"ST. KILDA, (or St. Hirta) one of the islands of the Western Isles of Scotland, being the most westerly of the group. It lies in 57° 50' N. lat., and 7° 40' W. long. It is situated about 29 miles from the mainland, and 37 miles S.W. of the Flannan Isles. It belongs to the parish of Harris, and county of Inverness. Its size is about 3 miles long by 2 broad, and it has anchorage in 4 to 7 fathoms on the N.E. side. The only accessible landing-point is on the S.E. side, the remainder of the coast being surrounded by precipitous cliffs. The surface of the island is rocky, and has four prominent hills, the highest of which is 1,380 feet above sea-level. Some rocky islets lie off the coast, the principal of which are Soa and Borera. The inhabitants occupy a small cluster of huts on the S.E. side, and are maintained by their scanty crops and by snaring the sea-fowl which swarm on the rocks. Feathers, sheep, and butter are paid as rent. Gaelic is the prevailing language. There is a church, but no minister, or medical man. The Christian Knowledge Society have a school and missionary station. A resident baron bailie exercises jurisdiction over this little world. "
Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003