormoran and his wife Cormelian lived in the
forest, that once covered Mount's Bay from Penzance to Marazion. Cormoran wanted to build himself a stronghold of white granite and forced
his wife to help by carrying the great boulders in her apron. One day, Cormelian, seeing her husband asleep decided it would be much easier to
fetch greenstone instead, as it was much closer to hand. Unfortunately, Cormoran awoke as she was halfway there and seeing her with
greenstone flew into a rage, he gave her such a kick that broke her apron strings and the greenstone fell. The forest is now submerged but
If you look on the causeway to St. Michaels Mount you can see that piece of greenstone still.
If you travel up to Trencrom Hill you will see not only the best views in West Cornwall but also that it's littered with huge boulders.
This was the result of a game that Cormoran and Trecrobben, the giant of Trencrom Hill, used to play of hurling rocks at each other to
catch, although some say they were playing "bob-buttons" - "The Mount was the 'bob', on which flat masses of granite were placed to
serve as buttons, and Trecrobben Hill was the 'mit', or the spot from which the throw was made. Sometimes they switched such as the
Mount was the mit and the Hill the button."
Cormoran and the giant Trecrobben were very friendly. They had only one cobbling-hammer between them, which they would throw from one to the other, as either required it. One day the giant on the Mount wanted the hammer in a great hurry, so he shouted,
"Holloa, up there! Trecrobben, throw us down the hammer, woost a'?"
"To be sure," sings out Trecrobben; "here! look out, and catch 'm."
Now, the giant's wife, alwyas ran ran out of her cave to see Trecrobben throw the hammer. She had no hat on and was very nearsighted; coming out of the dark cave into the light, she was blinded. Consequently, she did not see the hammer coming through the air, and received it between her eyes. The force with which it was flung was so great that the massive bone of the forehead of the giantess was crushed, and she fell dead at Cormoran's feet. You may be sure there was a great to-do with the two giants. They sat wailing over the dead body, and with their sighs produced a tempest. All of this was unavailing to restore the old lady, and all they could do was bury her. So they buried her under Chapel Rock.
Cormoran was eventually killed by Jack the Giant Killer but that, as my mother used to say, is a story for another day....
*The White Rock in the Forest
Most dear is fire to the sons of men,
most sweet the sight of the sun;
good is health if one can but keep it,
and to live a life without shame. (Havamal 68)http://gewessiman.blogspot.co.uk