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Brosdale Island
Brosdale Island - - 1086856.jpg
OS grid reference NR4983462323
Coordinates 55°47′22″N 5°59′32″W / 55.789393°N 5.9921890°W / 55.789393; -5.9921890
Physical geography
Island group Inner Hebrides
Highest elevation 36m
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Country Scotland
Council area Argyll and Bute
Population 0

Brosdale Island is an uninhabited island in the council area of Argyll and Bute, Scotland. It is 1.25 miles from Jura House on Jura. It is about 1/4 of a mile long and 1/4 of a mile wide.

The earliest comprehensive written list of Hebridean island names was undertaken in the 16th century by Donald Monro in his 16th century Description of the Western Isles of Scotland. Brosdale is not mentioned by name although there is a laconic entry referring to a Hasil Iyle "which in the Erish is callit Ellan-na-Crawiche". R. W. Munro was unable to identify the location of Hasil Iyle but writing 40 years later Peter Youngson suggested that Monro was referring to Brosdale. He did not offer a specific explanation for his identification although Brosdale does lie between Am Fraoch Eilean to the west and Eilean nan Gabhar in the Small Isles of Jura to the north which are more readily identifiable. However, Matheson suggests that Monro's "Ellan charn" may be Brosdale Island.


Youngson simply notes that "this beautiful island seems to have had various different names during its history". Matheson, as evidence for his idea that Brosdale is Ellan charn, states that it "appears on an old map as Chreig Yl.?" and mentions that the modern name has "obviously been re-named after Brosdale on the mainland of Jura opposite". 'Brosdale' is clearly Norse in origin, dalr meaning valley. 'Bros' is harder to interpret but may be from brok, meaning "bad, black grass". Hasil Iyle/Ellan-na-Crawiche suggests a wooded island, whereas Monipennie suggests that Ellan charn takes its name "from a cairne of stones".

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