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Amelia Volume 1 Chapter 27


More Genealogy

[page 331}
ATTENTION must now again be turned to the Genealogy. The narrative in the “Baronage” at the period after the executions consequent on Glenfruin falls into a very regrettable error, asserting that the immediate successor of Glenstray was his illegitimate son. No such person appears in the “Records,” and Ian dhu nan Lurach, Glenstray’s brother, left three lawful sons, of whom Gregor, the eldest, eventually succeeded as de facto Chief. The source of this serious mistake cannot now be discovered, but the circumstances giving rise to it must have been very credibly related, before Sir John MacGregor Murray could have adopted such a statement.

For the better refutation of the error, the words of the “Baronage” are here quoted:-

“Alexander Laird of MacGregor . . . . . leaving no lawful issue and his brother John being killed at Glenfruin unmarried, [1]   the succession of this most ancient family jure sanguinis, most undoubtedly devolved upon Gregor, heir male in a direct line of John Laird of Macgregor No. 12. of these memoirs of whom afterwards. Soon after Alexander’s death there was a meeting in the old church of Strathfillan, where in Gregor’s absence the tribe called ‘Sliochd dhiul chier’ set up a Chief of their own in usurpation of his right; of which Gregor who was a very fine darling fellow having intelligence; hastened to the meeting and carried with him Gregor, a natural son of the last laird, a man of martial fire who had been bred in his family and was married to his (Gregor’s) only daughter. Upon entering the Church he found the new elected Chief placed in a chair resembling a throne, above the rest; to him he immediately made up and throwing him under his feet, placed his son-in-law in the chair without any person daring to oppose, and he was thereafter acknowledged Chief by the whole Clan except by his brothers-in-law when they came of age.”

As most Highland traditions are founded on fact, it is probable that [page 332} such a scene may have taken place; although it does not match the ascertained circumstances at this time; the period, the actors, and even the alleged cause, may all have been different, and no one is likely now to be able to cast any light upon it. [2]  

John dhu nan Lurag, or “Black John of the Mail-coat,” mentioned in the list of the chief houses of the Clan as “Johnne dhu McGregor, brother to the Laird McGregour,” was a leading man in every fray. It is stated in the complaint made by Dalguise, 1602, that “The said Johnne McGregour being in his own cradak in a rowme that he haldis of the Laird of Tullibardine,” &a. This was the house or castle of Innis Gregor at the eastern end of Loch Voil, said to have been fortified on the land side by a fosse and drawbridge, and on the other three sides washed by the lake. The following account is from a memorandum taken down from the words of John Fergusson, a native of Stronvar, aged 60, in 1817, by the Rev. Alexander MacGregor, minister of Balquhidder, in reply to questions written out by Sir John MacGregor Murray :-

“Innis MhicGhrioghair on Loch Voil also called ‘Geata ‘n tuim bhain’ belonged to John Dhu MacGregor who chased the Colquhouns at Glenfruin. There was a space between the island and the shore in the end of last century about six yards wide which space was filled up in 1762. It is said that a drawbridge connected the island with the mainland and the pillars of it could still be seen the end of the 18th century. John Fergusson ‘remembers to have seen an old building there composed of lime and stone, and as it were a gentleman’s House and place of defence.’ It was 14 feet broad 60 feet in length within walls. He thinks the walls were 3 feet thick, he does not recollect how high the building was. He did not see any vault or arched room in it. The stones were afterwards used in filling up the intervening space between the island and the shore and in 1817 some were taken to surround the Innis with a dyke.” [3]  

At the conflict of Glenfruin John dhu was “killed by an arrow aimed by a stripling named McLintock, who succeeded in hitting him through the neck joint of his mail.”

[page 333}
The following lines are from an old memorandum amongst the Edinchip papers :-

“By MacGregor’s Bard at ye Battle of Glenfroon on seeing Lindsay of Bosville fall on the side of the Colquhouns.
“Tierna bhun olla,
‘scris olla mi chlai
B’chiar dun toll a hoana
‘m foll moana na lai.”

“By Colquhoun’s Bard on seeing John, brother of the Laird of MacGregor fall by the hands of McLintoch.
“Stappi hug u’n tante
orst bhic an Landarig og
Thug Ian duh nan Lurich lot,
mac ur bhic Gregoir voir.”

The spelling of the above is not very intelligible, but the correct reading is conjectured to be as follows :-
“Tighearna Bhunolla,
‘Cris olla mi chliaheamh
Bu chiar dubh fuil a’ choin
Am poll-moine na laidh.”

“ ‘s tapaidh thug thu’n tionndadh ort,
Mhic an Leanndaig oig
Thuit Iain dubh nan Luireach,
Mac ur Mhic Ghriogair mhoir.”

which may be thus translated :
“Lord of Bunolla
And a woollen belt about his sword,
Dark was the black blood of a dog,
In a peat hag lying.”

“Quickly you gave a turn
Young McLintoch
You gave a wound to Black John of the coat of mail
The fresh son of MacGregor.”

John dhu MacGregor, according to the “Black Book of Taymouth,” married a daughter of John Murray of Strowan, by whom he left three sons.

1. Gregor, who appears to have been in the custody of Sir John Murray of Tullibardine after his father’s death, and on whom devolved the [page 334} succession to his uncle Allaster of Glenstray.
2. Patrick, of whom the Laird of Grant had charge.
3. Ewin, of whom John Murray of Strowan, his maternal grandfather, was answerable. [4]  

The death of Glenstray did not suffice to appease the wrath of those who desired the extermination of the ClanGregor. The “Baronage” gives a fair abstract of the general condition of affairs in the time of the above Gregor.

“This Clan continued to be cruelly harassed through means of Argyle the Earl of Montrose, chancellor, . . . . and of George Buchanan, [5]   Lord Privy Seal, who had much of the king’s ear, and bore an ill will towards the MacGregors.

“To such a height of ferocity were matters carried, that a price being set upon the heads of the Clan by the Privy Council two of their enemies who had shared considerably of their estates, got blood hounds with which they hunted them, devouring and mangling them wherever they were found.

“But not only Glenurchy and the rest of that name employed themselves in this persecution, but all the Lords and Chiefs from the west to the north seas were enjoined to assist them; so that it would have been impossible for one of them to escape had all their neighbours been spirited with the same zeal with those who had private views to their estates and possessions.”

Alan, Chief of the Camerons, being then under a state of outlawry and prescription for joining the Marquis of Huntly against the “earl of Murray his estate became a prey to the neighbouring chiefs. Argyle had made himself master of the twenty pound land of Lochiel which Alan endeavoured to recover the conditions were submitted to his Majesty, and Clanranald employed to negotiate for Alan but the King would not hearken to any proposals of being reconciled to Locheil, unless he would enter into an indenture with the Earl of Argyle his lieutenant, and the Earl of Dunbar, Lord High Treasurer for extirpating the MacGregors, to which Alan having accordingly agreed his Majesty was so well pleased with his compliance, that he wrote him a letter with his own hand; in which after mentioning the conditions and ratifying the indenture against the MacGregors, he orders him faithfully and diligently to prosecute the same, until the final end thereof, in such form as you shall receive directions from the Earl of Argyll our Lieutenant.

“Pursuant to which there happened a fierce battle in the braes of Lochaber between a body of the Camerons and Macdonalds, and the MacGregors seconded by their allies, the Macphersons, in which the former were totally routed with considerable [page 335} loss. And though Locheil and the other chiefs who had been in perpetual friendship with the MacGregors, soon penetrated into the interested designs of their principal enemies, and instead of distressing, protected them from their violence, yet so keen and powerful were the conductors of their destruction, that a very severe act was made against them in the succeeding reign, upon a narrative of the diction of those in possession of almost all their estates, whereby their name was proscribed, and all persons at liberty to mutilate or slay them, without being liable to law therefor nay encouraged to it by promise of their ‘moveables, goods, and gear.’

“This barbarous law which is on record, made no distinction of age or sex, or character; five of their principal enemies, who had been raised upon their ruin, were for form’s sake appointed their judges while all persons were encouraged at short hand, to murder the MacGregors, whether greyhaired sires of many years, or the little babes who knew not how to offend; whether women or children; whether priests or laymen; whether rich or poor; whether innocent or guilty and all this says the Act ‘for the timeous preventing the disorder and oppressions that may fall out by the said name and Clan of MacGregor and their followers.’

“In this situation the MacGregors continued till the solemn league and covenant came into play, which as their principal enemies were deeply interested in, afforded them some respite. They were much courted to join the confederacy, upon promises of future friendship but as rebellion against Majesty had ever been detestable to them and as they believed that the present purposes once served the future friendship of the foederati would at best be lukewarm they declared ‘That as they bore the crown upon the point of their swords, they could not fail to use the latter in support of the former.’”

1604. April. It appears from a subsequent trial in the Court of Justiciary seven years later that it was in this month a skirmish took place in which Duncan Abroch lost his life. The following account of the occurrence is from the “Black Book of Taymouth” :-

“Attoure Robert Campbell second son of the said Sir Duncan (Campbell of Glenurchy), persewing ane great number of thame throch the countrie, in end overtuk thame at Benetoeg [6]   in the Brae of Glenurquhay, quhair he slew Duncane Abroch McGregour with his sone Gregore in Ardchyllie, Dougall McGregour McCoulcheir in Glengyle with his son Duncane, Charlis McGregour VcEane in Braiklie quha wer principallis in that band, with tuentie otheris of thair complissis slain in the chais.”

In the subsequent Record of Assize, given fully in 1611, it is noted that certain MacGregors were present

[page 336}
“At the fecht or skirmische of Bintoiche in ye moneth of Apryle 1604, and Dougall McGregour Clerache McGregour” was accused “for ye crewall slaughter of umqle Gregour sone to umqle Duncane Abroche McGregour be schuteing of him with ane arrow behind his back committit in August 1604.”

In Sir Robert Gordon’s history of the Earldom of Sutherland, quoted previously for his account of the conflict of Glenfruin, the following notice of the fight at Bintoig (or Ranefroy) appears :-

“The King caused proclaim them (the MacGregors) rebells, directed commission and lettres of intercommuning against them forbidding any of his lieges to harbor them. At last he employed the Earle of Argyle and the Campbells, who pursued them divers times; and at Bintoig wher Robert Campbell (The Laird of Glenurquhie his sone) accompanied with some of the ClanChameron, Clanab, and Clanronald to the number of two hundred chosen men fought against thriescore (about one third the number of their opponents) of the ClanGregor in which conflict tuo of the ClanGregor were slain, to wit Duncan Aberigh (one of the chieftanes) and his son Duncan. [7]  

Seven gentlemen of the Campbell syd wer killed, though they seemed to have the victorie. So after much slaughter, many skirmishes and divers slights used against the ClanGregor in end they subdued them by the death of many of them and their followers and no lesse if not far greater slaughter of the Campbells.”

From the “Chartulary” :-
“Duncan Abroche of Ardchoille
[8]   grandson of Duncan Ladosach had fled to Lochaber after the deaths of his father and Grandfather in 1552 he gave a Bond 1576, he is not named in the list of persons denounced after the death of Drummondearnach (Feb. 4 1589), but his name appears Feb. 1. 1592, as living at Corriechairmich part of the lands included in those of Ardchoille, and he was one of sixteen principal persons of the ClanGregor cited to appear personally before the Council at Stirling; again he and his brother Patrick are mentioned as ‘Duncan Abroch and Patrick Aldoch McGregors’ proposed parties in a bond by Allaster McGregor of Glenstray to the Earl of Argyll as Kings Lieutenant in the bounds of the ClanGregor 22. April 1601. and are stated, as about to be bound ‘for themselffis and all descending or to descend of umqle Duncan Latois thair predecessor.’ This bond however they did not sign. Patrick [page 337} Aldoch perished with Glenstray, [9]  

Jan. 1604.”

Returning to the “Baronage,” mention has been already made [10]   of Robert, 2nd son of Duncan Abberach XVII., a man of a rare martial genius. He laid the plan of attacking the Colquhouns in battle. The command of a division was given to Robert, to whose gallant conduct much of the success of that victorious though unlucky day is attributed, and his sword is actually preserved to this day. [11]  

His subsequent career is very interesting as it appears in the notices in State Records. Eventually, after a final submission in 1624., he was released from prison, August 1626, and delivered to Sir Donald McKy, Knight, to serve in the wars abroad under the charge of Count Mansfield, after which time nothing more is known of “Robin Abroch.”

From the “Chartulary” :-

“1604. Feb. 10. Ane (royall) Lre : maid to James Murray [12]   fear of Strowane his aires and assignaries of the gift of the eschete of all guidis geir &a; quhilkis pertenit of before to vmqle : Johnne Dow Mcgregour broyer germane to vmqle Alester Mcgregour of Glenstrae the tyme of his deceis. And now pertening to our Soverane Lord - thrw being of the said vmqle, Johnne Dow Mcgregour ordourly denuncit rebell - for not finding cautioun and souirtie of his Mr. and landlordis gif he ony had that war sufficient. And for failzing yairof vyer responsall personis that ha and all sic personis yat ar oblist to ansuer for be ye lawis of yis realme, actis of Parliament, and general Band sould keip his Maj, peax, gude reul and quyetnes And sould not invaid, truble, oppres, nor persew his hienes subjectis in yair persones, landis, &a. - Register of the Privy Seal.

“In this month messengers were sent with ‘Letters from the Council’ to the ‘Erle of Argyle and Laird of Glenurquhay’ also to persons in the Stewartrie of Stratherne and erldome of Athole to compeir befoir oure Souerane Lord justice and his deputiis in the tolbuith of Edinburgh the 17. day of Feb. instant to pas upoun the assyes of certane of [page 338} the Mcgregour. also to persons within the Stewartrie of Monteith and ye bounds of Lennox accordingly.

“1604. Feb. 17. In the Court of Justiciary of our Supreme Lord the King, held in the Judgement Hall of Edinburgh 17 Feb. 1604. by Mr. William Hairt of Adielands (misnomer for Levilands). - Justiciary Depute.”

Entered 11 MacGregors who were all condemned to death. See Chapter xxvi., pages 232 to 244.

“1604. March. A payment made by command of the Secreit Counsall for the apprehension and ‘presenting befoir yame of Dowle Oig McGregor quha yairefter was execute to ye deid’ - Treasurer’s Books.

“Item to Robert Elder messenger passing from Edinburgh and with Letters to charge the said McIntosche (viz. Lauchlane McIntosche of Dunnachtan) to exhibit before the said Lords of Secret Counsel the day foresid (10. April) of certane McGregors quha ar reteirit with their wifes, bairns, and guids to rest within his bounds and likewise to exhibit certain others of his own broken men to underlie such order as shall be prescribed to them at their coming under the pain of rebellion. - Treasurer’s Books.

“1604. April 17. Heiring the treacherie of ye tyrranus persones of ye name of Clangregor and fyreing of the toun (of Dumbarton) be yame Thairfore it is statut and ordanet yt the town be devydit in aught pairts and ilk aucht pt to vacht ane nycht The vaches to be arranit and placeit nytly by ye quartare Mrs chosen be the Baillies And quha keeps nocht vache according to ye Baillies ordinance to wit giff he be at hame himself And in his absence ane sufficient man, to pay fourties. for his diisbedience and the saym to be payit to the vacheis And yt the Baillies chies aucht quaitare masters. Item yt na dwellers in this town ressave ony strangers puir or rich wiout making the Baillies forsein under the paine of fourties the two pts to the town the third to the Baillies.

“1604. April. Letters charging Alex. Colquhoun of Luss, Buchanane of that ilk Aulay McAulay of Ardincaple, Robert Galbraith of Culcreuch……..Sempill of Foulwode, The Laird of McFarlane and Andrew Dow McFarlane of Gartavertane and all others baronis and landed gentlemen within the bounds of Lennox to convene and meet within the burgh of Dunbarten and agree upon the setting out of their watches and the loan and manner of their entertainment and to set out the said watches betwixt …….and the sixth day of April instant under the pain of Rebellion. - Treasurer’s Books.

“Item to messenger passing from Edinburgh with letters to be proclaimed at the market crosses of Stirling, Dunbartane, Perth, and Stewartries of Stratherne, and Menteith charging all our Sovereign Lords Lieges within the said bounds to raise the shout and fray upon the MacGregors whenever they happen to repair within their boundis And to rise, hunt, follow and pursue them forbearing to grant them any support under the pain to be repute pairt takers with them And with letters.

[page 339}
“1604. June. Item to David Lindsay keiper of the Tolbooth of Edinburgh at the commandment of the Lords of Council for entertaining of eleven pledges of the McGregors from the 10, day of May to the 1, day of July to the space of fiftyone days every one of them having in the day 13 shillings and 4 pence of allowance Inde - Ł374. - Treasurer’s Books.

“1604. July 13. The Baillies and Council of Dunbretan ‘concludit and ordanit that the Laird of MacGregor’s heid wy Patrik Aulddy his heid be put up in the Tolbuith on the maist convenient place the Baillies and Council thinks gud.’”

Strange custom of the times, when men were so familiar with bloodshed and its ghastly emblems, these gentle citizens probably thought themselves less barbarous than Glenstra when driven to take upon him “MacAlpin’s” fearful vow.

“1604. August 3 at Perth. Alexander Buchannane [13]   in Strathyre, Robert Mccoll, Johne Malcolme, and Patrik Buchannane, his sons, That whereas according to our Acts of Parliament made against the Clangregour anent the changing of their names The said complainers have presented themselves. Renounced their former names of MacGregor and have found sufficient and responsible cautionrie &a. - Hornings of Perth, General Register House, Edinburgh.

“August 31. Act anent the benefit for taking of MacGregors extended in favour of Camstradden.

“Anent the Supplication presented to the Lords of Secret Council by John Colquhoun [14]   fear of Cumstrodden making mention that whereas eftir the horrible and detestable murther committed be the wicked and unhappy Clangregor upon his Majesties good subjects of the Lennox His Highness and Lords of his Secret Council resolved altogether to extirpate and root out that infamous race and for the better effectuating thereof Acts and Proclamations were published promising a free pardon and remission to whatsomever person or persons who should take, slay, or present to justice ane of the said Limmers As in the said Acts published over all parts of this Kingdom at more length is contained And considering thereby the sincerity of his Majesties haste to have these infamous limmers punished, and being moved [page 340} therewithall to give his Majesty proof of his affection to his Majesty’s service in that errand the said complainer to the great peril and hazard of his life resolved to pursue them with his whole force and after many skirmishes and onsets had at sundry times with diverss of them at last he made an onsett on umquhill Gregor Cragniche McGregor, [15]   Duncane Mcilchallum [16]   and certain others of the most common and notorious thieves of all that name. And after a long and dangerous conflict had with them with the loss of the blood of certain of the complainers’ servants hee apprehended them, committed them toward, within the which the said Duncane barbarously stabbed himself whose head with the said Gregor Cragniche he presented to the said Lords of Secret Council at Stirling; who was executed to the deid as he worthily merited, and seeing in this particular the said Complainer for a testimony of his affection to do his Majesty’s service has hazarded his life and presented the said persons as said is, the benefit of the said Act ought to be extended to him and in his favours Humbly desiring therefore that he might have an act of council past and expede in his favour in manner and to the effect following &a. - Haddington’s MS. Collections in Advocate’s Library, Edinburgh.

“August 29. Andro Ramsay at the milne of Innerqueich against Argyle to present Allaster McAllaster McGregor and Johne McEwin McGregor for theft. - Register of Hornings.”

In the Comptroller’s account for the year is the following entry :-
“Item for the wagis of certain horse hyrit to carry XVI of the McGregouris fra Linlithquew to Edinburgh within the tyme of this compt.”

“Letter from the King to the Earl of Montrose 1604 Oct : 3.

“To our right trustie and wellbelouit counsellour the erle of Montroiss chancellour and remanent erlis lordis and vther of our counsale of estait in the kingdome of Scotland.

“Marginal title ‘Makgregouris, Erle of Argyle’s rewarde.’

“(Dated) From our honour of Hamptonn the thrid of October 1604.

“As for the McGregours we signified our pleasure that the Earl of Argyle should either prosecute the service according to the first condition, Like as we are willing that he should be assured of the reward appointed, or else that he should put matters under assurance till Martinmas, betwix and which time by advice of the Commissioners and such others of the Council as are here we shall certify our mind concerning the said Earl’s last petition, we would be glad that he should end the service and enjoy his reward for so is his meaning, that freely and honourably he should have it, but if we be frustrated and the country wrackit, we will be compelled to deal otherwise with him than we should wish his behaviour should procure.”

[page 341}
This letter from the King to the Scottish Council in Record of Council was copied into the Earl of Haddington’s Collections.
“1604. Oct. 29. Horning Apud Perth, Pursuers, Tenants of Sir David Lindsay of Edzell. against Findlay McLauchlan VcComes in . . . . . Ewin Dow McCondoquhie in Camescherachlie, Allaster McEan Dowie Rannoche, Donald McInnesche McInroy in Glentrone (Glentrumie) in Badzenoch Makgillipatrik Mcinneshin Crathly (Crathie) in Rannoche Johnne Tarlachsoun McLauchlan, servitor to James Glass & John McAllaster Gregour servitor to Duncan McGregour . . . . Johne McLauchlan McComes tenant to the said James Glass McFindlay McRobert tenant to the Laird of Grant Johne McCondochie Toundowie in Rannoche all ‘brokin heilland men’ for theft.” - Register of Hornings for the shire of Perth.

It may here be mentioned that a tradition exists that Stewart, Earl of Londonderry, is descended from the ClanGregor. Sir John MacGregor Murray remarks :-
“MacGregor of Ardnaconnell is said not to have been in the Battle (Glenfruin), but he found it difficult to maintain his estate in peace, and being in the habit of intimate friendship with his neighbour, MacAulay of MacAulay, who had an estate in Ireland called Bally Law, he exchanged it with MacGregor of Ardnaconnell, who went to Ireland, where he assumed the name of Stewart, and the belief in the country is that he was the ancestor of the family of Londonderry.”

The well-known and beautiful song, “MacGregor of Roro,” is said to have been composed about this time, and is here given from “The Killin Collection of Gaelic Songs,” by (late) Charles Stewart, Tigh’n Duin, Killin.

After the fight at Glenfruin, when the Chief and fifteen of the principal men of the Clan were executed, amongst the number was “Gregour MacGregour McIndochie in Roro.” “On the sad news reaching Glenlyon this lament was composed, but by whom is not known.”

[page 342}
MACGRIOGAIR ‘O RUARA.

1 Tha mulad, tha mulad,
Tha mulad, ga’m lionadh ;
Tha mulad bochd, truadh orm
Nach dual domh chaoidh dhěreadh.

2 Mu Mhac-Griogair a Ruaru,
D’ am bu dual bhi ‘n Gleann-Liobhunn,
Mu Mhac-Griogair n’am bratach
Dha ‘m butar tarach pioban.

3 Ga’m bu shuaicheantas giubhas
Ri bruthach ga ‘dhir eadh,
Crann caol air dheadh locradh,
‘S ite dhosrach an fhir-eoin.

4 Crann caol air dheadh shnai theadh,
Cuid do dh’ aighear mhic Righe ;
Ann an laimh dheadh Mhic Mhuirich,
Ga ‘chumail reidh direach.

5 Ge do bhuail a měmba-looch,
Gu m’ ghearan cha bhi mi ;
Ge do dhean iad orm-eu-coir,
A thi féin co ‘ni dhioladh.

6 ‘S luchd a ghabliail mo leithsgeil,
Anns a chaibeil so shios uam ;
Luchd a sheasamh mo chorach
Is e mo leňn iad bhi-dhi orm.

7 Mo chomh-dhaltan gaolach,
An leaba chaol ‘s an ceann iosal ;
Ann an leinne chaoil anairt,
Gun bhannan gun siod’ oirr’.

8 ‘S nach d’ iarr sibh ga fuaigheal
Mnaithean uaisle na tire,
Ort a bheirinse comhairle
Na ‘n gabhadh tu dhiom e.

9 Nuair a theid thu’n tigh-osda
Na ňl ann ach aon deoch ;
Gabh do dhrama na dčsheasamh,
‘Us bi freasd’ lach mu d’ dhaoineadh.

10 Na dean diuthadh mu d’ shoitheadh,
Gabh an ladar no ‘n taoman ;
Dean am faoghar do’ gheamhradh,
‘S dean an semhradh do ‘n fhaoiltich.

11 Dean do leaba ‘s na creagaibh
‘Us na caidil ach aotrom ;
Ge h-aineamh an fheorag,
Gheabhar seňl air a faodainn.

12 Ge h-aineamh an fheorag,
Gheabhar seol air an faodainn ;
Ge h-uasal an t-sheobhag
Is tric a ghabhar le foill I.

13 Tha mulad, tha mulad,
Tha mulad ga m’ lionadh ;
Tha mulad bochd truadh orm
Nach dual domh chaoidh dhireadh.


MACGREGOR OF RORO

There is sorrow, deep sorrow,
Heavy sorrow down-weighs me ;
Sorrow long dark forlorn
Whence nothing can raise me.

For MacGrigor of Roro
Whose home is Glenlyon
For the bannered MacGregor
With the loud War Pipe thundering.

His emblem the pine tree
On mountain-side swinging ;
His trim tapered arrows
The true bird winging.

Trim shafts that a King’s son
Might glory in bearing ;
From MacMurdoch’s strong hand
Home they sped, how unerring.

Now I will not complain
Though a coward should smite ;
Should they wrong and outrage,
Oh heaven who shall right me ?

‘Tis my pain they are not here,
Whom living nought ailed me
East in yon chapel lie
The true hearts that ne’er failed me.

Their fair heads are low,
My dear foster brothers ;
Them the scant linen shroud
In strait bed barely covers.

Linen shroud with no bands
Nor silk tassels made ready,
Nor sewed by the fingers
Of nobly born lady.

Now a rede I would rede thee,
And thereupon well think though ;
When though goest to the hostel
But a single cup drink though.

Stand and drink;- of the men
That are round thee be wary ;
Be it bale-dish or ladle
Drink it down nothing chary.

Make winter as autumn
The wolf days as summer ;
Thy bed be the bare rock,
And light be thy slumber.

For though scarce be the squirrel,
There’s a way got to find her ;
Though proud be the falcon
There are deft hands can bind her.

There is sorrow, deep sorrow,
Heavy sorrow down weighs me ;
Sorrow long dark, forlorn,
Whence nothing can raise me.



[1] This is an error - see next page.

[2] John Dhu’s sons being young at the time of his brother’s decease, some confusion may have arisen. In the “Black Book of Taymouth” it is stated that Allaster Roy “left no children bot ane dochter.” This daughter may have been concerned in the dispute.

[3] In corroboration of the tradition of Innis Gregor it is stated that John dubh occupied the 2 and a half merkland of Mekill Stronvar (exactly opposite this island on Loch Voil) and also the five merkland of Glenbaich (on Loch Earn side). - See Chapter XXI. 1598, Oct 21. volume 1 chapter 21

[4] See supra.

[5] John Buchannan, Baron of Buchlyvie, was killed at Glenfruin.

[6] A hill (2712 ft.) two miles N.W. of Loch Tulla, Glenorchy, Argyleshire.

[7] In the previous account of the skirmish of Bentoig from the “Black Book of Taymouth,” the name of the son of Duncan Abberach, slain with him, is mentioned as Gregor, and in the subsequent trial of a person for shooting a son of Duncan’s in the back, the name is also given as that of Gregor, but as the month of August is there mentioned, it is possible that one son perished at Bintoig and another a few months later by the shooting of an arrow. Duncan had a son by his first wife whose name is not mentioned in the “Baronage,” and who died young, but his other sons must have been of mature age in 1604, as Robert had a command at Glenfruin.

[9] It is a significant fact in confirmation of the claim of the MacIan family to the seniority that the War Cry should be taken from their possession Ardchoille. - Chartulary.

[10] Chapter XVI. Page 168. volume 1 chapter 16

[11] This sword is in the possession of Sir Malcolm MacGregor of MacGregor having been handed down with the utmost care. It is mentioned in a letter from Colonel Evan MacGregor Murray (Sir John MacGregor Murray’s father) as “Old Duncan Ladosach.” The tradition is that it was borne at Glenfruin, when it appears to have been used by Robert Abroch, and a letter from Duncan MacGregor of MacGregor to his nephew, implies that “Duncan Abberigh” was not himself in action at Glenfruin.

[12] Brother of John Dhu MacGregor’s wife. See page 333. volume 1 chapter 27

[13] See No. 85, List of 1586, Allaster McRobert (Moir) MacGregor in Strathyre, and his sons.

[14] Although Cumstrodden captured two MacGregors and claimed a reward for the same, few of the Colquhouns kept up the enmity, which shows that the quarrel could only have been of recent origin, and Sir John MacGregor Murray makes the following remarks in private MS. :- “To the honour of the family of Colquhoun it may be said that, far from participating in or countenancing the subsequent oppressions of the MacGregors, carried on by interested neighbours, the Colquhouns naturally did not possess themselves of any of their lands, but actually protected many of the Clan, and some of the most respectable tenants on the Estate of Colquhoun at this day are MacGregors under the name of Colquhoun, assumed for protection and retained from gratitude.”

[15] No. 40, List of 1586.

[16] Probably No. 50.