top of page
< Back

The First Blast of the Trumpet

Macpherson, Marie


Hailes Castle, 1511. Midnight on a doom-laden Halloween and Elisabeth Hepburn, feisty daughter of the Earl of Bothwell, makes a wish to wed her lover, the poet David Lindsay. But her uncle has other plans. To safeguard the interests of the Hepburn family, she is to become a nun and succeed her aunt as Prioress of St. Mary’s Abbey, Haddington. However, plunged into the political maelstrom and religious turmoil of the early Scottish Reformation, Hepburn's life there is hardly one of quiet contemplation. Strong-willed and independent, she clashes with those who question her unorthodox regime at St. Mary’s, including Cardinal David Beaton and her rival, Sister Maryoth Hay. But her greatest struggle is against her godson, John Knox. Witnessing his rejection of the Roman Catholic Church, aided by David Lindsay, she despairs that the sins of her past may have contributed to his present disenchantment.

bottom of page