button to main menu  Martineau's Complete Guide to the English Lakes, 1855

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Page 75:-
Derwent Isle, is the other of the four larger islands. Lord's Isle was once a part of the mainland. The Ratcliffes cut a fosse, in the feudal times, and set up a drawbridge. When the young Lord Derwentwater was captured for being "out" in 1715, his lady escaped, and saved her liberty and the family jewels (to use them on behalf of her husband) by clambering up one of the clefts of Wallabarrow Crag, since called the Lady's Rake. Every where are there traces of the unhappy family; even in the sky, where the aurora borealis is sometimes called, to this day, Lord Derwentwater's lights, because it was particularly brilliant the night after his execution.
  floating island
The lake is about three miles long, and, at its broadest part, about a mile and a half wide. Its waters are singularly clear, and its surface often unruffled as a mirror. Then it reflects the surrounding shores with marvellous beauty of effect,- from the bare crest of the crag and peak of the mountain to the grassy knoll and overhanging birch. Pike, trout, and perch abound in the lake; but not char, which requires deeper water. The Floating Island, whose appearance is announced in the newspapers at intervals of a few years, has obtained more celebrity than it deserves. It is a mass of soil and decayed vegetation, which rises when distended with gases, and sinks again when it has parted with them at the surface. Such is the explanation given by philosophers of this piece of natural magic, which has excited so much sensation during successive generations. Sometimes it comes up a mere patch, and sometimes measuring as much as an acre.
gazetteer links
button -- Derwent Water
button -- (floating island, Derwent Water)
button -- Lady's Rake
button -- Lord's Island
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