One of the most powerful and revered clans in Scotland is Clan Campbell, who’s ancestral home is Inverary Castle in Argyll.
The Campbell’s are an example of how clan power can transition through the ages, with Campbell chiefs taking up the important role of the Dukes of Argyll.
While the Campbell’s fought for Scotland in the Wars of Scottish Independence (14th century) by the 18th century they were instrumental allies of the British government during the Jacobite rising, a turbulent period when Scots, led by Charles Edward Stuart, tried to regain the British throne.
The Campbell’s controlled around 20 castles at their peak and exerted significant influence over politics and society far beyond their home territory.
Historians reckon Clan Campbell is the greatest in terms of members, with an estimated 20 million people either sharing the Campbell name or having ancestors who were protected by the Campbells.
Clan Mackintosh hail from the lands around Inverness in the Scottish Highlands and the current seat of the chief is at Moy Hall. The original seat was Moy Castle, which was situated on Moy Island. However, only a few remains are left of this once magnificent castle.
The Mackintosh’s buried their chiefs in the lands of Petty, the original clan heartlands, and clan members to this day make the journey there to pay respect to their ancestors.
Clan Mackintosh was involved in many battles throughout history. For example, in 1263, Ferquhar Mackintosh rallied his men to fight in the Scottish-Norwegian war, battling valiantly against Haakon IV’s army.
Angus Mackintosh married Eva Dal, daughter of Dougal Dal, who was the chief of Clan Chattan, in 1291. This resulted in Clan Chattan forming an unusual confederation of smaller, independent clans under the leadership of the Mackintosh’s.
In 1337, the Battle of Drumlui was fought between Clan Mackintosh and Clan Cameron over the land of Glenlui and Loch Arkaig. This resulted in a bitter and bloody rivalry between the two clans which lasted for 350 years.
Clan Mackintosh supported Robert the Bruce, resulting in a feud with Clan Comyn, who challenged Bruce. Many battles and invasions of territory occurred over the years, including a raid on Moy Island. Things looked to be moving towards peace when a reconciliation feast was proposed. However, in what could be a script from Game of Thrones, the Mackintosh’s massacred the Comyn’s at the feast.