Rome is the capital city and a special comune of Italy. Rome serves as the capital of the Lazio region. With 2,872,800 residents in 1,285 km2, it is the country's most populated comune, it is the fourth most populous city in the European Union by population within city limits. It is the centre of the Metropolitan City of Rome, which has a population of 4,355,725 residents, thus making it the most populous metropolitan city in Italy. Rome is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, within Lazio, along the shores of the Tiber; the Vatican City is an independent country inside the city boundaries of Rome, the only existing example of a country within a city: for this reason Rome has been defined as capital of two states. Rome's history spans 28 centuries. While Roman mythology dates the founding of Rome at around 753 BC, the site has been inhabited for much longer, making it one of the oldest continuously occupied sites in Europe; the city's early population originated from a mix of Latins and Sabines.
The city successively became the capital of the Roman Kingdom, the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire, is regarded by some as the first metropolis. It was first called The Eternal City by the Roman poet Tibullus in the 1st century BC, the expression was taken up by Ovid and Livy. Rome is called the "Caput Mundi". After the fall of the Western Empire, which marked the beginning of the Middle Ages, Rome fell under the political control of the Papacy, in the 8th century it became the capital of the Papal States, which lasted until 1870. Beginning with the Renaissance all the popes since Nicholas V pursued over four hundred years a coherent architectural and urban programme aimed at making the city the artistic and cultural centre of the world. In this way, Rome became first one of the major centres of the Italian Renaissance, the birthplace of both the Baroque style and Neoclassicism. Famous artists, painters and architects made Rome the centre of their activity, creating masterpieces throughout the city.
In 1871, Rome became the capital of the Kingdom of Italy, which, in 1946, became the Italian Republic. Rome has the status of a global city. In 2016, Rome ranked as the 14th-most-visited city in the world, 3rd most visited in the European Union, the most popular tourist attraction in Italy, its historic centre is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. The famous Vatican Museums are among the world's most visited museums while the Colosseum was the most popular tourist attraction in world with 7.4 million visitors in 2018. Host city for the 1960 Summer Olympics, Rome is the seat of several specialized agencies of the United Nations, such as the Food and Agriculture Organization, the World Food Programme and the International Fund for Agricultural Development; the city hosts the Secretariat of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Union for the Mediterranean as well as the headquarters of many international business companies such as Eni, Enel, TIM, Leonardo S.p. A. and national and international banks such as Unicredit and BNL.
Its business district, called EUR, is the base of many companies involved in the oil industry, the pharmaceutical industry, financial services. Rome is an important fashion and design centre thanks to renowned international brands centered in the city. Rome's Cinecittà Studios have been the set of many Academy Award–winning movies. According to the founding myth of the city by the Ancient Romans themselves, the long-held tradition of the origin of the name Roma is believed to have come from the city's founder and first king, Romulus. However, it is a possibility that the name Romulus was derived from Rome itself; as early as the 4th century, there have been alternative theories proposed on the origin of the name Roma. Several hypotheses have been advanced focusing on its linguistic roots which however remain uncertain: from Rumon or Rumen, archaic name of the Tiber, which in turn has the same root as the Greek verb ῥέω and the Latin verb ruo, which both mean "flow". There is archaeological evidence of human occupation of the Rome area from 14,000 years ago, but the dense layer of much younger debris obscures Palaeolithic and Neolithic sites.
Evidence of stone tools and stone weapons attest to about 10,000 years of human presence. Several excavations support the view that Rome grew from pastoral settlements on the Palatine Hill built above the area of the future Roman Forum. Between the end of the bronze age and the beginning of the Iron age, each hill between the sea and the Capitol was topped by a village. However, none of them had yet an urban quality. Nowadays, there is a wide consensus that the city developed through the aggregation of several villages around the largest one, placed above the Palatine; this aggregation was facilitated by the increase of agricultural productivity above the subsistence level, which allowed the establishment of secondary and tertiary activities. These in turn boosted the development of trade with the Greek colonies of southern Italy; these developments, which according to archaeological ev
Burray is one of the Orkney Islands in Scotland. It is one of a chain of islands linked by the Churchill Barriers. Burray lies between Mainland and South Ronaldsay, is linked to both by the Churchill Barriers. Barriers 1, 2, 3 connect Burray with Mainland, Orkney via the islets of Glimps Holm and Lamb Holm in Holm Sound to the north east. Barrier 4 links across Water Sound. To the west is the tidal island of Hunda joined by a causeway. Further west, across Scapa Flow, are the islands of Flotta and Calf of Flotta 6 kilometres away. In 2001, the population of Burray was 357, a total that had grown to 409 by 2011; the main settlement, Burray Village, is a former fishing port on the south west coast. There are settlements of Northtown and Hillside on the island. Burray is made up of Old Red Sandstone of the Devonian period; the island is indented in the north west by Echnaloch Bay. Burray Ness and Burray Haas are two headlands in the east. Attractions in Burray include the Heritage Centre at Viewforth.
The island curlew. One of the largest Viking hoards in Scotland was discovered on 22 April 1889 by Mr G Petrie, Little Wart, Burray when he was peat-cutting in the North Town Moss, it consisted of over 140 items of silver bullion, including many fragments of arm ring or'ring-money', about a dozen coins The date proposed for deposition is c.998. During the early 18th century, the laird of Burray was one Sir James Stewart. Stewart is said to have been involved with a murder in Kirkwall in 1725, went on the run for twenty years. A Jacobite sympathiser, he ended up fighting in the Battle of Culloden in 1746, was one of the few survivors. However, when he returned to Burray after the battle, he happened to chance upon the son of the murder victim, who reported him to the authorities. Stewart was arrested, ended up dying in a prison cell in London; the novelist Mary Brunton was born Mary Balfour on Burray on 1 November 1778. On 14 October 1939, the Royal Navy battleship HMS Royal Oak was sunk at her moorings within the natural harbour of Scapa Flow, by the German submarine U-47 under the command of Günther Prien.
U-47 had entered Scapa Flow through Holm Sound, just to the north of Burray, one of several eastern entrances to Scapa Flow. The eastern passages were protected by measures including sunken block ships and anti-submarine nets, but U-47 entered at night at high tide by navigating between the block ships. To prevent further attacks, the First Lord of the Admiralty, Winston Churchill ordered the construction of permanent barriers. Work began in May 1940 and the barriers were completed in September 1944, but were not opened until 12 May 1945, four days after the end of World War II; the Churchill Barriers project required a substantial labour force, which peaked in 1943 at over two thousand. Much of the labour was provided by around 1200 Italian prisoners of war, captured in the desert war in North Africa, who were transported to Orkney from early 1942 onwards; as the use of POW labour for War Effort works is prohibited under the Geneva Conventions, the works were justified as'improvements to communications' to the southern Orkney Islands.
The prisoners were accommodated in two camps, some at Camp 34 at Warebanks on Burray and the rest at Camp 60 on Lamb Holm where the famous Italian Chapel was built. Camp 34 had its own chapel but this was destroyed at the end of the war with the rest of the camp. Photos exist of Camp 34's football band. Burray Community Association
Human prehistory is the period between the use of the first stone tools c. 3.3 million years ago by hominins and the invention of writing systems. The earliest writing systems appeared c. 5,300 years ago, but it took thousands of years for writing to be adopted, it was not used in some human cultures until the 19th century or until the present. The end of prehistory therefore came at different dates in different places, the term is less used in discussing societies where prehistory ended recently. Sumer in Mesopotamia, the Indus valley civilization, ancient Egypt were the first civilizations to develop their own scripts and to keep historical records. Neighboring civilizations were the first to follow. Most other civilizations reached the end of prehistory during the Iron Age; the three-age system of division of prehistory into the Stone Age, followed by the Bronze Age and Iron Age, remains in use for much of Eurasia and North Africa, but is not used in those parts of the world where the working of hard metals arrived abruptly with contact with Eurasian cultures, such as the Americas, Oceania and much of Sub-Saharan Africa.
These areas with some exceptions in Pre-Columbian civilizations in the Americas, did not develop complex writing systems before the arrival of Eurasians, their prehistory reaches into recent periods. The period when a culture is written about by others, but has not developed its own writing is known as the protohistory of the culture. By definition, there are no written records from human prehistory, so dating of prehistoric materials is crucial. Clear techniques for dating were not well-developed until the 19th century; this article is concerned with human prehistory, the time since behaviorally and anatomically modern humans first appeared until the beginning of recorded history. Earlier periods are called "prehistoric". Beginning The term "prehistory" can refer to the vast span of time since the beginning of the Universe or the Earth, but more it refers to the period since life appeared on Earth, or more to the time since human-like beings appeared. End The date marking the end of prehistory is defined as the advent of the contemporary written historical record.
The date varies from region to region depending on the date when relevant records become a useful academic resource. For example, in Egypt it is accepted that prehistory ended around 3200 BCE, whereas in New Guinea the end of the prehistoric era is set much more at around 1900 common era. In Europe the well-documented classical cultures of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome had neighbouring cultures, including the Celts and to a lesser extent the Etruscans, with little or no writing, historians must decide how much weight to give to the highly prejudiced accounts of these "prehistoric" cultures in Greek and Roman literature. Time periods In dividing up human prehistory in Eurasia, historians use the three-age system, whereas scholars of pre-human time periods use the well-defined geologic record and its internationally defined stratum base within the geologic time scale; the three-age system is the periodization of human prehistory into three consecutive time periods, named for their respective predominant tool-making technologies: Stone Age Bronze Age Iron Age The notion of "prehistory" began to surface during the Enlightenment in the work of antiquarians who used the word'primitive' to describe societies that existed before written records.
The first use of the word prehistory in English, occurred in the Foreign Quarterly Review in 1836. The use of the geologic time scale for pre-human time periods, of the three-age system for human prehistory, is a system that emerged during the late nineteenth century in the work of British and Scandinavian archeologists and anthropologists; the main source for prehistory is archaeology, but some scholars are beginning to make more use of evidence from the natural and social sciences. This view has been articulated by advocates of deep history; the primary researchers into human prehistory are archaeologists and physical anthropologists who use excavation and geographic surveys, other scientific analysis to reveal and interpret the nature and behavior of pre-literate and non-literate peoples. Human population geneticists and historical linguists are providing valuable insight for these questions. Cultural anthropologists help provide context for societal interactions, by which objects of human origin pass among people, allowing an analysis of any article that arises in a human prehistoric context.
Therefore, data about prehistory is provided by a wide variety of natural and social sciences, such as paleontology, archaeology, geology, comparative linguistics, molecular genetics and many others. Human prehistory differs from history not only in terms of its chronology but in the way it deals with the activities of archaeological cultures rather than named nations or individuals. Restricted to material processes and artifacts rather than written records, prehistory is anonymous; because of this, reference terms that prehistorians use, such as Neanderthal or Iron Age are modern labels with definitions sometimes subject to debate. The concept of a "Stone Age" is found useful in the archaeology of most of the world, though in the archaeology of the Americas it is called by different names and begins with a Lithic sta
Flotta is a small island in Orkney, lying in Scapa Flow. The island is known for its large oil terminal and is linked by Orkney Ferries to Houton on the Orkney Mainland and Lyness and Longhope on Hoy; the island has a population of 80. At the turn of the 20th century, the island was a quiet rural community like many other small islands of Orkney, but its sheltered location led to three major upheavals in the island in the century; until 1914, Flotta was a quiet farming community. In 1910, a population of 431 included four carpenters and three dressmakers. Everything changed with the arrival of the Royal Navy in Scapa Flow at the start of World War I. There is a photograph held by the Imperial War Museum in London that shows a boxing match taking place on Flotta in front of a wartime audience of 10,000 people. During World War I, the island was home to a naval base; the dreadnought HMS Vanguard sank nearby in 1917, reputedly the worst maritime disaster in UK waters. In WW2, the island was again used as a military base.
1918 saw the mass exodus of Navy personnel, 1939 saw their return. After the second world war the island had good piers and facilities, but a declining population, it took until 1970 for fresh water to be piped to the island from Hoy. In 1974, Occidental Petroleum started construction of the island's oil terminal; this became the second largest major oil terminal serving the UK North Sea, the largest being Sullom Voe in Shetland. It took only two years from the start of construction until the first of the crude oil was pumped into the terminal, during which thousands of workers were posted at the "camp" in Flotta to complete the facility as Britain's thirst for oil was growing by the day; the Flotta oil terminal was opened by the energy minister, Tony Benn MP, on 11 January 1977. The oil terminal provides the landing for the Claymore fields pipeline system. In addition, it provides a safe facility for the receipt and trans-shipment of oil produced from the UK Atlantic margins. Flotta lies at the southern end of Scapa Flow, with Calf of Flotta being at the north-east corner of the island.
The island of Fara is 300 m across Weddel Sound, to the north-west. Meanwhile, South Walls and Hoy are each 1 km from Flotta, to the south, south-west and west, respectively. Nevi Skerry is situated 1 km east of Flotta in the Sound of Hoxa. South Ronaldsay is 2.5 km east of Flotta across the sound of Hoxa. The highest point on Flotta is West Hill at 58 m, adjacent to the wind turbine; the main population centre is at Whome, situated in the centre of the southern half of the island. To the north, Whome is separated from the Golta Peninsula by a tidal bay. Flotta has a seal colony at Stanger Head, at the south-east corner of the island; the Royal Navy planted 1000 spruce trees during World War II, which are situated between Sutherland Pier and the oil terminal, in the vicinity of the Naval Cinema. About 10% of the spruce trees survive; the oil company has planted 40,000 trees and shrubs. Much of the western side of the island is heath, as is the Golta Peninsula to the north-east of the island; the island has a resident population of 80 people in 48 households.
The main centre of population is in the settlement of Whome. The community primary school is mothballed due to there being no children of that age left on the island. Healthcare services are provided by the Stromness Surgery, with a nurse practitioner based on Flotta. Flotta Fire Station, situated next to the school, formally closed on 25 October 2012; the service provided by the fire station was transferred to the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service on 1 April 2013. The 2.3MW wind turbine, installed in 2010, will provide the community with a cash contribution of £100,000 over the lifetime of the turbine. Prof Sutherland Simpson FRSE physiologist The main industry on the island is energy production and distribution. Repsol Sinopec Energy UK Limited's Flotta Oil Terminal, processes oil and gas from the North Sea for onward transfer; the oil terminal has been operational for 36 years. Opus Plus Ltd. an environmental research company, is based within the oil terminal complex. Supplied by German manufacturer Enercon, the 2.3MW Flotta wind turbine was brought online in June 2010 at a cost of £3 million.
The turbine, connected to the National Grid, has a hub height of 64 m and a rotor diameter of 71 m. The Orkney Island Council provides employment to several people on Flotta. Farming remains an important source of revenue for the island economy, along with handicraft. A small number of residents are employed on the Orkney Mainland; the island is served by one shop, which operates as a general store, a post office and a petrol station. The nearest supermarkets are situated in Kirkwall, on the Orkney Mainland, which has branches of Tesco and Lidl; the island has a mains water supply, boreholes are used. Flotta didn't have a mains electricity supply until 1977, although most households had had their own electricity generators for many years beforehand. Mains electricity is supplied by Scottish Hydro Electric; the island is connected to the BT telephone network. Mobile phone connections can be an issue. Broadband internet connection is possible on the island. There is no mains gas supply on Flotta, although coal and heating oil are delivered and Calor Gas is stored at the shop.
In 2005, Flotta was considered to have the potential of expanding the island economy with heritage tourism, with a particular regard for the World War II-era structures which are spread across the island. The possible development of a marina was considered, at that time; the island is served by Orkney Ferries with ferr
A tidal island is a piece of land, connected to the mainland by a natural or man-made causeway, exposed at low tide and submerged at high tide. Because of the mystique surrounding tidal islands many of them have been sites of religious worship, such as Mont Saint-Michel with its Benedictine Abbey. Tidal islands are commonly the sites of fortresses because of their natural fortifications. Ma Shi Chau in Tai Po District, northeastern New Territories, within the Tolo Harbour Jiangong Islet in Kinmen Naaz islands in Persian gulf, southern seashore of Qeshm island Jindo Island and Modo Island in southwest South Korea Lihou in Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands Mandø Island – on Denmark's western coast Knudshoved Island – north of Vordingborg on southern Zealand, Denmark Île Madame in Charente-Maritime Île de Noirmoutier in Vendée Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy Tombelaine in Normandy The Halligen in the North Frisian Islands, Germany/Denmark The Neuwerk in the Wadden Sea, Germany Coney Island near Rosses Point, County Sligo Omey Island in Connemara, County Galway, Connacht Inishkeel, County Galway, Connacht Grótta in Seltjarnarnes in Capital Region Cortegada Island in Pontevedra coast, Galicia.
San Nikolas Island in Lekeitio, Bizkaia Asparagus Island, Mount's Bay, Cornwall Burgh Island, Devon Burrow Island, Portsmouth Harbour Chapel Island, Cumbria Chiswick Eyot in the River Thames in London Gugh in the Isles of Scilly Hilbre Island, Middle Eye and Little Eye in the River Dee estuary, between North Wales and the English Wirral, but administratively in England. Horsey Island, Essex Lindisfarne, Northumberland Mersea Island, Essex Northey Island, Essex Osea Island, Essex Piel Island, Cumbria Sheep Island, Cumbria St Mary's Island, North Tyneside St Michael's Mount, Cornwall Nendrum Monastery on Mahee Island, Strangford Lough Baleshare in the Outer Hebrides, joined to North Uist Bernera Island, joined to Lismore Brough of Birsay in Orkney, joined to Orkney Mainland Castle Stalker on Loch Laich in Argyll Cramond Island in the Firth of Forth Davaar Island near Campbeltown, off the Kintyre peninsula Eilean Shona in Loch Moidart, Highland Eilean Tioram, in Loch Moidart Erraid off the Isle of Mull Hestan Island near Rough Island in Auchencairn Bay Islands of Fleet: Ardwall Isle and Barlocco Isle in Galloway Isle Ristol, the innermost of the Summer Isles Kili Holm in Orkney, joined to Egilsay Oronsay in the Inner Hebrides, joined to Colonsay Rough Island opposite Rockcliffe, Dumfries & Galloway Vallay, joined to North Uist, Outer Hebrides Burry Holms off the Gower Cribinau off Anglesey Gateholm off the south west coast of Pembrokeshire Ynys Llanddwyn off Anglesey Mumbles Lighthouse located in Mumbles, near Swansea St Catherine's Island in Pembrokeshire Sully Island in the Vale of Glamorgan Worm's Head at the end of the Gower Ynys Cantwr off Ramsey Island, Pembrokeshire Ynys Feurig off Anglesey Ynys Gifftan in Gwynedd, north Wales Ynys Gwelltog off Ramsey Island, Pembrokeshire Ynys Lochtyn on the coast of Cardigan Bay43 tidal islands can be walked to from the UK mainland.
Finisterre Island off of Bowen Island, British Columbia, Canada Micou's Island in St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada Minister's Island in New Brunswick, Canada Ross Island and Cheney Island in Grand Manan, New Brunswick, Canada Wedge Island, Nova Scotia, Canada Whyte Islet in West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada Bar Island in Maine Battery Point Light in California Bumpkin Island in Massachusetts Camano Island in Puget Sound of Washington State, since earth filled Cana Island Lighthouse in Wisconsin Charles Island, in Connecticut Douglas Island in Alaska High Island, New York Long Point Island, MaineNahant, MA The Point Walter Sandbar in Perth, Western Australia has formed into a tidal island and is only connected to the mainland in extreme low tides. Penguin Island in the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park Former tidal island Bennelong Island in Sydney, Australia was developed into Bennelong Point and is now the location of the Sydney Opera House. Matakana Island in Tauranga Harbour Opahekeheke Island in the Kaipara Harbour Puddingstone Island in Otago Harbour Rabbit Island, Bells Island, Bests Island in Tasman Bay The Hauraki Gulf islands of Motutapu Island and Rangitoto Island are connected at low tide The Okatakata Islands and Walker Island in Rangaunu Harbour Island Islet Tied island Vanishing island Media related to Tidal islands at Wikimedia Commons
St Magnus Cathedral
St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall dominates the skyline of Kirkwall, the main town of Orkney, a group of islands off the north coast of mainland Scotland. It is the most northerly cathedral in Britain, a fine example of Romanesque architecture built for the bishops of Orkney when the islands were ruled by the Norse Earls of Orkney, it is owned not by the church, but by the burgh of Kirkwall as a result of an act of King James III of Scotland following Orkney's annexation by the Scottish Crown in 1468. It has its own dungeon. Construction began in 1137, it was added to over the next 300 years; the first bishop was William the Old, the diocese was under the authority of the Archbishop of Nidaros in Norway. It was for Bishop William. Before the Reformation, the cathedral was presided over by the Bishop of Orkney, whose seat was in Kirkwall. Today, it is a parish church of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland, therefore technically no longer a cathedral; the Orkneyinga Saga tells how bloodthirsty intrigue and saintly piety led to the cathedral's foundation.
Other accounts tell a similar, though less saintly, tale. St Magnus had a reputation for gentleness. On a raid led by the King of Norway on Anglesey, Magnus refused to fight and stayed on board singing psalms. King Eystein II of Norway granted him a share of the earldom of Orkney held by his cousin Håkon, they ruled amicably as joint Earls of Orkney from 1105 to 1114, their followers fell out, the two sides met at a thing on Orkney Mainland, ready to do battle. Peace was negotiated and the Earls arranged to meet each other on the small island of Egilsay, each bringing only two ships. Magnus arrived on 16 April 1116 with his two ships, but Håkon treacherously turned up with eight ships. Magnus was captured and offered to go into exile or prison, but an assembly of chieftains insisted that one earl must die. Håkon's standard bearer refused to execute Magnus, an angry Håkon made his cook Lifolf kill Magnus by striking him on the head with an axe. Magnus was buried in the Christchurch at Birsay; the rocky area around his grave miraculously became a green field, there were numerous reports of miraculous happenings and healings.
William the Old, Bishop of Orkney, warned that it was "heresy to go about with such tales" was struck blind in his Birsay cathedral and subsequently had his sight restored after praying at the grave of Magnus, not long after visiting Norway. Gunhild, sister of Magnus, had married Kol, the king of Norway granted their son Rögnvald Kolsson the right to his uncle's earldom in 1129. Earl Rögnvald took a fleet to Orkney, but the islanders resisted and Earl Paul who had succeeded Håkon would not give up control without a fight. Earl Rögnvald Kolsson was advised by his father Kol to promise the islanders to "build a stone minster at Kirkwall more magnificent than any in Orkney, that you'll have dedicated to your uncle the holy Earl Magnus and provide it with all the funds it will need to flourish. In addition, his holy relics and the episcopal seat must be moved there ". Meanwhile, Rögnvald secretly had Paul kidnapped and shipped away to be murdered in Caithness. Rögnvald duly became Earl of Orkney.
In 1135, Magnus was canonised, with 16 April becoming St Magnus' day. His remains were moved east to St Olaf's Kirk in the small settlement known as Kirkjuvágr, meaning "church bay", now Kirkwall. Work on the cathedral began under the direction of Kol; when funds ran short, Kol advised Rögnvald to restore odal rights for cash payment. In 1158, while work was still under way, Rögnvald was killed by a Scottish chieftain, his bones were brought to the Cathedral and he was canonised in 1192, though the records of his sainthood are missing. Rögnvald's bones were re-interred during work on the building in the 19th century; the Romanesque cathedral begun in 1137 has fine examples of Norman architecture, attributed to English masons who may have worked on Durham Cathedral. The masonry uses red sandstone quarried near Kirkwall and yellow sandstone from the island of Eday in alternating courses or in a chequerboard pattern to give a polychrome effect; as completed during the 12th century, the original cathedral had three aisled bays to the chancel with the bay at the east end shorter, apsed in a similar way to the original apse at Durham, a transept with single east chapel, eight bays to the nave as at Durham and Dunfermline Abbey.
When the cathedral was ready for consecration the relics of St Magnus were enshrined in it. In 1917, a hidden cavity in a column was found, containing a box with bones including a skull showing a wound consistent with a blow from an axe; the original cathedral comprises the choir of today's church. In the late 12th and early 13th century, the building was extended to the east with vaulting throughout, and, in the late 14th century, the present lower front was joined to the rest of the building; these elements introduced the Gothic style with pointed arches. In 1468, when Orkney was annexed for Scotland by King James III, St Magnus Cathedral came under the control of the Archbishop of St Andrews. Most notable amongst them was Bishop Robert Reid, who presided at St Magnus from 1541 to 1558; the Protestant Reformation in 1560 had a less dramatic effect on St Magnus Cathedral than in some other parts of Scotland, but the church had a narrow escape in 1614. Government forces suppressing the rebellion of Robert, the son of Patrick Stewart, 2nd Earl of Orkney, had besieged and destroyed Kirkwall Castle and intended to destroy St. Magnus Cathedral after rebels had hidden inside
Hoy is an island in Orkney, measuring 143 square kilometres — ranked largest in the archipelago after Mainland. A natural causeway, the Ayre, links to much smaller South Walls; the dramatic coastline of Hoy greets visitors travelling to Orkney by ferry from the Scottish mainland. It has extremes of many kinds: some of the highest sea cliffs in the UK at St John's Head, which reach 350 metres. Although Lyness is the largest settlement on Hoy, the capital is in fact Longhope; the two most northerly Martello Towers stand here, built to defend the south entrance to Scapa Flow at Longhope in 1814 towards the end of the Napoleonic War. The highest point in the archipelago, Ward Hill, is on Hoy; the main naval base for the British fleet in both the First and Second World Wars, Scapa Flow, was at Lyness in the southeast of the island. Some rather incongruous Art Deco structures nearby date from this period; the Arts and Crafts architect William Lethaby rebuilt Melsetter house for mountaineer Thomas Middlemore at the end of the nineteenth century leaving untouched the adjacent barn, mid-18th century.
An unusual rock-cut tomb, the Dwarfie Stane, lies in the Rackwick valley towards the north. It is unique in northern Europe, bearing similarity to Neolithic or Bronze Age tombs around the Mediterranean; the tomb has cleft, hence its name. Orkney Ferries traverse the west of Scapa Flow with two routes: Lyness on Hoy and Longhope on associated Walls via small Flotta to/from the village of Houton on Orkney Mainland. Moaness in Hoy via small Graemsay to/from the town of Stromness on Orkney Mainland. Hoy is part of the Hoy and West Mainland National Scenic Area, one of 40 in Scotland. In Norse mythology, Hoy hosted the never-ending battle between Heðin and Högni. Hoy is an Important Bird Area; the northern part of the island is an RSPB reserve due to its importance for birdlife great skuas and red-throated divers. It was sold to the RSPB by the Hoy Trust for a nominal amount. Anastrepta orcadensis, a liverwort known as Orkney Notchwort, was first discovered on Ward Hill by William Jackson Hooker in 1808.
The northern and western parts of Hoy, along with much of the adjoining sea area, is designated as a Special Protection Area due to its importance for nine breeding bird species: arctic skua, great black-backed gull, great skua, Black-legged kittiwake, peregrine falcon and red-throated diver. The area is important for its seabird assemblage, which supports 120,000 individual seabirds during the breeding season. Hoy is featured prominently in the 1984 video. Island of Hoy website launched December 2008 Old Man of Hoy picture gallery