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MacGregor Clan

(Gaelic - Macgrioghair)

Crest: A Lions head erased, crowned with an antique crown, proper
Plant Badge: Scots pine
Motto: 'S rioghal mo dhream - Royal is my Race
War Cry: Ard-Choille
Pipe Music: Chase of Glenfruin

'S rioghal mo dhream (Royal is my race) is the claim of this, one of the most famous of clans, and the principal branch of Clan Alpin. The clan claim descent from Griogar, son of Alpin, in the 8th century. The home of the clan was the eastern border of Argyll and the western border of Perthshire, including Glenmorchy, Glenstrae, Glenlyon and Glengyle. The earliest possession of the clan, Glenorchy previously owned by the Campbells, was bestowed on the Macgregors for services rendered to Alexander II in his conquest of Argyll.

For a long time, the Macgregors maintained possession of their lands by right of the sword, but the animosity of surrounding clans resulted in attempts to displace the clan and the inevitable retaliation by the Macgregors, who thus earned the reputation of being a turbulent clan.

In 1603, Clan Gregor won a victory over the Colquhouns at Glen Fruin. The Colquhouns held a Royal Commission and the victory was considered an act of rebellion. The clan was consequently outlawed. Those that were not hunted down and exterminated were forced to change their name. The persecution continued into the reign of Charles I. It was not until 1775 that the clan was restored finally to their rightful name.

One of the most notorious of the name was Rob Roy Macgregor (1671-1734). The celebrated freebooter and hero of Sir Walter Scott's novel was a son of Lieut-Col. Donald Macgregor of Glengyle.

At the island cemetery on Inchcailloch, many of the old chieftains of the MacGregor Clan (Children of the Mist) are buried.

The actual burying of chieftains at Inchcailloch was a lighthearted affair. A good dram was taken before setting out on the boats to convey the deceased and mourners to the island cemetery, and another was taken if the weather turned bad and still another on achieving landfall safely.

Many a tale is told of bodies lost overboard or bodies left unburied whilst the company grew merry together.


If you are on the eastern shore of Loch Lomond, why not go on the Ardess History Trail, where Rob Roy Macgregor once owned land in the area which was confiscated for being an outlaw.

Are you descended from any of these famous Scottish Clans? Check out your Scottish Roots