Thursday, 23 January 2014

Why do Scottish People Love Monkeys?

Personally, I was born with a monkey track mind. I wouldn't say I was obsessed but when I eventually got around to writing something I titled it Million Dollar Monkey. I'd like to know why and in my extensive research I've uncovered a few things about Scotland and monkeys that may shed some light on the matter ... 

Monkeys used blue face paint years before Braveheart
Why do Scottish people love monkeys? It has been unclear where this tartan monkey-love comes from but researchers now believe the affection runs deeper than was previously realised. Humans are known to share 99.4% DNA with chimpanzees.The average in Scotland has now been confirmed to be 99.8%, with some recorded cases reaching as high as 110%. This anomaly may be linked to Scotland's historic links to the monkey kingdom. There is some evidence that Scotland itself was originally colonised by a fierce Monkey-people known as the Doolicks. The Doolicks were thought to have been in control of large areas of the Scottish highlands and there are written histories that describe them as 'monstrous forest dwelling creatures that could outrun a horse on their four fuzzy limbs'. Doolick artefacts are rare, with the only known examples being housed in sealed glass cases in the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh. The mysterious Doolick artwork appears to depict two circular objects, one small, one larger, with a faint line between them together with what appears to be arrowheads pointing in both directions. The meaning of the artwork has puzzled scientists with theories ranging from a depiction of a simple ball game to an early design for Simian space travel. There is very little other evidence of the Doolicks who suddenly disappeared from all written records as suddenly as they appeared. It's as if they just vanished.

 Monkeys were reintroduced to Scotland in the 1700's when Bonnie Prince Charlie brought a family of companion monkeys named 'Minions' with him on his quest to re-claim the throne of Scotland. The Minions were said to have been 'the gayest of companions' who could 'raise the Prince's dampened spirits even on the bleakest of Scottish mornings' with their 'furtive dances and mischievous countenances'. Paintings depict them dressed in similar garb to the Prince, who, through generations of interbreeding within the European royal families had been born small in stature but with most of his body covered in a thick dark hair. The Prince was known to shave several times a day in an attempt to hide his hideous hereditary and its believed that the confusion surrounding the Battle of Culloden wasn't helped by the Prince insisting that the settlements around Cawdor be 'scoured for an oval looking-glass' on the morning of the battle when he accidently smashed his own one while attempting the Gay-Gordons dance in a confined area with the Minions and some unwilling members of the McLachlan Clan. The aftermath of the battle saw the Minions successfully deployed as body-doubles for the Prince, easily outwitting their Hanoverian pursuers who were well known to be all mouth and no kilts allowed. Several of the Minions went on to establish successful monkey communities around the western fringes of the Scottish Highlands - a climate that they found most agreeable. Remnants of these communities still exist today and the recent upsurge in interest in genealogy has uncovered some unexpected relatives in some family trees.

"I'd no idea I was related to a Minion" said Kyle MacLachlan, an American actor visiting near Poolewe while researching his Scottish roots. "It sure explains a few things though. I love nothing more than sheltering in a dark thicket and picking beasties off my dogs. I'm very proud of my Scottish lineage and it’s true that I do come from an unusually hairy family."

Armed with the knowledge of their proud monkey heritage Scots can continue to venture out into the world with renewed hope for the future of man and monkey-kind ...

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