Aleister Crowley bought Boleskine House in 1899 with the express purpose of performing an elaborate magickal ritual there. Part of this ceremony involved summoning demonic entities and binding them with the goal of removing their negative influences from the magician’s life. This sounds sketchy already because, regardless of what any magician tells you, demons cannot be controlled. The ritual and its aftermath is where much of the present-day Boleskine legend comes from.
However, this is precisely what made Boleskine House so appealing to Jimmy Page. If you’ve got the cash and are that much into Crowley, how could you not want such an intriguing piece of property? Jimmy Page became the owner of Boleskine House in 1970 just as Zeppelin was beginning to enjoy major success. Previous to that we know he had been gathering Crowley artifacts such as old manuscripts, bits and pieces of clothing such as robes and basically anything else he could get his hands on. To be in possession of such a significant piece of Crowley memorabilia was a major score for JP and is indicative of just how passionate and committed he was to the man himself and the occult in general.
However, Boleskine House existed long before the Crowley / Page connection. Legend has it that the house was built on the site of a 10th century Scottish kirk or church which had burned down killing the entire congregation trapped inside. Located 21 miles south of Inverness, halfway between the villages of Foyers and Inverfaragaig, the one story manor was built in the 1760's by Colonel Archibald Fraser as a hunting lodge and expanded several times by the family until 1830. Archibald was related to Lieutenant General Simon Fraser, Lord Lovat.
The house was built on land acquired from the church on a site specifically chosen to annoy Lord Lovat whose estate surrounded the property. Why did Colonel Fraser want to annoy his kinsman? During the Jacobite rebellion of 1745 Lord Lovat had sided with the English; not the best decision to make in Scotland. As you can see, there was already bad blood there which breeds more of the same. As far as the layout goes there were four bedrooms, a kitchen, living room, drawing room and library. Ok, let’s go back to the beginning; even before the current structure was there. In many ways this story begins and ends with fire.
Across from Boleskine House, just over the road, is the Fraser clan graveyard. Before the graveyard was there a medieval church stood on the site which had a reputation for strange activity. The only building that remains is a small mort-house which is where the coffined body would remain under guard until it was of no use to the grave robbers prevalent in those days. One legend suggests that there is a tunnel linking Boleskine House to the graveyard.
Given that the whole area is former church property and various houses of worship had stood there over the years it sounds fairly reasonable that there might be a leftover tunnel built for practical reasons; now the source of ominous legend.
The burning congregation story is one of the most well-known but another, less common story was uncovered by a schoolteacher doing research on a project for the locality in the 1980's.
Since she had actually visited Boleskine House some years earlier as a dinner party guest of Malcolm Dent (JP's old school friend installed as caretaker, who will be discussed shortly) coming across the history of Boleskine graveyard was of considerable interest to her. The account she found was compiled from the parish archives. In the 2nd half of the 17th century, Minister Thomas Houston (whose stone is still in the graveyard) was roused from his home when a local dark wizard had supposedly...
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