Clach Na Cudain strathspey

Also known as Clach Na Cuddin, Clachnacuddin, Stone Of The Tubs.

There are 6 recordings of this tune.

Clach Na Cudain has been added to 3 tunebooks.

Download ABC

One setting

X: 1
T: Clach Na Cudain
R: strathspey
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
D<D F>E D2 A,2|D<D F>A B>AB>d|D<D F>E D2 (3DEF|G>A,F>A, E>A, C<E|
D<D F>E D2 A,2|D<D F>E (3DFG (3ABc|(3dAG (3FGE (3DFA (3dAF|G>A,F>A, E>A, C<E||
d>fA>f d/e/f/g/ a>f|d>fA>f d>fA>f|d>fA>f d/e/f/g/ a>f|g>Af>A e>Ac>e|
dfAf d/e/f/g/ a>f|dfAf d>Ad>f|B<gA<f G<eF<d|G>A,F>A, E<A,C<E||

Ten comments

A strathspey from Bill Lamey and Marie Jess Macdonald

Fiddle and piano. Marie was one of the older Cape Breton players who would double the melody the fiddler was playing here and there so their recording could be called a duet on this tune. This tune may be heard on the Rounder CD Full Circle. Their setting differs here and there in the 1st part from that in Skye, Kerr, etc., especially with the striking run of triplets in the repeat.

Rumour has it that the title (stone of the tubs) refers to a stone that stood in Inverness, where the womenfolk who had been washing clothes in the Ness would down their washtubs for a blether and invent rumours like this one. It is also said that the stone disappeared bit by bit into the pockets of those who emigrated, to remind them of Inversneckie, and it became so small that it was covered over with asphalt.

It’ll probably transpire that it’s a landmark somewhere else.


Checking a few more books I see that this setting is in Scott Skinner’s Scottish Fiddler.

For what it’s worth “Clach” collective, Cloich, singular

if it was a single stone it should be cloich, however it may have more to do with the perfusion of wash tubs than a stone, “clachan na cudain” ??

“if it was a single stone it should be cloich”

I don’t think so. “Cloich” is the dative of “clach” (genitive “cloiche” nom pl. “clachan”), according to my books (also “cloch”is listed). There are also several other terms which refer to a single stone:

Clach-bhrath - a rocking stone
Clach-chinn - a top stone
Clach-mhile - a milestone
Clach-mhuillin - a millstone
Clach-chreadh - a brick
Clach-oisinn - a conerstone
Clach-liobhair - a grinding stone
Clach-na-sùl - the apple (lit. stone) of the eye.

“Cho fad ’s a mhaireas Clach na Cùdain, mairidh cliù iomraiteach na Ban-rìgh Bhictoria nar cuimhne.”

“’As long as Clachnacuddin exists, Victoria’s illustrious character will endure in our memory”

The mind boggles.

Also - “Clach-na-cineamhuinn” - The fatal stone; the stone on which the ancient Caledonian kings were inaugurated.

The “fatal stone” is probably a poor translation (Armstrong) - “Clach-na-cinneamhain” is another spelling, and “stone of descent” has been offered - stone of destiny or fate is poss.

Furtiver, it’s one of two Gàidhlig names for the Stone of Scone.

incorrect setting..

Its a pity that the only version on here of this ancient Scottish tune is a transcription of a Cape Breton players variation of the original.. Not downing the CB at all just, seems a pity the original is not posted here.. otherwise people might think this is the definitive version.. I will post the correct version asap.

“ this ancient Scottish tune”

I haven’t found a setting earlier than the 19th century.