A Scottish Clansman

Clan Tartans

The Clan Donald is undisputably the largest of all the Highland Clans, at one time controlling virtually the whole of Scotland's western seaboard from the Butt of Lewis in the north to the Mull of Kintyre in the south, with possessions in Ireland also, and in the Isle of Man. The name of Clan Donald derives from Donald of Islay, grandson of the mighty Somerled. Donald had a number of children but in particular, two sons, Angus Mor and Alasdiar Mor. From the later decend the Clan Alister, the MacAllisters of Loup. Angus Mor's son, Angus Og, supported Robert bruce and was granted many of the vast territories formerly possessed by his ancestors.

Douglas or Dugald, son of Somerled, is ancestor of this Clan. Unfortunately for the MacDougalls, their Chief supported the losing side in the contest between Robert the bruce and the Comyns, and was deprived of his lands. In 1354 however, John MacDougall of Lorn married Robert I's granddaughter, and the family recovered some of it's former power. The MacDougalls supported the Stuarts and in 1715, the MacDougall Chief's wife held Dunollie Castle against the Government troops whille he was fighting at Sheriffmuir with the Jacobite force.

MacDuff, 1st Earl of Fife, was held to be the Earl of Fife connected with Macbeth. The MacDuffs held the ancient privilege of crowning the kins of Scotland. The old earldom became extinct in 1353 on the death of Duncan, 12th Earl. In 1759 William Duff, Lord braco, was created Earl of Fife in the Irish peerage.

Ewen of Otter lived in the 13th century. Swene, last of Otter, granted the lands of Otter to Duncan Campbell in 1432 and resigned the barony of Otter in Argyllshire to James I, from whom it passed to the Campbells. A large number of MacEwans settled in the Lennox, Lochaber and Galloway. Elspeth MacEwan was the last witch to be put to death in Scotland and was executed in Kirkcudbright in 1698.

Parlan or Bartholomew, who lived in the reign of King David bruce, held territories at the head of Loch Lomond and is believed to be ancestor of this clan. The MacFarlanes also claim descent from the ancient Celtic Earldom of Lennox from whom they received their lands at Arrochar. In the 16th century the MacFarlanes embarked upon a feud with the Colquhouns and in 1592 were responsible for the murder of Sir Humphrey Colquhoun.

MacFie,MacPhee or MacDuffie
This also includes MacPhee and MacDuffie. A branch of Clan Alpin, MacDuffie of Colonsay was reported to be hereditary Keeper of the Records of the Lord's of the Isles. The MacFies held Colonsay until the mid 17 th century and later were scattered through the Clearances. Some followed Lochiel; other the Islay MacDonalds. On Oronsay there are a number of MacDuffie tombs, but members of the Clan are now found all over the world.

Back to Clan Index..

Back to Ness-Scape..