Since I’ve been asked this question a couple of times, I thought it a good idea to explain what a ‘lonnen’ is, and what it’s doing in the title of my blog.
Simply put, the word ‘lonnen’ is contemporary local dialect for ‘lane’. Though you will rarely hear this word actually spoken, it is still a feature in local place names around the north-east.
“So, traveller! Welcome to Rothbury. Thinking of crossing the treacherous Simonside hills? I’d advise you not to try it in the dark. As any shepherd worth his wool would tell you, and I am he, the area is full of sharp crags and ravines in which one false step could mean serious injury… or even death.
Few people know that this hospitable part of the country is the home of a peculiar race of dwarves known as the Duergar. No one knows why they chose to live here, of all places. Maybe there’s gold hidden among those cliffs? Or maybe they just like to carry off my sheep. One thing’s true, though. They are malicious little buggers. Hairless, no higher than your knee. Would kill you as soon as look at you; and look they will, for no one ever heard them speak a word.
I wanted to share this podcast from the Folklore Society which I discovered today.
It is a discussion on folklore between Sir Terry Pratchett, author of the Discworld series (among others) and Dr. Jacqueline Simpson, one of the UK’s leading experts on folklore. The two have worked together for many years and even collaborated on The Folklore of the Discworld, which explores the use of myth and legend in Pratchett’s books.