Bluidy Tam and his card game with the devil
Dalziel or Dalzell, as well as Bluidy Tam and the Muscovite de’il. He was a Scottish Royalist General in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms.
Born in Linlithgowshire; the son of Thomas Dalyell of the House of the Binns, Linlithgowshire; head of a cadet branch of the family of the Earls of Carnwath, and of Janet, daughter of the 1st Lord Bruce of Kinloss, Master of the Rolls in England.
Legend has it that “Bluidy Tam” enjoyed on occasion a hand of cards with the Devil. During one of these games, the Devil losing threw the card table at the General. The Devil missed and the Table flew threw through the window and ended up in a pond on the grounds of the House of the Binns. This tale was passed down through generations of inhabitants of the Binns. In 1870 following a particularly hard drought, a Marble topped Card table was seen poking through the low waters of the pond. In 1930 the Mother of the present Tam Dalyell asked a local joiner to repair the legs on the table, to find out that the about to be retired tradesman’s first job was to retrieve said table from the pond.