On May 12, 563, on the eve of Pentecost, Columcille, or St. Columba as we know him now, arrived on the Island of Iona. Columba had 12 companion monks with him. The island had been granted to Columba and his monks, possibly by Columba's kinsman, King Conall of Dalraida. Columba soon began his efforts to convert the local population.
Sir Walter Scott visited Iona in 1814, on his trip to visit the Northern Lights, which was published in "Northern Lights or a Voyage in the Lighthouse Yacht to Nova Zembla and the Lord where in the summer of 1814". Scott commented “my eyes, familiarised with the wretchedness of Zetland (Shetland) and the Harris, are less shocked with that of Iona.”