Kids Love Cornwall LivingIssue #KL 2018/19
Finding Cornish legends
They capture the imagination and tug at the heartstrings – but perhaps mostly excitingly, Cornwall’s many and varied legends cast a whole new light on well-loved locations.
King Arthur, North Cornwall
As the legendary birthplace of King Arthur, Tintagel Castle is the first port of call on the Arthurian trail, but the trail has many twists and turns, and takes followers on a journey through St Nectan’s Glen, Slaughterbridge and onwards to Bodmin Moor. Here the wild and rugged landscape is strewn with tales of Arthur’s adventures and at the mythical Dozmary Pool and the Lady of the Lake.
Giant Cormoran, St Michael’s Mount
Whether by boat or by foot, the journey in itself to St Michael’s Mount is a mini adventure and waiting for you is a world of fanciful tales bursting with courage and heroics. Upon reaching the Mount you will discover an incredible land once trodden by giants, and one giant in particular named Cormoran. With a growling stomach he would wade ashore and feast upon cows and sheep that he stole from the villagers.
The Mermaid of Zennor, Zennor
The most romantic of Cornish legends. The beautiful mermaid captures the heart of a local chorister. With love as his guide he turns to a life beneath the shore and leaving Zennor. As a lasting memento they carve a Mermaid Chair from wood which can still be seen in St Senara’s Church today. Listen carefully when you next visit Zennor – it is said that you hear the sound of the lovers singing together.
Giant Wrath, Portreath
In Portreath you can see the remains of boulders. These are said to have been the weapon of choice for a fearsome giant named ‘Ralph the Wrath’. Ralph the Wrath lived in a collapsed sea cave and had an appetite for sailors. He longed for their treasure and would attack passing ships and fill his cave with the loot. You can visit this cave, which is known locally as Ralph’s Cupboard.
Giant Bolster, St Agnes
The giant, Bolster, lorded over St Agnes, but love was eventually his downfall. In a bid to win over St Agnes, a beautiful local girl, he fell prey to her cunning when he tried to prove his love for her by filling a hole at Chapel Porth with his blood. Unbeknown to Bolster, the hole was bottomless and he bled to death. As a sign of this lovelorn tale, a hint of red still lingers on the cliff there.
Learn about legends and tick off the tasks…
o Traverse the bridge at Tintagel
o Feel the giant’s heartbeat at the Mount
o Read the mermaid’s poem in Zennor
o Sit on a giant’s boulder in Portreath
o Search for Bolster’s blood in St Agnes