T-Thomas the Rhymer

Thomas Learmouth was born in the early thirteenth century in Ercildourne (now Earlston). He was considered a prophet. His prophecies were stated in the form of poetry.

One of his prophecies was the death of Alexander III of Scotland in 1286. “On the morrow, afore noon, shall blow the greatest wind that ever was heard before in Scotland.” This was written the day before the death of Alexander from a fall off of his horse.

Another prophecy attributed to him was the fall of Ercildourne. “As long as the Thorn Tree stands, Ercildourne shall keep its lands.” The Thorn Tree fell and all the merchants went bankrupt and the land was forfeited.

Thomas is also credited with writing Sir Tristrem, a version of Tam Lin in which a mortal (Thomas) is captivated by the Queen of Elfland and spends seven years in her company. He returns to the mortal world for a number of years and then returns to Fairyland from which he has not returned.

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