Campbell Clan Crest: A Boars Head.
Campbell Motto: Ne Obliviscaris (Forget Not).
Campbell Clan History:
The surname of Campbell derives from the Gaelic
'cam-beul' which means 'crooked mouth,' and possibly relates to the
physiognomy of an early chief. Marriage to the West Coast
heiress Eva O'Dubhne or O'Duine, brought Lochawe into the Campbell
portfolio during the 13th century, and the first recorded Chief was Sir
Colin, or Cailein Mor, who was recognised by John Baliol as
one of the principle barons of Argyll in 1292. The original castle
headquarters of the clan was on the island of Innischonnel on Loch Awe.
Landholdings thereafter incorporated Craignich, Melfort and Strachur,
together with lands in Cowal.
To begin with, the Campbells were dominated by the
all-powerful Macdougalls of Lorne who were responsible for killing Sir
Colin in 1296. This situation was soon remedied by his son Neil, who
became a devoted follower of Robert the Bruce, and, indeed, married the
King's sister. For his support, he was awarded the
confiscated Macdougall lands after Bruce's great victory against the
English at Battle of Bannockburn.
The Campbells of Strachur claim descent from Sir
Colin's cousin. From his younger son come the Campbells of Loudon. From
Sir Neil's younger son originate the Campbells of Inverawe.
Clan Campbell consistently supported the Royal
House of Stewart and, following the break up of the Lordship of the
Isles at the end of the 15th century, emerged as the most powerful clan
in the West Highlands. In 1445, Sir Duncan of Loch Awe was created Lord
Campbell. In 1457, his grandson Colin was created 1st Earl of Argyll
and through marriage acquired the Lordship of Lorne and one third of
the Lorne estates, which included the ancient castle of
The acquisition of Knapdale and Kintyre followed.
By the 17th century, the Clan held Mull, Morvern, Coll and Tiree. The
titles in the 1701 grant by which the Earl of Argyll was created Duke
indicate the clan territories under his authority: 'Duke of Argyll,
Marquess of Kintyre and Lorne, Earl Campbell and Cowal,
Viscount Lochow and Glenlya, Lord Inveraray, Mull, Morvern and Tiree.'
Dukes of Argyll were appointed Hereditary Sheriffs of Argyll and
Masters of the Royal Household in Scotland, Admirals of the Western
Coasts and Isles of Scotland, and Keepers of the castles of
Dunstaffnage, Tarbert, Carrick and Dunoon. However, it is always said
that their greatest distinction lies in carrying the title MacCailein
Mor, (Son of Big Colin) after the first Chief.
In 1641, Archibald, 8th Earl, was created 1st
Marquis of Argyll. He supported the more radical Covenanters against
Charles I, but later came to an understanding with Charles II and
crowned him at Scone in 1651. Nevertheless, his two-sided dealings with
Oliver Cromwell led to his execution for treason following the
Restoration. In time, his forfeited lands and titles were restored to
his son, another Archibald, but he too was executed for supporting the
Monmouth Invasion of 1685.
Things took a turn for the better for the
Campbells when William of Orange arrived in 1703. For supporting the
Protestant Cause, the10th Earl was created 1st Duke of Argyll and
Marquess of Lorne and Kintyre. During the negotiations running up to
the signing of the Treaty of Union in 1707, the 3rd Duke of Argyll was
considered to be the most influential man in Scotland.
In 1752, Colin Campbell of Glenue was murdered on
his way to evict tenants of Jacobite chiefs. The crime became known as
The Appin Murder and James Stewart of the Glens was found guilty and
hanged for the deed although it was widely believed that he was
In 1871, the 10th Duke of
Argyll married Princess Louise, daughter of Queen
Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman (1836-1908) was Prime Minister of Great
Britain from 1905-1908. He was born in Glasgow and, to inherit the
fortune of a deceased uncle, hyphenated his surname to add on the name
Bannerman. Sir Colin Campbell, Lord Clyde (1792-1863) was a carpenter's
son who rose through the ranks of the British Army to become a Field
Marshall in 1862.
The Clan Campbell Society is now a
world-wide organisation with a permanent base at Inveraray Castle.
Places of Interest:
Black Castle, near Moulin, Perthshire. King Robert I granted lands here
to Sir Colin Campbell of Loch Awe.
Castle Campbell (Castle Gloom), near Dollar,
Stirlingshire. Acquired by the Earl of Argyll in the 15th century.
Today the ruined castle is managed by Historic Scotland.
Crarae, Loch Fyne, Argyll. Seat of Campbells of
Succoth. Today the famous gardens here are managed by the National
Trust for Scotland.
Dunstaffnage, Argyll. Former McDougall Castle
awarded to Sir Colin Campbell and placed in the hands of a Hereditary
Constable. A chapel was constructed outside of the castle walls by the
Lords of Lorn. There is a burial aisle of Dunstaffnage Campbells. Flora
MacDonald was held prisoner here in the tower after having helped
Prince Charles Edward Stuart to escape from the Uists.
Innis Chonnel, Loch Fyne, Argyll. Ruins of castle
which belonged to Sir Colin Campbell of Loch Awe. The castle is still
owned privately by the Argyll family and is not open to the public.
However it can be viewed from the shore road along the east side of the
Inveraray Castle, Loch Fyne, Argyll. Headquarters
of the Clan Campbell Society and ancestral home of the dukes of Argyll.
Open to the Public.
Tobermoray Bay, Isle of Mull. The
Florencia, a great ship of the Spanish Armada, sank here in
1588. Rights of Salvage were granted to the Earl of Argyll by Charles I.
Associated family names (Septs): Arthur, Bannatyne, Burnes, Burness, Burnett, Burns, Caddell, Cadel, Calder, Cawdor, Connochie, Conochie, Denoon, Denune, Fisher, Gibbon, Gibson, Harres, Harris, Hawes, Haws, Hawson, Isaac, Isaacs, Iverson, Kellar, Keller, Kissack, Kissock, Lorne, Louden, Loudon, Lowden, MacArtair, MacArthur, MacCarter, MacColm, MacColmbe, MacConachie, MacConchie, MacConnechy, MacConochie, MacDiarmid, MacDermont, MacDermid, MacEller, MacElvie, MacEver, MacGibbon, MacGibson, MacGlasrich, MacGubbin, MacGure, MacIsaac, MacIver, MacIvor, MacKellar, MacKelvie, MacKerlie, MacKerlich, MacKessack, MacKessock, MacKissoch, MacLaws, MacLehose, MacNichol, MacNiven, MacNocaird, MacOnachie, MacOran, MacOwen, MacPhedran, MacPhun, MacTause, MacTavish, MacThomas, MacUre, Moore, Muir, Ochiltree, Orr, Paterson, Pinkerton, Tawse, Taweson, Tawesson, Thomas, Thomason, Thompson, Thomson, Ure.
Surname distribution in Scotland: The Campbell surname is most commonly found in Highland Region which includes all of the old counties of Caithness, Inverness-shire, Nairnshire, Ross and Cromarty, Sutherland and smaller areas of Argyllshire and Morayshire (Elginshire), The Outer Hebrides (most populated islands include Lewis and Harris, North Uist, South Uist, Benbecula and Barra), Orkney, Glasgow, Dunbartonshire, Ayrshire, Renfrewshire and Argyll and Bute.
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