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Title: Sutherland and Caithness in Saga-Time - or, The Jarls and The Freskyns
Author: Gray, James
Language: English
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Originally delivered as a Presidential Address to The Viking Society
for Northern Research, the following pages, as amplified and revised,
are published mainly with the object of interesting Sutherland and
Caithness people in the early history of their native counties, and
particularly in the three Sagas which bear upon it as well as on that
of Orkney and Shetland at a time regarding which Scottish records
almost wholly fail us.

When, however, these records are extant, use has been made of them
together with later books upon them, of which a list follows, and to
which references are given in the notes.

A special effort has been made to deal with the vexed question of the
succession to the Caithness Earldom after Earl John's death in
1231, with the pedigree of the first known ancestors of the House of
Sutherland, and with the mystery of the descent of Lady Johanna of

Acknowledgments of assistance received are tendered to the writers of
the books above referred to, but thanks are specially due to Mr.
A.W. JOHNSTON, Founder and Past President of the Viking Society, for
numerous hints, and for making the Index; to Mr. JON STEFANNSON for
reading the manuscript; and to Mr. ALAN O. ANDERSON, whose knowledge
of the English and Scottish Records of the period is as accurate as it
is extensive, and who has made several valuable suggestions.

But for the opinions expressed no one save the writer is responsible,
and, where records are scanty, much has necessarily been left to


  LONDON, W., 1922.




A.D. 82-790--Scope of this Book--Authorities--Roman times and their
result--Post-Roman days.


Geography and description of Cat--Brochs--Picts--Christianity
--Vikings--Gall-gaels--Gaelic--Land Settlement--The rise of the


790-1014--Constantine I and the Northmen--Kenneth and the Union of
the Picts and Scots--Thorstein the Red and Aud--Groa and Duncan of
Duncansby--The Vikings and Harald Harfagr--Ragnvald of Maeri and
Jarl Sigurd--Cyderhall--Torf-Einar, Thorfinn Hausakliufr, Skuli
and others--War for the Moray seaboard--Jarl Sigurd Hlodverson--
Christianity introduced in Orkney--Swart Kell--Earl Anlaf--Story
of Barth--Sigurd Hlodverson, Clontarf--"Darratha-liod"--Resumé.


1008-1064--King Malcolm's matrimonial alliances--Victory of
Carham--Thorfinn Sigurdson, Earl of Caithness and Sutherland--His
attempts on Orkney--Somarled, Brusi and Einar--Thorkel Fostri slays
Einar--Moddan created Earl of Caithness and slain by Thorkel--Battle
of Torfness--Death of Duncan--Thorfinn and Macbeth--Thorfinn and
Ragnvald Brusison--Marriage with Ingibjorg--Battle of Rautharbiorg--
Thorfinn sole Jarl of Orkney and Shetland--His travels, retirement,
and death--His chronology.


1058-1123--Paul and Erlend, jarls--Ingibjorg's marriage with
Malcolm III--Its objects--Norman conquest of England--King Magnus
Barelegs--Hakon and Magnus, jarls--Harold Slettmali and Paul the
Silent, jarls--Ingibiorg and Margret--Moddan in Dale--Feudalism in
Scotland--The Catholic Church--Alexander I and David I--The three
leading families in Caithness and Sutherland, of the Norse Jarls,
Moddan, and Freskyn de Moravia--The Mackays--The Gunns.


1123-1158--Harald Slettmali and Paul the Silent--Frakark and
Helga--Harald poisoned--Frakark in Kildonan--Plot against Jarl
Paul--The Moddan family--Audhild--Eric Stagbrellir--Ragnvald's
history and jarldom--Battle of Tankerness--Olvir Rosta and
Sweyn--Paul kidnapped--Harold Maddadson--Frakark's Burning--Thorbiorn
Klerk--Ragnvald's cruise to the East--Erlend Haraldson's grant of half
Caithness--Scramble for the earldom--Ragnvald's daughter Ingirid's
marriage to Eric Stagbrellir--Fight at Thurso--Erlend and
Sweyn--Erlend's death--Ragnvald's murder--His descendants.


1158-1206--Harold sole Jarl and Earl; his first family--Sweyn's
cruises and death in 1171--Harold's second wife, and family--Eric
Stagbrellir's family--Scottish affairs--Moray and the MacHeths--
Freskyn and Duffus--William MacFrisgyn--Hugo Freskyn of Sutherland, and
his brother, William of Petty--Hugo's grant to Gilbert, Archdeacon of
Moray--Hugo's family--William _dominus Sutherlandiae_--Events in the
North in 1153 and after--William the Lion's accession, 1165--Persons of
note at that date--Those in authority--Harold's forfeitures--Events
leading up to them--Eddirdovir and Dunskaith--Donald Ban
MacWilliam--Defeat of Thorfinn, Harold's son, and of Harold,
1196--Harald Ungi--Ragnvald Gudrodson--Victory of Dalharrold--The
Stewards--Death of Thorfinn, Harold's son--William the Lion in
Caithness--Death of Harold Maddadson, 1206.


1206-1263--David's eight years, 1206-1214--King William takes John's
daughter as a hostage--Murder of Bishop Adam, 1222--King Alexander's
expedition--John's forfeiture--Death of John's son, Harald,
1226--Snaekoll Gunni's son, grandson of Eric Stagbrellir--Murder of
Earl John--Trial at Bergen--Lady Johanna of Strathnaver.


1231-9--Difficulty of the subject--The Angus pedigree--The Diploma of
the Orkney Earls--Magnus II's charter--The wardship question--Three
claimants (1) Magnus, (2) Johanna of Strathnaver and (3) Earl John's
nameless hostage daughter--Skene's opinion--The Cheynes and Federeths,
descendants of Johanna--Her charitable gift--Her Moddan and Erlend
descent--Magnus II, his descent and marriage--Freskin de Moravia, his
descent, marriage, life, and death--The settlement of Caithness and
Sutherland--Creation of the Sutherland Earldom between 10th October
1237 and Magnus' death in 1239--Conclusion.


1263-1266--Recapitulation--Norse jarls and the Norse Crown--Affairs
in Sutherland--Battle at Embo--Dornoch Cathedral and its
constitution--The Angus line and the Freskyns--Hakon's fleet at
Ragnvaldsvoe sails south--Battle of Largs--Hakon's retreat
and death--The mainland of Scotland and the Hebrides won for
Scotland--Treaty of Perth, 1266.


The creed of the Viking--The causes of his migration--Odinism--Settlement
in the West--Celtic mothers--Effect on race, language and place-names--
Viking remains--Skaill, Dunrobin--Castles--The Viking type of man--The
blended race--Norman influence.





Anderson, Dr. Joseph. Rhind Lectures, "Scotland in Pagan Times."
Edinburgh, 1883 and 1886.

Antiquaries. Proceedings of The Society of Scottish.

Bain. Calendar of Documents relating to Scotland in Record Office.

Bannatyne Club--Publications of.

Barry, History of Orkney. Edinburgh, Constable, 1805.

Broxburn. (Strabrock.) History and Antiquities of Uphall, by Rev.
James Primrose. Edinburgh, Andrew Elliott, 1898.

Burnt Njal. Dasent's Translation. (B.N.)[2] Edinburgh, Edmonston &
Douglas, 1861.

Caithness Family History, by John Henderson. Edinburgh, David Douglas,

Caithness, The County of--by John Home. Wick, W. Rae, 1907.

Calder's History of Caithness. Glasgow, Thomas Murray & Son, 1861.

Cat, History of the Province of--by Rev. Angus Mackay. Wick, Peter
Reid & Co., Ltd., 1914.

Chalmers. Caledonia.

Chroniques Anglo-Normandes. Francisque Michel. Rouen, Ed. Frere, 1836.

Corpus Poeticum Boreale. Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1883.

Curie. Monuments of Caithness. Royal Commission's Report, 1911.

Curie. Monuments of Sutherland. Royal Commission's Report, 1912.

Dalrymple's Collections, (1705).

Diploma of the Earls of Orkney.

Du Chaillu. The Viking Age. John Murray, 1889.

Dunfermelyn, Register of. (Bannatyne Club.)

Early Scottish Kings, by E. William Robertson, 1862.

Eric the Red--Saga of.

Flatey Book (Flateyjarbok). Christiania, Mailings, 1860. (F.B.)

Fordun. Scottish Annals. Edited by W.F. Skene. Edinburgh, Edmonston &
Douglas, 1871.

Genealogie of the Earles of Southerland, by Sir Robert Gordon, Bart.
Edinburgh, A. Constable, 1813.

Hailes (Lord) Additional Case of Elizabeth, Claimant of the Earldom of
Sutherland and Annals of Scotland, (Dalrymple's Works, vol. 4).

Hakon Saga. Dasent's Translation, Rolls Edition, 1894. (H.S.)

Henderson, George--Norse Influence on Celtic Scotland. Glasgow,
Maclehose, 1910.

Henderson, George--Survivals in Belief among the Celts. Glasgow,
Maclehose, 1911.

Hume Brown. History of Scotland. (H.B.)

Innes, Familie of. (Spalding Club).

Laing and Huxley. Prehistoric Remains of Caithness. Williams, &
Norgate, 1866.

Lawrie, Early Scottish Charters. Glasgow, Maclehose, 1905.

Lawrie, Annals of the Reigns of Malcolm and William, 1153-1214.
Glasgow, Maclehose, 1910.

Liber Pluscardensis. Edited by Felix J.H. Skene. Edinburgh, William
Paterson, 1877.

Mackay, Rev. Angus. Book of Mackay. Edinburgh, Norman Macleod, 1906.

Magnus Saga (in Rolls Edition of Dasent's Translation of Orkneyinga

Maxwell, Sir Herbert, Early Chronicles relating to Scotland. Glasgow,
Maclehose, 1912.

Moray--Registrum Episcopatus Moraviensis (Bannatyne Club) (Reg.

Moray--Shaw's History of.

Munch's Symbolae or Notes to the Diploma of the Orkney Earls.

Munro, Dr. Robert. Prehistoric Scotland.

Nisbet's Heraldry.

Orcades, by Thormodus Torfaeus. Copenhagen, 1715.

Orcades, (Torfaeus) Translation by the Rev. A. Pope. Wick, Peter Reid,

Origines Islandicae. Vigfusson & York Powell. Oxford, Clarendon Press,

Origines Parochiales Scotiae. Vol. ii, part ii. Edinburgh, W.H.
Lizars, 1855. (O.P.)

Orkney and Shetland, by John R. Tudor. London, Edward Stanford, 1883.
(O. &. S.)

Orkney and Shetland Folk, by A.W. Johnston. Viking Society, 1914.

Orkneyinga Saga. Dasent's Translation, Rolls Edition. (O.S.)

Orkneyinga Saga. Anderson, and Hjaltalin and Goudie's Translation.
Edinburgh, Edmonston & Douglas, 1873.

Oxford Essays, 1858. (Dasent's Essay). London, John W. Parker & Son,

Pinkerton's History of Scotland preceding Malcolm III. Edinburgh, Bell
& Bradfute, 1814.

Rhys' Celtic Britain. London, S.P.C.K., 1908.

Robertson's Index. Edinburgh, Murray and Cochrane, 1798.

Rymer. Foedera.

Saint-Clair. Roland William. The Saint-Clairs of the Isles. Auckland,
H. Brett, 1898.

Scandinavian Britain, by W.G. Collingwood. London, S.P.C.K., 1908.

Scon. Liber Ecclesiae de.

Scott, Rev. Archibald--The Pictish Nation, its people and Church.
Edinburgh and London, Foulis Press, 1918.

Scottish Annals from English Chroniclers, Alan O. Anderson. London,
David Nutt, 1908.

Scottish Kings. Sir Archibald Dunbar, Bart. Edinburgh, David Douglas,

Scottish Peerages. Paul and Cokayne (Gibbs).

Skene, W.F. Celtic Scotland. Edinburgh, Edmonston & Douglas, 1878.

Skene, W.F. Chronicles of the Picts and Scots. Edinburgh, H.M. General
Register House, 1867.

Sutherland Book, by Sir William Fraser. Edinburgh, 1892.

Sutherland and the Reay Country, by the Rev. Adam Gunn. Glasgow, John
Mackay, Celtic Monthly Office, 1897.

Sverri's Saga. Translation by J. Sephton. London, David Nutt, 1899.


Thorgisl's Saga in Origines Islandicae (as above).

Viking Club. Caithness and Sutherland Records.}  London
Viking Club. Old Lore Miscellany.             }  29 Ashburnham
Viking Society. Saga Books, &c.               }  Mansions, Chelsea

William the Wanderer, by W.G. Collingwood. G.C. Brown Langham & Co.,
47 Great Russell Street, London, W.C., 1904.

Worsaae. Danes and Norwegians. London, John Murray, 1852.

Worsaae. The Prehistory of the North. London, Trübner, 1886.

Wyntoun's Chronicle. Edinburgh, Edmonston & Douglas, 1872.

[Footnote 1: An excellent Bibliography of Caithness, by Mr. John
Mowat, was published by W. Rae, Wick, in 1909, and of Caithness and
Sutherland by The Viking Club, 1910, by the same author.]

[Footnote 2: The Capitals and abbreviations placed in brackets after
certain authorities, give their initial letters and short titles,
(e.g. (O.S.) Orkneyinga Saga), as used in the notes at the end of this

Early Sources of Scottish History, A.D. 500 to 1286, by Alan O.
Anderson. Oliver & Boyd, Edinburgh.

NOTE.--Since this little book was printed, the above great work
has appeared. To the student of the Norse invasions its value is

[Transcriber's note: The following errata have been applied to the


  Page 1, line 13, for "they" read "Man."
  "  28, line 9, for "or" read "of."
  "  40, line 23, for "Kundason" read "Hundason."
  "  42, line 24, after "note" reference[14] omitted.
  "  50, line 17, for "mainland of" read "Unst in."
  "  65, line 35, for "burnings" read "revenges."
  "  65, line 37, for "burnt" read "killed."
  "  87, line 18, for "Earl Ragnvald" read "Jarl Ragnvald."
  " 104, lines 4 and 5, for "Magnus' great-grandson's granddaughter's
  husband" read "Magnus' granddaughter's great-grandson."
  " 117, line 16, omit "a child of."




In the following pages an attempt is made to fit together facts
derived, on the one hand, from those portions of the Orkneyinga, St.
Magnus and Hakonar Sagas which relate to the extreme north end of the
mainland of Scotland, and, on the other hand, from such scanty English
and Scottish records, bearing on its history, as have survived, so as
to form a connected account, from the Scottish point of view, of the
Norse occupation of most of the more fertile parts of Sutherland and
Caithness from its beginning about 870 until its close, when these
counties were freed from Norse influence, and Man and the Hebrides
were incorporated in the kingdom of Scotland by treaty with Norway in

References to the authorities mentioned above and to later works
bearing on the subject have been inserted in the hope that others,
more leisured and more competent, may supplement them by further
research, and convert those portions of the narrative which are at
present largely conjectural from story into history.

What manner of men the prehistoric races which in early ages
successively inhabited the northern end of the Scottish mainland may
have been, we can now hardly imagine. Dr. Joseph Anderson's classical
volumes[1] on _Scotland in Pagan Times_ tell us something, indeed
all that can now be known, of some of them, and in the Royal
Commission's[2] _Reports and Inventories of the Early Monuments_ of
Sutherland and of Caithness respectively, Mr. Curle has classified
their visible remains, and may, let us hope, with the aid of
legislation, save those relics from the roadmaker or dykebuilder.
Lastly, such superstitions, or survivals of beliefs, as remain in the
north of Scotland from early days have been collected, arranged, and
explained by the late Mr. George Henderson in an able book on that
subject.[3] Enquiries such as these, however, belong to the provinces
of archæology and folk-psychology, and not to that of history, still
less to that of contemporary history, which began in the north,
as elsewhere, with oral tradition, handed down at first by men of
recording memories, and then committed to writing, and afterwards
to print; and both in Norway and Iceland on the one hand, and in
the Highlands on the other such men were by no means rare, and were
deservedly held in the highest honour.

Writing arrived in Sutherland and Caithness very late, and was not
even then a common indigenous product. Clerks, or scholars who could
read and write, were at first very few, and in the north of Scotland
hardly any such were known before the twelfth century of our era,
save perhaps in the Pictish and Columban settlements of hermits and
missionaries. Of their writings, if they ever existed, little or
nothing of historical value is extant at the present time. But the
_Orkneyinga, St. Magnus_, and _Hakon's Sagas_, when they take up their
story, present us with a graphic and human and consecutive account
of much which would otherwise have remained unknown, and their story,
though tinged here and there with romance through the writers' desire
for dramatic effect, is, so far as the main facts go, singularly
faithful and accurate, when it can be tested by contemporary

Until the twelfth or the thirteenth century, save for these Sagas, we
learn hardly anything of Sutherland, or, indeed, of the extreme north
of Scotland from any record written either by anyone living there or
by anyone with local knowledge, and for facts before those given in
the _Orkneyinga Saga_ we have to cast about among historians of
the Roman Empire and amongst early Greek geographers, or later
ecclesiastical writers, to find nothing save a few names of places and
some scattered references to vanished races, tongues and Churches. For
information about the Picts we have at first to rely on the researches
of some of our trustworthy archæologists, and at a later date on
the annals, largely Irish, collected by the late Mr. Skene in his
_Chronicles of the Picts and Scots_, and in the works of Mr. Ritson,
into which it is no part of our purpose to enter in detail. All the
authorities for early Scottish history have been ably dealt with by
Sir Herbert Maxwell in his book on the _Early Chronicles Relating to
Scotland_, reproducing the Rhind lectures delivered by him in 1912. At
the end of our period reliable references to charters from the twelfth
century onwards will be found in _Origines Parochiales Scotiae_, and
especially in the second part of the second volume of that valuable
work of monumental research, produced, under the late Mr. Cosmo Innes,
by Mr. James Brichan, and presented to the Bannatyne Club by the
second Duke of Sutherland and the late Sir David Dundas. There are
also the reprints, often with elaborate notes, of Scottish Charters
by Sir Archibald C. Lawrie, The Bannatyne Club, The Spalding Club, The
Viking Society, Mr. Alan O. Anderson, and others. The first volume
of the Orkney and Shetland Records published by the Viking Society is
prefaced by an able introduction of great interest.

By way of introduction to Norse times, we may attempt to state very
shortly some of the leading events in Caledonia in Roman, Pictish, and
Scottish times from near the end of the first century to the beginning
of the tenth, so far as they bear on the agencies at work there in
Norse times.

The first four of the nine centuries above referred to had seen
the Romans under Agricola[4] in 80 to 84 A.D. attempt, and fail, to
conquer the Caledonians or men of the woods,[5] whose home, as
their name implies, was the great woodland region of the Mounth or
Grampians. Those centuries had also seen the building of the wall of
Hadrian between the Tyne and Solway in the year 120, the campaigns
of Lollius Urbicus in 140 A.D. and the erection between the Firths
of Forth and Clyde of the earthen rampart of Antonine on stone
foundations, which was held by Rome for about fifty years. Seventy
years later, in the year 210, fifty thousand Roman legionaries had
perished in the Caledonian campaigns of the Roman Emperor Severus, and
over a century and a half later, in 368, there had followed the
second conquest of the Roman province of Valentia which comprised the
Lothians and Galloway in the south, by Theodosius. Lastly, the final
retirement of the Romans from Scotland, and indeed from Britain, took
place, on the destruction of the Roman Empire in spite of Stilicho's
noble defence, by Alaric and the Visigoths, in 410.

From the Roman wars and occupation two main results followed. The
various Caledonian tribes inhabiting the land had then probably for
the first time joined forces to fight a common foe, and in fighting
him had become for that purpose temporarily united. Again, possibly
as part of the high Roman policy of Stilicho, St. Ninian had in the
beginning of the fifth century introduced into Galloway and also
into the regions north of the Wall of Antonine the first teachers of
Christianity, a religion which, however, was for some time longer to
remain unknown to the Picts generally in the north. But, as Professor
Hume Brown also tells us in the first of the three entrancing volumes
of his History, "In Scotland, if we may judge from the meagre accounts
that have come down to us, the Roman dominion hardly passed the stage
of a military occupation, held by an intermittent and precarious
tenure." What concerns dwellers in the extreme north is that although
the Romans went into Perthshire and may have temporarily penetrated
even into Moray, they certainly never occupied any part of Sutherland
or Caithness, though their tablets of brass, probably as part of the
currency used in trade, have been found in a Sutherland Pictish tower
or broch,[7] a fact which goes far to prove that the brochs, with
which we shall deal later on, existed in Roman times.[8]

As the Romans never occupied Sutherland or Caithness or even came near
their borders, their inhabitants were never disarmed or prevented
from the practice of war, and thus enfeebled like the more southerly

After the departure, in 410, of the Romans, St. Ninian sent his
missionaries over Pictland, but darkness broods over its history
thenceforward for a hundred and fifty years. Picts, Scots of Ireland,
Angles and Saxons swarmed southwards, eastwards, and westwards
respectively into England, and ruined Romano-British civilisation,
which the Britons, unskilled in arms, were powerless to defend, as the
lamentations of Gildas abundantly attest.

In 563 Columba, the Irish soldier prince and missionary, whose Life
by Adamnan still survives,[9] landed in Argyll from Ulster, introduced
another form of Christian worship, also, like the Pictish, "without
reference to the Church of Rome," and from his base in Iona not only
preached and sent preachers to the north-western and northern Picts,
but in some measure brought among them the higher civilisation then
prevailing in Ireland. About the same time Kentigern, or St. Mungo,
a Briton of Wales, carried on missionary work in Strathclyde and in
Pictland, and even, it is said, sent preachers to Orkney.

In the beginning of the seventh century King Aethelfrith of
Northumbria had cut the people of the Britons, who held the whole of
west Britain from Devon to the Clyde, into two, the northern portion
becoming the Britons of Strathclyde; and the same king defeated Aidan,
king of the Scots of Argyll, at Degsastan near Jedburgh, though Aidan
survived, and, with the help of Columba, re-established the power of
the Scots in Argyll.

About the year 664, the wars in the south with Northumbria resulted in
the introduction by its king Oswy into south Pictland of the Catholic
instead of the Columban Church, a change which Nechtan, king of the
Southern Picts, afterwards confirmed, and which long afterwards led
to the abandonment throughout Scotland of the Pictish and Columban
systems, and to the adoption in their place of the wider and broader
culture, and the politically superior organisation and stricter
discipline of the Catholic Church, as new bishoprics were gradually
founded throughout Scotland by its successive kings.[10]

Meantime, during the centuries which elapsed before the Catholic
Church reached the extreme north of Scotland, the Pictish and Columban
churches held the field, as rivals, there, and probably never wholly
perished in Norse times even in Caithness and Sutherland.

During these centuries there were constant wars among the Picts
themselves, and later between them and the Scots, resulting,
generally, in the Picts being driven eastward and northward from
the south centre of Alban, which the Scots seized, into the Grampian

After this very brief statement of previous history we may now attempt
to give some description of the land and the people of Caithness and
Sutherland as the Northmen found them in the ninth century.


_The Pict and the Northman._

The present counties of Caithness and Sutherland A together made up
the old Province of Cait or Cat, so called after the name of one
of the seven legendary sons of _Cruithne_, the eponymous hero who
represented the Picts of Alban, as the whole mainland north of the
Forth was then called, and whose seven sons' names were said to stand
for its seven main divisions,[1] _Cait_ for Caithness and Sutherland,
_Ce_ for Keith or Mar, _Cirig_ for Magh-Circinn or Mearns, _Fib_ for
Fife, _Fidach_ (Woody) for Moray, _Fotla_ for Ath-Fodla or Athol, and
_Fortrenn_ for Menteith.

Immediately to the south of Cat lay the great province of Moray
including Ross, and, in the extreme west, a part of north Argyll; and
the boundary between Cat and Ross was approximately the tidal River
Oykel, called by the Norse Ekkjal, the northern and perhaps also the
southern bank of which probably formed the ranges of hills known in
the time of the earliest Norse jarls as Ekkjals-bakki. Everywhere
else Cat was bounded by the open sea, of which the Norse soon became
masters, namely on the west by the Minch, on the north by the North
Atlantic and Pentland Firth, and on the east and south by the North
Sea; and the great valley of the Oykel and the Dornoch Firth made Cat
almost into an island.

Like Cæsar's Gaul, Cat was "divided into three parts"; first, _Ness_,
which was co-extensive with the modern county of Caithness, a treeless
land, excellent in crops and highly cultivated in the north-east, but
elsewhere mainly made up of peat mosses, flagstones and flatness, save
in its western and south-western borderland of hills; secondly, to
the west of Ness, _Strathnavern_, a land of dales and hills, and,
especially in its western parts, of peaks; and, thirdly, to the south
of Strathnavern, _Sudrland_, or the Southland, a riviera of pastoral
links and fertile ploughland, sheltered on the north by its own
forests and hills, and sloping, throughout its whole length from
the Oykel to the Ord of Caithness, towards the _Breithisjorthr_,
Broadfjord, or Moray Firth, its southern sea.[2]

Save in north-east Ness, and in favoured spots elsewhere, also below
the 500 feet level, the land of Cat was a land of heath and woods[3]
and rocks, studded, especially in the west, with lochs abounding in
trout, a vast area of rolling moors, intersected by spacious straths,
each with its salmon river, a land of solitary silences, where red
deer and elk abounded, and in which the wild boar and wolf ranged
freely, the last wolf being killed in Glen Loth within twelve miles
of Dunrobin at a date between 1690 and 1700.[4] No race of hunters or
fishermen ever surpassed the Picts in their craft as such.

The land, especially Sutherland, is still a happy hunting-ground not
only for the sportsman but also for the antiquary. For the modern
County of Sutherland is outwardly much the same now as it was in
Pictish times, save for road and rail, two castles, and a sprinkling
of shooting lodges, inns, and good cottages, which, however, in so
vast a territory are, as the Irishman put it, "mere fleabites on the
ocean." Much of the west of the land of Cat was scarcely inhabited at
all in Pictish or Viking days, because as is clearly the case in the
Kerrow-Garrow or Rough Quarter of Eddrachilles, it would not carry
one sheep or feed one human being per hundred acres in many parts. The
rest of it also remains practically unchanged in appearance from the
earliest days till the present time, as it has been little disturbed
by the plough save in the north-east of Ness and at Lairg and
Kinbrace, and in its lower levels along the coast. But Loch Fleet no
longer reaches to Pittentrail, and the crooked bay at Crakaig has been
drained and the Water of Loth sent straight to the sea.

The only buildings or structures existing in Cat in Pictish and early
Norse times were a few vitrified forts, some underground erde-houses,
hut-circles innumerable, and perhaps a hundred and fifty brochs, or
Pictish towers as they are popularly called, which had been erected at
various dates from the first century onwards, long before the advent
of the Norse Vikings is on record, as defences against wolves and
raiders both by land and sea, and especially by sea. Notwithstanding
agricultural operations, foundations of 145 brochs can still be traced
in Ness and 67 in Strathnavern and Sudrland, but they were not all in
use at the same time, and they are mostly on sites taken over later
on by the Norse,[5] because they were already cultivated and
agriculturally the best.

A well-known authority on such subjects, the late Dr. Munro, in his
_Prehistoric Scotland_ p. 389 writes of the brochs as follows:--"Some
four hundred might have been seen conspicuously dotting the more
fertile lands along the shores and straths of the counties of
Caithness, Sutherland, Ross, Inverness, Argyll, the islands of
Orkney, Shetland, Bute, and some of the Hebrides. Two are found
in Forfarshire, and one each in the counties of Perth, Stirling,
Midlothian, Selkirk and Berwick."

If one may venture to hazard a conjecture as to their date, they
probably came into general use in these parts of Caledonia as nearly
as possible contemporaneously with the date of the Roman occupation
of South Britain, which they outlasted for many centuries. But their
erection was not due to the fear of attack by the armies of Rome. For
their remains are found where the Romans never came, and where the
Romans came almost none are found. Their construction is more probably
to be ascribed to very early unrecorded maritime raids of pirates of
unknown race both on regions far north of the eastern coast protected
later by the Count of the Saxon shore, and on the northern and western
islands and coasts, where also many ruins of them survive.

In Cat dwelt the Pecht or Pict, the Brugaidh or farmer in his dun or
broch, erected always on or near well selected fertile land on the
seaboard, on the sides of straths, or on the shores of lochs, or
less frequently on islands near their shores and then approached by
causeways;[6] and the rest of the people lived in huts whose circular
foundations still remain, and are found in large numbers at much
higher elevations than the sites of any brochs. The brochs near the
sea-coast were often so placed as to communicate with each other for
long distances up the valleys, by signal by day, and beacon fire at
night, and so far as they are traceable, the positions of most of them
in Sutherland and Caithness are indicated on the map by circles.

Built invariably solely of stone and without mortar, in form the
brochs were circular, and have been described as truncated cones
with the apex cut off,[7] and their general plan and elevation were
everywhere almost uniform. The ground floor was solid masonry, but
contained small chambers in its thickness of about 15 feet. Above the
ground floor the broch consisted of two concentric walls about three
feet apart, the whole rising to a height in the larger towers of 45
feet or more, with slabs of stone laid horizontally across the gap
between and within the two walls, at intervals of, say, five or six
feet up to the top, and thus forming a series of galleries inside
the concentric walls, in which large numbers of human beings could be
temporarily sheltered and supplies in great quantities could be stored
for a siege. These galleries were approached from within the broch by
a staircase which rose from the court and passed round between the two
concentric walls above the ground floor, till it reached their highest
point, and probably ended immediately above the only entrance, the
outside of which was thus peculiarly exposed to missiles from the end
of the staircase at the top of the broch. The only aperture in the
outer wall was the entrance from the outside, about 5 feet high by 3
feet wide, fitted with a stone door, and protected by guard-chambers
immediately within it, and it afforded the sole means of ingress to
and egress from the interior court, for man and beast and goods and
chattels alike. The circular court, which was formed inside, varied
from 20 to 36 feet in diameter, and was not roofed over; and the
galleries and stairs were lighted only by slits, all looking into the
court, in which, being without a roof, fires could be lit. In some few
there were wells, but water-supply, save when the broch was in a loch,
must have been a difficulty in most cases during a prolonged siege.

In these brochs the farmer lived, and his women-kind span and wove and
plied their querns or hand-mills, and, in raids, they shut themselves
up, and possibly some of their poorer neighbours took refuge in the
brochs, deserting their huts and crowding into the broch; but of this
practice there is no evidence, and the nearest hut-circles are often
far from the remains of any broch.

For defence the broch was as nearly as possible perfect against any
engines or weapons then available for attacking it; and we may note
that it existed in Scotland and mainly in the north and west of it,
and nowhere else in the world.[8] It was a roofless block-house, aptly
described by Dr. Joseph Anderson as a "safe." It could not be battered
down or set on fire, and if an enemy got inside it, he would find
himself in a sort of trap surrounded by the defenders of the broch,
and a mark for their missiles. The broch, too, was quite distinct from
the lofty, narrow ecclesiastical round tower, of which examples still
are found in Ireland, and in Scotland at Brechin and Abernethy.

To resist invasion the Picts would be armed with spears, short swords
and dirks, but, save perhaps a targe, were without defensive body
armour, which they scorned to use in battle, preferring to fight
stripped. They belonged to septs and clans, and each sept would have
its Maor, and each clan or province its Maormor[9] or big chief,
succession being derived through females, a custom which no doubt
originated in remote pre-Christian ages when the paternity of children
was uncertain.

Being Celts, the Picts would shun the open sea. They feared it, for
they had no chance on it, as their vessels were often merely hides
stretched on wattles, resembling enlarged coracles. Yet with such
rude ships as they had, they reached Orkney, Shetland, the Faroes and
Iceland as hermits or missionaries.[10] In Norse times they never
had the mastery of the sea, and the Pictish navy is a myth of earlier

Lastly, as we have seen, the Picts of Cat had never been conquered,
nor had their land ever been occupied by the legions of Rome, which
had stopped at the furthest in Moray; and the sole traces of Rome in
Cat are, as stated, two plates of hammered brass found in a Sutherland
broch, and some Samian ware. Further, Christian though he had been
long before Viking times, the Pict of Cat derived his Christianity
at first and chiefly from the Pictish missions, and later from
the Columban Church, both without reference to Papal Rome; and his
missionaries not only settled on islands off his coasts, but later on
worshipped in his small churches on the mainland; and many a Pictish
saint of holy life was held in reverence there.

About the eighth century and probably earlier, immigrants from the
southern shores of the Baltic pressed the Norse westwards in Norway,
and later on over-population in the sterile lands which lie along
Norway's western shores, drove its inhabitants forth from its western
fjords north of Stavanger and from The Vik or great bay of the
Christiania Fjord, whence they may have derived their name of Vikings,
across the North Sea to the opposite coasts of Shetland, Orkney and
Cat, where they found oxen and sheep to slaughter on the nesses or
headlands, and stores of grain, and some silver and even gold in the
shrines and on the persons of those whom they attacked, and in
still later days they sought new lands over the sea and permanent
settlements, where they would have no scat to pay to any overlord or
feudal superior.

When the Vikings landed, superior discipline, instilled into them by
their training on board ship, superior arms, the long two-handed sword
and the spear and battle-axe and their deadly bows and arrows, and
superior defensive armour, the long shield, the helmet and chain-mail,
would make them more than a match for their adversaries.[12] Above
all, the greater ferocity of these Northmen, ruthlessly directed to
its object by brains of the highest order, would render the Pictish
farmer, who had wife and children, and home and cattle and crops to
save, an easy prey to the Viking warrior bands, and the security of
his broch would of itself tend to a passive and inactive, rather than
an offensive, and therefore successful defence.

After long continued raids, the Vikings no doubt saw that much of the
land along the shore was fair and fertile compared with their own, and
finally they came not merely to plunder and depart, but to settle and
stay. When they did so, they came in large numbers and with organised
forces[13] and carefully prepared plans of campaign, and with great
reserves of weapons on board their ships; and having the ocean as
their highway, they could select their points of attack. They then, as
we know from the localities which bear their place-names, cleared out
the Pict from most of his brochs and from the best land in Cat, shown
on the map by dark green colour, that is, from all cultivated land
below the 500 feet level save the upper parts of the valleys; or they
slew or enslaved the Pict who remained. Lastly, on settling, they
would seize his women-kind and wed them; for the women of their own
race were not allowed on Viking ships, and were probably less amenable
and less charming to boot. But the Pictish women thus seized had their
revenge. The darker race prevailed, and, the supply of fathers of
pure Norse blood being renewed only at intervals, the children of
such unions soon came to be mainly of Celtic strain, and their mothers
doubtless taught them to speak the Gaelic, which had then for at least
a century superseded the Pictish tongue. The result was a mixed race
of Gall-gaels or Gaelic strangers, far more Celtic than Norse, who
soon spoke chiefly Gaelic, save in north-east Ness. Their Gaelic, too,
like the English of Shetland at the present time, would not only be
full of old Norse words, especially for things relating to the sea,
but be spoken with a slight foreign accent. How numerous those foreign
words still are in Sutherland Gaelic, the late Mr. George Henderson
has ably and elaborately proved in his scholarly book on "Norse
Influence on Celtic Scotland." We find traces of Norse words and the
Norse accent and inflexions also on the Moray seaboard, on which
the Norse gained a hold. The same would be true of the people on the
western lands and islands of the Hebrides.

As time went on, the Gaelic strain predominated more and more,
especially on the mainland of Scotland, over the Gall, or foreign,
strain, which was not maintained. Mr. A.W. Johnston, in his "_Orkney
and Shetland Folk--850 to 1350_,"[14] has worked out the quarterings
of the Norse jarls, of whom only the first three were pure Norsemen,
and he has thus shown conclusively how very Celtic they had become
long before their male line failed. The same process was at work,
probably to a greater extent, among those of lower rank, who could
not find or import Norse wives, if they would, as the jarls frequently

One or two other introductory points remain to be noted and borne in
mind throughout.

We must beware of thinking that all the land in an earldom such as Cat
was the absolute property of the chief, as in the nineteenth century,
or the latter half of it, was practically true in the modern county
of Sutherland. The fact was very much otherwise. The Maormor and
afterwards the earl doubtless had demesne lands, but he was in early
times, _ex officio_, mainly a superior and receiver of dues for his
king;[15] and this possibly shows why very early Scottish earldoms, as
for instance that of Sutherland, in the absence of male heirs, often
descended to females, unless the grant or custom excluded them. It
was quite different with later feudal baronies or tenancies, where
military service, which only males could render, was due, and which
with rare exceptions it was, after about 1130, the policy of the
Scottish kings to create; and in the case of baronies or lordships the
land itself was often described and given to the grantee and his heirs
by metes and bounds, in return for specified military service, and his
heirs male were exhausted before any female could inherit.

In Ness and in the rest of Cat there were many Norse and native
holders of land within the earldom, and much tribal ownership. Duncan
of Duncansby or Dungall of Dungallsby, as he is variously called,
allowed part at least of his dominions to pass by marriage to the
Norse jarls; but both Moddan and Earl Ottar, whose heir was Earl
Erlend Haraldson, who left no heir, owned land extensively in Ness and
elsewhere, while Moddan "in Dale" had daughters also owning land, one
of whom, Frakark, widow of Liot Nidingr, had many homesteads in upper
Kildonan in Sudrland and elsewhere, and possibly it is her sister
Helga's name that lingers in a place-name lower down that strath near
Helmsdale, at Helgarie.

What is worthy of notice is that it is clear from the place-names that
after the Norse conquest the Norse held and named most of the lower or
seaward parts of the valleys and nearly all the coast lands of Cat and
Ross as far south as the Beauly Firth, and the Picts occupied and were
never dispossessed of the upper parts of the valleys or the hills all
through the Norse occupation. In other words, as conquerors coming
from the sea, the Norsemen seized and held the better Pictish lands
near the coast, which had been cultivated for centuries, and on which
crops would ripen with regularity and certainty year after year. But
as time went on the Pictish Maormor pressed the Norse Jarl more and
more outwards and eastwards in Cat.

We must also remember the enormous power of the Scottish Crown through
its right of granting wardships, especially in the case of a female
heir. Under such grants the grantee, usually some very powerful noble,
took over during minority the title of his ward and all his revenues
absolutely, in return for a payment, correspondingly large, to the
Crown. If the ward was a female, the grantee disposed of her hand in
marriage as well.

After these preliminary notes, we may now again glance at the Scots,
who were destined, from small beginnings, by a series of strange turns
of fortune and superior state-craft, in time to conquer and dominate
all modern Scotland north of the Forth, then known as Alban.

The Scots, as already stated, had come over from Ulster and settled in
Cantyre about the end of the fifth century, and for long they had only
the small Dalriadic territory of Argyll, and even this they all but
lost more than once. At the same time, after 563, they had a most
valuable asset in Columba, their soldier missionary prince, and his
_milites Christi_, or soldiers of Christ, who gradually carried their
Christianity and Irish culture even up to Orkney itself, with many a
school of the Erse or Gaelic tongue, and thus paved the way for
the consolidation of the whole of Alban into one political unit by
providing its people with a common language.

But in order to live the Scots had been forced to defeat many foes,
such as the Britons of Strathclyde, whose capital was at Alcluyd
or Dunbarton,[16] the Northumbrians on the south, and the Picts of
Atholl, Forfar, Fife and Kincardine, which comprised most of the
fertile land south of the Grampians. The great Pictish province of
Moray on the north of the Grampians, however, remained unsubdued, and
it took the Scots several centuries more to reduce it.

It was when the Scottish conquests above referred to were thus far
completed that the new factor, with which we are mainly concerned,
was introduced into the problem. This factor was, as stated, _the


_The Early Norse Jarls._

It was in the reign of Constantine I, son of the great Pictish king,
Angus MacFergus, that the new and disturbing influence mentioned above
appeared in force in Alban. Favoured in their voyages to and fro by
the prevailing winds, which then, as now, blew from the east in
the spring and from the west later in the year, the Northmen,
both Norsemen and Danes, neither being Christians, had, like their
predecessors the Saxons and Angles and Frisians, for some time made
trading voyages and desultory piratical attacks in summer-time on
the coasts of Britain and Ireland, and probably many a short-lived
settlement as well. But as these attacks and settlements are
unrecorded in Cat, no account of them can be given.

In 793 it is on record that the Vikings first sacked Iona, originally
the centre of Columban Christianity but then Romanised, and they
repeated these raids on its shrine again and again within the next
fifteen years. Constantine thereupon removed its clergy to Dunkeld,
"and there set up in his own kingdom an ecclesiastical capital for
Scots and Picts alike,"[1] as a step towards the political union
of his realm, which Norse sea-power had completely severed from the
original home of the Scots in Ulster.

The Northmen now began the systematic maritime invasions of our
eastern and northern and western coasts and islands, which history has
recorded. North Scotland was attacked almost exclusively by Norsemen,
and Norsemen and Danes invaded Ireland. The Danes seized the south of
Scotland, and the north of England, of which latter country, early in
the eleventh century in the time of King Knut, they were destined to
dominate two-thirds, while Old Norse became the _lingua franca_ of
his English kingdom, and enriched its language with hundreds of Norse
words, and gave us many new place and personal names.

In 844, Kenneth, king of the Scots, the small North Irish sept which,
as stated above, had crossed over from Erin and held the Dalriadic
kingdom of Argyll with its capital at Dunadd near the modern Crinan
Canal, succeeded in making good his title, on his mother's side, to
the Pictish crown by a successful attack from the west on the southern
Picts[2] at the same time as their territory was being invaded from
the east coast by the Danes. Thereafter, these Picts and the Scots
gradually became and ever afterwards remained one nation, a course
which suited both peoples as a safeguard not only against their
foreign foes the Northmen, but also against the Berenicians of Lothian
on the south. With the object of ensuring the union of the two peoples
Kenneth is said to have transferred some of the relics of Columba, who
had become the patron saint of both, from Iona to Dunkeld, which thus
definitely remained not only the ecclesiastical capital of the united
Picts and Scots, but the common centre of their religious sentiment
and veneration. Incidentally, too, the Pictish language gradually
became disused, as that people were absorbed in the Scots; and
unfortunately, through the fact that no written literature survived to
preserve it, that language has almost entirely disappeared. The better
opinion is that it was more closely akin to Welsh and Breton than to
Erse or Gaelic, the Welsh and the Picts being termed "P" Celts, and
the other races "Q" Celts, because in words of the same meaning the
Welsh used "P" where the Gaelic speaking Celt used the hard "C". For
instance, "Pen" and "Map" in Welsh became "Ken" (or Ceann) and "Mac"
in Gaelic.[3]

In the reign of Constantine II, Kenneth's son and next successor but
one, further incursions by the Northmen took place under King Olaf
the White of Dublin in 867 and 871; while in 875 his son Thorstein the
Red, by Aud "the deeply-wealthy" or "deeply-wise," landed on the north
coast, and, we are told, seized "Caithness and Sutherland and Moray
and more than half Scotland,"[4] being killed, however, by treachery
within the year. His mother Aud thereupon built a ship in Caithness,
and sailed for the Faroes and Iceland with her retinue and
possessions, marrying off two grand-daughters on the way, one, called
Groa, to Duncan, Maormor of Duncansby in Caithness, the most ancient
Pictish chief of whom we hear in that district, and probably ancestor
of the Moldan, or Moddan, line in Cat. Two years later, in 877, King
Constantine was defeated by a force of Danes at Dollar, and slain by
them at Forgan in Fife.[5]

After the great decisive battle of Hafrsfjord in Norway in 872,
because Orkney and Shetland and the Hebrides had become refuges for
the Norse Vikings, who had been expelled from their country or had
left it on the introduction of feudalism with its payment of dues
to the king, but were raiding its shores, Harald Harfagr,[6] king of
Norway, along with Jarl Ragnvald of Maeri attacked and extirpated the
pirate Vikings in their island lairs; and, as compensation to the
jarl for the loss of his son Ivar in battle, Harald transferred his
conquests with the title of Jarl of Orkney and Shetland to Ragnvald,
who, in his turn, with the king's consent, soon made over his new
territories and title to his brother Sigurd.

This new jarl, the second founder of the line of Orkney jarls,
conquered Caithness and Sutherland as far south as Ekkjals-bakki,[7]
which is believed by some to be in Moray, and by others, with more
truth, to be the ranges of hills in Sutherland and Ross lying to the
north and to the south of the River Oykel and its estuary, the Dornoch
Firth; and the second part of the name still happens to survive in the
place-name of Backies in Dunrobin Glen and elsewhere in Cat where the
Norse settled. About the year 890,[8] after challenging Malbrigde
of the Buck-tooth to a fight with forty a side, to which he himself
perfidiously brought eighty men, Sigurd outflanked and defeated his
adversary, and cut off his head and suspended it from his saddle; but
the buck-tooth, by chafing his leg as he rode away from the field,
caused inflammation and death, and Jarl Sigurd's body was laid in howe
on Oykel's Bank at Sigurthar-haugr, or Sigurds-haugr, the Siwards-hoch
of early charters now on modern maps corruptly written Sidera or
Cyderhall, near Dornoch, which, when translated, is Sigurd's Howe.[9]
"Thenceforward," as Professor Hume Brown tells us, "the mainland
was never secure from the attacks of successive jarls, who for long
periods held firm possession of what is now Caithness and Sutherland.
As things now went, this was in truth in the interest of the kings of
Scots themselves. To the north of the Grampians they exercised little
or no authority; and the people of that district were as often their
enemies as their friends. Through the action of the Orkney jarls,
therefore, the Scottish kings were at comparative liberty to extend
their territory towards the south; and the day came when they found
themselves able to crush every hostile element even in the north.[10]

It is this process of consolidation in the north which it is proposed
to describe so far as Sutherland and Caithness are concerned, using
both Norse and Scottish records, and piecing them together as best
we can, and, be it confessed, in many cases filling up great gaps by
necessary guess-work when records fail.

In the reign of the great king Constantine III, between the years 900
and 942, the Danes again gave trouble. In 903 the Irish Danes ravaged
Alban,[11] as Scotland north of the Forth was then called, for a
whole year; in 918 Constantine and his ally, Eldred of Lothian, were
defeated by another expedition of these invaders; and in 934 Athelstan
and his Saxons burst into Strathclyde and Forfar, the heart of
Constantine's kingdom, and the Saxon fleet was sent up even to the
shores of Caithness, as a naval demonstration intended to brave the
Norse, who had joined Constantine, on their own element. Lastly, in
937 Athelstan and Constantine met at Brunanburg, probably Birrenswark
near Ecclefechan, and Constantine and his Norse allies were completely

Meantime, since 875, a succession of jarls had endeavoured to hold,
for the kings of Norway, Orkney and Shetland, as well as Cat, which
then included Ness, Strathnavern, and Sudrland.[13] The history of
these early jarls is not told in detail in any surviving contemporary
record, for the Sagas of the jarls as individuals have perished; but
there is a brief account of them in the beginning of the _Orkneyinga
Saga_, another in chapters 99 and 100 of the _St. Olaf's Saga_, and a
fuller one in chapters 179 to 187 of the _Saga of Olaf Tryggvi's Son_,
contained in the _Flatey Book_.[14] From these the following story may
be gathered.

After Jarl Sigurd's death, his son Guthorm ruled for one winter, and
died without issue, so that Sigurd's line came to an end. When Jarl
Ragnvald of Maeri heard of his nephew's death, he sent his son Hallad
over from Norway to Hrossey, as the mainland of Orkney was then
called, and King Harald gave him the title of jarl. Failing in his
efforts to put down the piracy of the Vikings, who continued their
slayings and plunderings, Hallad, the last of the purely Norse jarls,
resigned his jarldom, and returned ignominiously to Norway. In the
absence at war of Hrolf the Ganger, who became Duke of Normandy and
was an ancestor of the kings of England, two others of Ragnvald's
sons, Thorir and Hrollaug, were summoned to meet their father. At
this meeting it was decided that neither of these should go to Orkney,
Thorir's prospects in Norway being good, and Hrollaug's future lying
in Iceland, where, it was said, he was to found a great family. Then
Einar, the Jarl's youngest son by a thrall or slave woman, and thus
not of pure Norse lineage, asked whether he might go, offering as an
inducement to his father that, if he went, he would thus never be seen
by him again. He was told that the sooner he went, and the longer he
stayed away, the better his father would be pleased. A galley, well
equipped, was given to him, and about the year 891 King Harald Harfagr
conferred on him the title of Jarl of Orkney and Shetland, for which
he sailed. On his arrival there, he attacked Kalf Skurfa and Thorir
Treskegg,[15] the pirate Viking leaders, and defeated and slew them
both. He then took possession of the lands of the jarldom; and, from
having taught the people of Turfness in Moray the use of turf or peat
for fuel, was known thenceforward as Torf-Einar. He is said to have
been "a tall man, ugly, with one eye, but very keen-sighted,"[16] a
faculty which he was soon to use.

When Jarl Ragnvald of Maeri, the first of the Orkney jarls, was killed
in Norway by two of Harald Harfagr's sons, one of them, Halfdan Halegg
or Long-shanks fled from their father's vengeance to Orkney. When
Halfdan landed, Torf-Einar took refuge in Scotland, but returned in
force, and after defeating Halfdan--who had usurped the jarldom--in
North Ronaldsay Firth, spied him as a fugitive, in hiding, far off on
Rinarsey or Rinansey (Ninian's Island) now North Ronaldsay, and seized
him, cut a blood-eagle on his back, severed his ribs and pulled out
his lungs, and, after offering him as a victim to Odin, buried his
body there.[17]

Incensed at the shameful slaughter of his son, Harald Harfagr came
over from Norway about the year 900 to avenge him, but, as was then
not unusual, accepted as a wergeld or atonement for his son's death a
fine of sixty marks of gold, which it fell to the islanders to pay. On
their failure to find the money, Torf-Einar paid it himself, taking in
return from the people their odal lands,[18] which were lost to their
families until Jarl Sigurd Hlodverson temporarily restored them as a
recompense for their assistance in the battle fought by him between
969 and 995 against Finleac MacRuari, Maormor of North Moray, at
Skidamyre in Caithness. Whether it was the Orkney jarls or their
superiors, the kings of Norway, who owned them in the meantime, the
odal lands were finally sold back to those entitled to them by descent
by Jarl Ragnvald Kol's son about 1137, in order to raise money for the
completion of Kirkwall Cathedral. Odal tenure in Orkney was thus in
abeyance for over two centuries, save for a short time, and in any
case its inherent principle of subdivision would have killed it, and
after its renewal, in spite of its many safeguards against alienation
to strangers, it gradually died out under feudalism and Scottish law
and lawyers.[19] In Cat it never seems to have taken root.

After holding the jarldom for a long term, Torf-Einar died in his bed,
as the Saga contemptuously tells us, probably in or after the year
920, leaving three sons, Arnkell, Erlend, and Thorfinn Hausa-kliufr or
Skull-splitter, of whom the two first, Arnkell and Erlend, fell with
Eric Bloody-axe, king of Norway, in England. The third son, Thorfinn
Hausa-kliufr or Skull-splitter, himself about three-quarters Norse
by blood, married Grelaud, daughter of Dungadr, or Duncan, the Gaelic
Maormor of Caithness by Groa, daughter of Thorfinn the Red, thus
further Gaelicising the strain of the Norse Jarls of Orkney,[20] but
adding greatly to their mainland territories.

Jarl Thorfinn Hausa-kliufr, who flourished between 920 and 963, is
described as a great chief and fighter; but he, like his father,
died a peaceful death, and was buried at Hoxa, Haugs-eithi or
Mound's-isthmus, which covers the site of a Pictish broch, near the
north-west end of South Ronaldshay.[21]

When Eric Bloody-axe had been defeated and killed, his sons came to
Orkney and seized the jarldom, and his widow, the notoriously wicked
Gunnhild and her daughter Ragnhild settled there for a time. Thorfinn
Hausa-kliufr had five sons, Arnfinn, Havard, Hlodver, Ljotr and
Skuli. Three of these, Arnfinn. Havard and Ljotr, successively married
Ragnhild, and Ragnhild rivalled her mother in wickedness. Arnfinn she
killed at Murkle in Caithness with her own hand; Havard she induced
Einar Oily-tongue, his nephew, to slay, on her promise to marry him,
which she broke; and finally she married Jarl Ljotr instead. Skuli,
the only other surviving son save Hlodver, went to the king of Scots,
who is said to have lightly given away what did not belong to him,
and to have created him Earl of Caithness, which then included
Sudrland.[22] Skuli then raised a force in his new earldom, no doubt
to carry out Scottish policy, and, crossing to Orkney, fought a battle
there with his brother Ljotr, was defeated, and fled to Caithness.
Collecting another army in Scotland, Skuli fought a second battle at
Dalar or Dalr, probably Dale in the upper valley of the Thurso River
in Caithness, and was there defeated and killed by Ljotr, who took
possession of his dominions. Then followed a battle between Ljotr and
a Scottish earl called Magbiod or Macbeth, at Skida Myre or Skitten
Moor in Watten in Caithness, which Ljotr won, but died of his wounds
shortly after, and is said to have been buried at Stenhouse in
Watten.[23] Thus the first Scottish attempt at consolidation of the
north failed.

During the last half of the tenth century there was constant war by
the kings of Alban against the Northmen who had seized the coast of
Moray, and Malcolm I was killed at Ulern near Kinloss, about the year
954, and his successor Indulf fell in the hour of his victory over the
invaders at Cullen in Banff.[24] But on the whole probably the Scots
had succeeded for a time in driving out the Norse from the laigh of
Moray, which the latter needed for its supplies of grain.

Hlodver or Lewis, (963-980), the only surviving son of Thorfinn
Hausa-kliufr, succeeded Ljotr in the jarldom; and by Audna or Edna,
daughter of Kiarval, king of the Hy Ivar of Dublin and Limerick,
Hlodver had a son, the famous Sigurd the Stout, or Sigurd Hlodverson.
Hlodver was, (as Mr. A.W. Johnston points out),[25] by blood slightly
more Norse than Gaelic. We know little of him save that he was a
mighty chief; and, according to the usual reproach of the Saga,
died in his bed and not in battle about 980, and was buried at Hofn,
probably Huna, in Caithness, near John o' Groats, under a howe.[26]

The line of the so-called Norse earls, at the period at which we have
arrived, 980 A.D., was represented by Sigurd Hlodverson, the hero of
the Raven banner, which, as his Irish mother had predicted, was to
bring victory to every host which followed it, but death to every man
who bore it in battle.[27] Sigurd claimed Caithness by the rules
of Pictish succession, as grandson of Grelaud daughter of Duncan of
Duncansby, Maormor of that district. This claim was disputed by
two Celtic chiefs, Hundi (possibly Crinan, Abthane of Dunkeld) and
Melsnati, or Maelsnechtan; and in a battle at Dungal's Noep, near
Duncansby, at which Kari Solmundarson is said in the _Saga of Burnt
Njal_[28] to have been present, Sigurd defeated them, but with
such loss to his own side that he had to retire to Orkney, leaving
Hundi,[29] the survivor of his two enemies, in possession of his lands
in Caithness. Sigurd himself, on his voyage from Orkney, fell into the
hands of the Norse king, Olaf Tryggvi's-son, who was returning from
Dublin to Norway, in the bay of Osmundwall or Kirk Hope in Walls;
and the king insisted on the jarl being baptized on the spot, under
penalty, if he and all the inhabitants of his jarldom did not become
and remain Christians, of losing his eldest son Hundi or Hvelpr,
whom the Norse king seized and retained as a hostage. He also sent
missionaries to evangelize the jarldom. Such was the conversion of
Orkney and its jarl from the worship of Odin, at or about the end of
the first millennium of the Christian era.

On his son's death in captivity, Sigurd seems to have deserted the
Norse for the Scottish side, and to have devoted himself to seeking
the favour, by his assistance in completing the conquest of Moray from
the Norse, of the Scottish king Malcolm II, whose third daughter he
married as his second wife.[30] He was, by race, more than two-thirds
Gaelic, and he clearly at first held Caithness in spite of all
Scottish attacks, and probably later on agreed to hold it from the
Scottish king.

A few other persons are referred to in the Sagas as connected with
Caithness at this time. In the Landnamabok (1.6.5) we find Swart Kell,
or Cathal Dhu, mentioned as having gone from Caithness and taken
land in settlement in Mydalr in Iceland, and his son was Thorkel, the
father of Glum, who took Christendom when he was already old.

About this time also, as appears from the _Saga of Thorgisl_,[31]
there was an Earl Anlaf or Olaf in Caithness, who had a sister, named
Gudrun, whom Swart Ironhead, a pirate, sought in marriage. But Swart
was killed in holmgang, or duel, by Thorgisl, who cut off his head
and married Gudrun, by whom he had a son called Thorlaf. Thorgisl then
tired of Gudrun, and gave her to Thorstan the White on the plea that
he himself wished to go and look after his estate in Iceland, which he
did. Can this Anlaf be the original of the legendary Alane, thane
of Sutherland, whom Macbeth, according to Sir Robert Gordon in his
_Genealogie of the Earles of Southerland_,[32] put to death, and whose
son, Walter, Malcolm Canmore is said to have created first Earl? Or
was Alane, like others, a creation of Sir Robert's inventive brain?
He was certainly no earl of the present Sutherland line; neither was

To this period also belongs the romantic story of Barth or Bard,
son of Helgi and Helga Ulfs-datter told in the _Flatey Book_, and
translated at page 369 of the Appendix to Sir George Dasent's Rolls
Edition of the _Orkneyinga Saga_, which is shortly as follows.

In the time of Sigurd Hlodverson, Ulf the Bad, of Sanday in Orkney,
murdered Harald of North Ronaldsay, and seized his lands in the
absence of Harald's son Helgi, a gentle Viking, on a cruise. On his
return, Helgi, to revenge his father's death, slew Bard, Ulf's next of
kin, in fight. Jarl Sigurd blames him for this and for not letting him
settle the feud himself, and Helgi sells all he has, and goes to Ulf's
house and takes his daughter, Helga, away. Ulf follows them up by
sea with a superior force, defeats Helgi off Caithness, and he
jumps overboard with Helga and swims to shore, where a poor farmer,
Thorfinn, as Helgi had always been kind in his "vikings" to such as he
was, has the wedding at his house, and shelters the pair there till
on Ulf's death two years after they can return to Orkney with Bard or
Barth, their infant son. At twelve years of age, Barth desires to fare
away "to those peoples who believe in the God of Heaven Himself," and
fares far away accordingly. Barth works for a farmer, and works so
well that his flocks increase, and gets a cow for himself as a reward,
but meets a beggar who begs the cow of him "for Peter's thanks." Each
year a cow is the reward of Barth's work, and each year he is asked
for the cow, and gives her up, until he has given three cows. Then
St. Peter (for the beggar was no other than he) passes his hands over
Barth, and gives him good luck, and sets a book upon his shoulders;
and he saw far and wide over many lands, and over all Ireland, and he
was baptized, and became a holy hermit and a bishop in Ireland. Such
is the Norse story of Barth, to whom the first Cathedral in Dornoch
was said to have been dedicated. It is far more prettily told in the

But St. Barr of Dornoch, in all probability, belongs to the sixth
century,[34] not to the tenth, and was a Pict or Irishman, not a
Norseman. He was never Bishop of Caithness, so far as records tell.
His Fair, like those of other Pictish Saints elsewhere in Cat, is
still celebrated, and is held at Dornoch.

The battle of Clontarf, fought on Good Friday, the 23rd of April 1014,
outside Dublin, between the young heathen king of Dublin, Sigtrigg
Silkbeard, and the aged Christian king, Brian Borumha, was,
notwithstanding Norse representations to the contrary, a decisive
victory for the Irish over the Norse, and for Christianity against
Odinism. Sigurd, Jarl of Orkney, though nominally a Christian, fought
on the heathen side, and fell bearing his Raven banner, and the old
king, Brian, was killed in the hour of his people's victory.

Sigurd's death is the subject of a strange legend, and the occasion
of a weird poem, _The Darratha-Liod_[35] said to have been sung in
Caithness for the first time on the day of Sigurd's death.

The legend is given in the _Niala_[36] as follows:--"On Friday it
happened in Caithness that a man called Dorruthr went out of his house
and saw that twelve men together rode to a certain bower, where they
all disappeared. He went to the bower, and looked in through a window,
and saw that within there were women, who had set up a web. They sang
the poem, calling on the listener, Dorruthr, to learn the song, and
to tell it to others. When the song was over, they tore down the web,
each one retaining what she held in her hand of it. And now Dorruthr
went away from the window and returned home, while they mounted their
horses, riding six to the north and six to the south. A similar vision
appeared to Brand, the son of Gneisti, in the Faroes. At Swinefell in
Iceland blood fell on the cope of a priest on Good Friday, so that he
had to take it off. At Thvatta a priest saw on Good Friday deep sea
before the altar and many terrible wonders therein, and for long he
was unable to sing the Hours."[37]

This strange legend of early telepathy may be explained by the fact
that Thorstein, son of the Icelander Hall o' Side, fought for Sigurd
at Clontarf, and afterwards returned to Iceland and told the story
of the battle, which the Saga preserved; and the English poet, Thomas
Gray, used it as the theme of his well-known poem intituled _The Fatal
Sisters_. The old Norse ballad referred to Sigurd's death at Clontarf
in 1014. It is known as _Darratha-Liod_ or _The Javelin-Song_, and is
translated by the late Eirikr Magnusson and printed in the _Miscellany
of the Viking Society_ with the Old Norse original[38] and the
translator's scholarly notes and explanations. It is said that it was
often sung in Old Norse in North Ronaldsay until the middle of the
eighteenth century.

As translated it is as follows:--


  Widely's warped
  To warn of slaughter
  The back-beam's rug--
  Lo, blood is raining!
  Now grey with spears
  Is framed the web
  Of human kind,
  With red woof filled
  By maiden friends
  Of Randver's slayer.

  That web is warped
  With human entrails,
  And is hard weighted
  With heads of people;
  Bloodstained darts
  Do for treadles,
  The forebeam's ironbound
  The reed's of arrows;
  Swords be sleys[39]
  For this web of war.

  Hild goes to weave
  And Hiorthrimol
  Sangrid and Svipol
  With swords unsheathed.
  Shafts will crack
  And shields will burst,
  The dog of helms
  Will drop on byrnies.

  Wind we, wind we
  Web of javelins
  Such as the young king
  Has waged before.
  Forward we go
  And rush to the fray,
  Where our friends
  Engage in fighting.

  Wind we, wind we
  Web of javelins
  Where forward rush
  The fighters' standards.
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

  Wind we, wind we
  Web of javelins,
  And faithfully
  The king we follow.
  Nor shall we leave
  His life to perish;
  Among the doomed
  Our choice is ample.

  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  There Gunn and Gondul
  Who guarded the king
  Saw borne by men
  Bloody targets.

  That race will now
  Rule the country
  Which erstwhile held
  But outer nesses.
  The mighty king,
  Meweens, is doomed.
  Now pierced by points
  The Earl hath fallen.

  Such bale will now
  Betide the Irish
  As ne'er grows old
  To minding men.
  The web's now woven
  The wold made red,
  Afar will travel
  The tale of woe.

  An awful sight
  The eye beholdeth
  As blood-red clouds
  Are borne through heaven;
  The skies take hue
  Of human blood,
  Whene'er fight-maidens
  Fall to singing.

  XI. Willing we chant
  Of the youthful king
  A lay of victory--
  Luck to our singing!
  But he who listens
  Must learn by heart
  This spear-maid's song
  And spread it further.

  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *
  On bare-backed steeds
  We start out swiftly
  With swords unsheathed
  From hence away.

The nine centuries, above referred to, of Roman invasion, intestine
war, and ecclesiastical rivalry between the Pictish, Columban and
Catholic Churches had now, under Malcolm II, produced a kingdom of
Scotland, throughout which the Catholic was in a fair way to become
the predominant Church, and in which the authority of the Scottish
Crown was for the time being, nominally, but in the north merely
nominally, supreme on the mainland from the Tweed to the Pentland
Firth. The Isles of Orkney and Shetland and the whole of the Sudreyar
or Hebrides, however, owed allegiance, whether their jarls admitted
it or not, to the Crown of Norway, and the Scottish kings had no
authority over them.[40] Moreover, the Northmen--Danes and Norsemen
and Gallgaels--held the western seas from the Butt of Lewis to the
Isle of Man, and they had severed the connection between the Scots
of Ulster and the Scots of Argyll. The latter had thus been forced to
move eastwards, in order to avoid constant raids by the Irish Danes
and Norsemen and the Gallgaels, who thus possessed themselves of all
the coast of Scotland then known as Airergaithel or Argyll, which
extended up to Ross and Assynt, west of the Drumalban watershed.

Of the next nine centuries from 1000 to the present time it is
proposed to deal with the first two hundred and seventy years only,
which, with the preceding century and a half, form a chapter of
Scottish history complete in itself. The narrative, as already stated,
will be based largely upon the great Stories or Tales known as the
_Orkneyinga, St. Magnus'_, and _Hakonar Sagas_, and also upon Scottish
and English chronicles and records so far as they throw their fitful
light upon the northern counties of Scotland, and especially upon
Caithness and Sutherland, during the dark periods between these Sagas.

Attention will have to be paid to the Pictish family of Moldan of
Duncansby, of Moddan, created Earl of Caithness by his uncle Duncan I,
and of Moddan "in Dale," each of whom in turn succeeded to much of
the estates of the ancient Maormors of Duncansby, but whose people had
been driven back from most of the best low-lying lands into the upper
valleys and the hills by the foreign invaders of Cat. For, when the
Norse Vikings first attacked Cat and succeeded in conquering the Picts
there, they conquered by no means the whole of that province. They
subdued and held only that part of Ness or modern Caithness which lies
next its north and east coasts, and the rest of the sea-board of Ness,
Strathnavern and Sudrland, forcing their way up the lower parts of
the valleys of these districts, as their place-names still live on to
prove; but they never conquered, so as to occupy and hold them, the
upper parts of these river basins or the hills above them, which
remained in possession of Picts and Gaels throughout the whole period
of the Norse occupation. Further, the Picts and Gaels extended the
area which they retained, until Norse rule was expelled from the
mainland altogether.

In Strathnavern and in the upper valleys of its rivers, and also in
Caithness in the uplands of the river Thurso, and in a large part of
Sudrland the Pictish family and clan of Moddan in its various branches
subsisted all through the Norse occupation, and it is hoped to show
good reason for believing that the family of Moddan, with the Pictish
or Scottish family of Freskyn de Moravia in later times, was the
mainstay of Scottish rule in the extreme north until the shadowy
claims of Norse suzerains over every part of the mainland were
completely repelled, and avowedly abandoned.

Meantime to Norway Orkney and Cat were essential. For their fertile
lands yielded the supplies of grain which Norway required; and when
the Norse were driven from the arable lands of the Moray seaboard,
Orkney and Cat became still more necessary to them and their folk at
home. Cat the Scots could not then reach, for the Norse held the sea,
while on land Pictish Moray, a jealous power, hostile to its southern
neighbours, lay in its mountain fastnesses between the territory of
the Scots in the south and the land of Cat in the extreme north, and
formed a barrier which stretched across Alban from the North Sea to
the shores of Assynt on the Skotlands-fiorthr or Minch.


_Thorfinn--Earl and Jarl._

Malcolm II, with whom Scottish contemporary records may be said to
begin, ascended the Scottish throne in 1005, and defeated the Norse at
Mortlach in Moray in 1010, and drove them from its fertile seaboard,
probably with the help of Sigurd Hlodverson, Jarl of Orkney. The men
of Moray, however, and their Pictish Maormors remained ungrateful, and
irreconcilably opposed to Scottish rule; and Moray, then stretching
across almost from ocean to ocean,[1] barred the way of the Scots to
the north.

What he could not achieve by arms, Malcolm, both before and after his
accession, decided to secure by a series of matrimonial alliances.
He had no son; but he had three available daughters,[2] of whom the
eldest was Bethoc, and the two others are said to have been called
Donada or Doada and Plantula.

1. _Bethoc_ he married to the most powerful Pictish leader of the
time, Crinan, Abthane of Dunkeld, the capital of the southern Picts,
and they had issue

(a) _Duncan_, afterwards Duncan I of Scotland, born about 1001;

(b) _Maldred_ of Cumbria, whose eldest son was Gospatrick, and whose
second son was Dolfin; but with Maldred we are not concerned;

(c) _A daughter_, who became the mother of Moddan, whom Duncan
I, after his accession in 1034, created Earl of Caithness or Cat,
probably about 1040, his father being possibly of the family of Moldan
of Duncansby, whose sons Gritgard and Snaekolf, if we may believe the
_Njal Saga_, were slain by Helgi Njal's son and Kari Solmundarson,
Moldan being said to be a kinsman of Malcolm the Scots king.

2. Malcolm's second daughter, _Donada_, he married to Finnleac or
Finlay Mac Ruari, Maormor of North Moray, and a chief of the northern
Picts, and they had a son, Macbeth, born about 1005, who succeeded
Duncan I on his death in 1040 as King of Scotland, but left no

3. Malcolm's third daughter, said to have been called _Plantula_, he
gave, about 1007, as his second wife to Sigurd Hlodverson, who, as we
have seen, was killed in 1014 at the decisive battle of Clontarf, his
wife having died probably before that event; and their only child was
a son, born about 1008 and created Earl of Caithness and Sutherland,
who became the great Earl and Jarl _Thorfinn_.

The three marriages were intended to secure to Malcolm the south,
the middle, and the north of Pictland through the fathers of Duncan,
Macbeth, and Thorfinn respectively; and we may note that from Thorfinn
are descended all subsequent Jarls and Earls of Orkney and Shetland
and Caithness of the so-called Norse line.

Duncan I, Macbeth, and Thorfinn Sigurd's son were thus first cousins,
and, in spite of the fiction of Holinshed, Boece, and William
Shakespeare, they were all about the same age, being born within seven
years of each other; and none of them lived to old age.

By the victory of Carham in 1018 Malcolm II secured for ever the line
of the Tweed as Scotland's southern frontier; and this success in the
south, one of the most important events in Scottish history, left
him free to extend his kingdom and sovereignty towards the north, his
object being to unite into one realm the whole mainland at least
of Scotland. To accomplish this, he would have to bring under the
supremacy of the Scottish crown in addition to the Picts of Atholl,
whom the Scots had absorbed, the Gallgaels of Argyll, the Picts of
Moray and of Ross within and beyond the Grampians, and those of
the province of Cat, with the Norsemen there as well. He could thus
ultimately hope to oust Somarled, Brusi and Einar, Jarl Sigurd's sons
by his first wife, and their overlords, the Norse kings, from Orkney
and Shetland, and to add those islands to his dominions. Meantime,
Somarled, Brusi and Einar took no share in Cat. Thorfinn had Cat, all
for himself, as a fief of the Scottish king.

Although the history of the time of Thorfinn Sigurdson, the first
Scottish Earl of Caithness and Sutherland,[4] would have been of
great interest to inhabitants of those counties, the _Orkneyinga Saga_
contains but little information about his doings in them, because he
bent all his efforts towards extending his dominion over the islands
which formed his father Sigurd's jarldom, his policy, in his youth at
least, being directed to this object by his grandfather, Malcolm
II. Indeed during the life of that king, Thorfinn appears to have
established himself at Duncansby in Caithness, on the shore of the
Pentland Firth, and to have occupied himself in endeavouring to induce
his three surviving half-brothers, Somarled, Brusi, and Einar, to part
with as large a share as possible of Orkney and Shetland, and cede
it to himself. In this he had much assistance from King Malcolm.
Thorfinn, whose mother probably died in his infancy if we are to
credit his father's matrimonial stipulations as regards an Irish wife
in 1014, succeeded to the earldom and lands in that year, as a boy of
about six years of age, and was early in coming to his full growth,
the "tallest and strongest of men; his hair was black, his features
sharp, his brows scowling, and, as soon as he grew up, it was easy to
see that he was forward and grasping." From the description given in
the Saga at Chapter 22, he was no more a Norseman in appearance than
he was by blood. He was, in fact, by race and descent, almost a pure
Gael, and at Malcolm's court must have spoken only Gaelic.

Of his three half-brothers, Somarled and Brusi were not unwilling to
give Thorfinn a share of the Orkney jarldom. For they were meek men,
especially Brusi; and, when Somarled died, though Einar wanted two
shares for himself, and fought to retain them, he only wearied out
his followers and alienated them by his cruelty. They, therefore, went
over to Thorfinn in Caithness. More important still, Thorkel
Amundson, "the properest young man in Orkney," did likewise, and was
thenceforward known as Thorkel Fostri, foster-father to Thorfinn, whom
he aided at every crisis of his career.

When Thorfinn grew up, he claimed a third share of Orkney, and,
not getting it, "called out a force from Caithness" where he mostly
lived.[5] Brusi and Einar then pooled their share of the islands,
Einar having the control of both; and Thorfinn got his trithing,[6]
managing it by his men, who collected his scatt and tolls under
Thorkel Fostri, whom Einar plotted to kill. Einar next seized Eyvind
Urarhorn, a Norse subject of distinction, who had caused his complete
defeat in Ulfreksfirth in Ireland, but was sheltering from a storm in
Orkney, and killed him, to the great anger of the Norse king.

Grasping at once the opportunity thus created, Thorfinn determined to
turn it to his own advantage. He sent Thorkel to King Olaf in Norway
to seek protection for himself against Einar, and Thorkel came back
bearing an invitation to Thorfinn to visit the Norwegian court, from
which the jarl returned as much in favour with the king as Einar was
in disgrace. Brusi then tried to reconcile Thorfinn and Einar, and
Thorkel was to be included in the settlement. Thorkel, however,
after inviting Einar to a feast in his hall at Sandvik in Deerness,
a promontory south-east of Kirkwall, discovered a plot by Einar to
attack him by three several ambushes as they left the house. In a
striking scene, the Saga tells how Thorkel, wounded, and Halvard, an
Icelander, dispatched Einar at the hearth of the hall; how Einar's
followers did not interfere; and how Thorkel fled to King Olaf in
Norway, who was much gratified by the death of Einar, the slayer of
his own friend Eyvind Urarhorn.[7]

On Einar's death, Brusi tried to get two-thirds of the isles, but
Thorfinn now claimed a half share, and King Olaf, in spite of a visit
by Thorfinn to him in Norway, ultimately awarded Brusi two-thirds,
Thorfinn having the rest. Brusi, however, being unable to defend the
isles from pirates, about the year 1028 gave up one of his trithings
to Thorfinn on his undertaking the defence of the isles,[8] for which
a powerful fleet would be essential, and Brusi died in 1031.

After this settlement of their claims, Malcolm II died in 1034 at
the age of eighty; and his death wrecked his policy. For Duncan,
his grandson, the Karl Hundason of the Saga, on his accession to
the Scottish throne claimed tribute from his cousin Thorfinn for
Caithness. Payment was at once refused, and six years of strife,
interrupted by Duncan's unfortunate raids south of the Tweed, ended by
his creating Mumtan or Moddan, his own sister's son, Earl of Caithness
instead of Thorfinn. With a force collected in Sudrland, which thus
appears to have been on the Scottish side, Moddan tried to make good
his title, but Thorfinn raised an army in Caithness, and Thorkel
collected another for him in Orkney, and the Scots retired before
superior numbers. "Then Earl Thorfinn fared after them, and laid under
him Sudrland and Ross and harried far and wide over Scotland; thence
he turned back to Caithness," and "sate at Duncansby, and had there
five long-ships ... and just enough force to man them well."[9]

After his retirement in Caithness, Moddan went to Duncan at North
Berwick, and Duncan sent him back with another force by land to
Caithness, proceeding thither himself by sea with eleven ships. Duncan
caught Thorfinn and his five ships off the Mull of Deerness in the
Mainland of Orkney, where, after a stiff hand-to-hand fight, the Scots
fleet was defeated and chased southwards by Thorfinn to Moray, which
he ravaged.[10]

Finding that Moddan and his army were in Thurso, Thorfinn sent Thorkel
Fostri thither secretly with part of his forces, and he set fire to
the house in which Moddan was, and killed him there as he tried to
escape. Thorkel next raised levies in Caithness, Sutherland, and Ross,
joined forces with Thorfinn in Moray, and harried the land, whereupon
Duncan collected an army from the south of Scotland and Cantire and
Ireland, and attacked his enemies in the north.

A great battle ensued near the Norse stronghold of Turfness,[11]
probably Burghead, where peat is found in abundance, though now
submerged; and the battle was fought at Standing Stane in the parish
of Duffus, three miles and a half E.S.E. of Burghead, on the 14th of
August 1040.

The Saga gives the following description of the jarl and of the

"Earl Thorfinn was at the head of his battle array; he had a gilded
helmet on his head, and was girt with a sword, a great spear in his
hand, and he fought with it, striking right and left.... He went
thither first where the battle of those Irish was; so hot was he with
his train, that they gave way at once before him, and never afterwards
got into good order again. Then Karl let them bring forward his banner
to meet Thorfinn; there was a hard fight, and the end of it was that
Karl laid himself out to fly, but some men say that he has fallen."

"Earl Thorfinn drove the flight before him a long way up into
Scotland, and after that he fared about far and wide over the land and
laid it under him."[12]

Then followed Thorfinn's conquests in Fife, and after relating the
failure of a Scottish force, which had surrendered, to kill him by
surprise, the Saga gives a lurid picture of his burnings of farms and
slayings of all the fighting men, "while the women and old men dragged
themselves off to the woods and wastes with weeping and wailing," and
it also tells of his journey north along Scotland to his ships.[13]
"He fared then north to Caithness, and sate there that winter, but
every summer thenceforth he had his levies out, and harried about the
west lands, but sate most often still in the winters," feasting his
men at his own expense, especially at Yuletide, in true Viking style.

Allowing for exaggeration, it is not too much to say that Thorfinn
and his cousin Macbeth must, after the death of their cousin Duncan
in 1040, between them have held all that is now Scotland save the
Lothians, until about 1057, when Macbeth was slain. To us it is
interesting to note[14] that Duncan died, not in old age, (as
Shakespeare, following Boece and the English chronicler Holinshed
would have us believe) but a young man of thirty-nine years, either
in, or after, Thorfinn's battle, and that he fell a victim not of
Groa, Macbeth's wife's cup of poison, but possibly of her husband's
dagger at Bothgowanan or Pitgavenny, a smithy about two miles from
Elgin. We should also note that Thorfinn's cruelty made it difficult
for him ever to hope to obtain and keep the throne of Scotland, which
thus fell to Macbeth.

Meantime Jarl Brusi had died about 1031, and though he left a son
Ragnvald, this son was long abroad in Norway, where he was taught all
the accomplishments suitable to his rank, and remained there at the
time of his father's death.[15] Ragnvald Brusi-son was "one of the
handsomest of men, his hair long and yellow as silk, and he was stout
and tall and an able splendid man of great mind and polite manners."
He had saved King Olaf's brother Harald Sigurdson at the great battle
of Stiklastad, after King Olaf, Ragnvald's own foster-father, was
killed, and had fought with great distinction in Russia. Shortly after
his father's death, Ragnvald returned, and, fortified by a grant from
King Magnus of Norway, whom he had helped to gain the throne, claimed
his father's two trithings of the Orkney jarldom. To this Thorfinn,
who after 1034 had his hands full with his war with King Duncan, and
had always wars with the Hebrides and the Irish, agreed, and the
two joined forces, and sailed on Viking raids to the Hebrides and

About 1044 Thorfinn married Ingibjorg,[17] Finn Arnason's daughter,
and it is interesting to find that in the _Saga Book of the Viking
Club_, Vol. IV, page 171, Mr. Collingwood suggests that the King of
Catanesse, who fought for years to gain possession of Gratiana, the
lost wife of William the Wanderer, was Thorfinn. If this story be
founded on fact, as it probably is, this may account for his somewhat
late marriage with Ingibjorg.

Thorfinn next claimed two trithings of Orkney from his nephew
Ragnvald, who demurred to giving up what the Norse king had conferred
on him, but, finding he could not cope with Thorfinn's Orkney,
Caithness and Scottish forces, Ragnvald fled to King Magnus, who gave
him a force of picked men, and bade Kalf Arnason also to help him,
although Kalf was Thorfinn's friend, and near connection by marriage.

The two jarls met in battle in the Pentland Firth, off Rautharbiorg or
Rattar Brough in Caithness, east of Dunnet Head, Kalf Arnason with
his six ships standing out of the fight. Thorfinn had sixty ships,
smaller, and, save Thorfinn's own, lower in the waist than those of
his enemy, who thus easily boarded them, and then attacked Thorfinn.
Surrounded and boarded on both sides, Thorfinn cut his ship free and
rowed to land. Arrived there, he removed his seventy dead, and all
his wounded. Next he persuaded Kalf Arnason to join him with his six
ships, and renewed and won the fight, though Ragnvald himself escaped
to Norway.[18]

Sailing thence in 1046 with one ship and a picked crew, Ragnvald
surrounded Thorfinn,[19] who was wintering in Mainland of Orkney, and
set fire to the Hall at Orphir in which he was, but the earl tore
out a panel at the back, and, escaping through it with his young wife
Ingibjorg in his arms, rowed in the dark over to Caithness, where
he remained in hiding among his friends, all in Orkney believing him
dead. Ragnvald then seized all the islands, and lived at Kirkwall.

But, while Ragnvald was in Little Papey--now Papa Stronsay--to fetch
malt for Yuletide, Thorfinn returned, and surrounded the house in
which Ragnvald was, by night; and, on his escaping by leaping through
the besiegers in priestly disguise, Thorfinn's men followed him, and,
led by his lapdog's barking, discovered him among the rocks by the
sea, where Thorkel Fostri slew him, Thorfinn meanwhile annihilating
his following, save one man. This man, who like the rest, was one of
King Magnus' bodyguard, he bade go to his king and tell the tale, and
he seized Kirkwall by stratagem. Jarl Ragnvald is said to have been
a man of large stature and great strength, and to have been buried in
Papa Westray, but a grave nearly eight feet long, that would fit him,
has been found where he fell in Papa Stronsay.

All this left Thorfinn with his great aim achieved. He was now
sole jarl of Orkney and Shetland, and sole earl of Caithness and
Sutherland, and he also held Ross and the western islands and coast
down to Galloway, and part of Ireland, as his _rikis_ or conquered
tributary lands.

The fourth and last period of his career now begins with his dramatic
visit to King Magnus in Norway; and, on the death of that king, he
became the friend of his successor, Harald Hardrada, in 1047, and
after visiting King Sweyn in Denmark, and Henry III, Emperor of
Germany, rode south to Rome probably in 1050 along with, it is said,
his cousin Macbeth, king, and a good king, of Scotland, returning
thence to Orkney to his Hall at Birsay at the north-west corner of
Mainland. Thorfinn went to the Pope not only for absolution, but to
get Thorolf appointed bishop in Orkney, according to Adam of Bremen,
c. 243.

We now come to the last years of the fourth period of his life, when
"the earl sate down quietly and kept peace over all his realm. Then
he left off warfare, and he turned his mind to ruling his people and
land, and to law-giving. He sate almost always in Birsay, and let them
build there Christchurch,[20] a splendid Minster. There first was set
up a bishop's seat in the Orkneys."

The Annals of Tighernac record a great Norse expedition with the aid
of the Galls of Orkney and Innse Gall and Dublin to subdue the Saxons
in 1057, which failed. It is strange that we hear nothing of Thorfinn
in this, and the question arises whether he had died before it took
place. Had he been alive, such an expedition would hardly have been
possible without him.[21] It is interesting to note that so accurate
a chronicler as Sir Archibald Dunbar dates his widow Ingibjorg's
marriage to Malcolm III in 1059. (See _Scottish Kings_, p. 27.)

Thorfinn's life forms the subject of no less than twenty-six chapters
of the _Orkneyinga Saga_.[22] In his childhood, and later at all the
main turning points of his life, he was blessed with the constant care
and touching devotion, and with the able counsel and active assistance
of his foster-father, Thorkel Fostri, the slayer of his three
chief competitors--Jarl Einar and Earl Moddan and Jarl Ragnvald
Brusi-son--the captain of his armies, the collector of his revenues
and the guardian, in his absence on his Viking cruises and in his
travels abroad, of his widespread dominions. There is a tradition[23]
that Thorkel founded the rock-castle of Borve, near Farr on the north
coast of Sutherland, which was demolished by the Earl of Sutherland
in 1556; but Thorkel is a common name among Vikings, and the story is
otherwise unauthenticated.

According to the Saga, Thorfinn died of sickness "in the latter days
of Harald Hardrada," (who was killed in September 1066), near the
church which he founded, in his Hall at Birsay, north of Marwick Head
in the north-west corner of Mainland of Orkney, within a few miles
of the scene of Earl Kitchener's recent death at sea, so that the
greatest of our jarls and of our earls rest near each other, the great
Viking on the shore, and the great soldier in the ocean.

The chronology of Thorfinn and Ingibjorg his wife is extremely
difficult, but on the whole we incline to think that he was born in
1008, and, as grandson of the king regnant, was created an earl at his
birth, married Ingibjorg, then quite young, in 1044, and died in 1057
or 1058, after being an earl for his whole life of "fifty years,"
while his widow married Malcolm III in 1059. The phrase "in the latter
days of Harald Hardrada" is after all an expression wide enough to
cover the last seven years of a reign of twenty-one years, and it is
unlikely that a marriage of policy would be postponed for more than
the year or two after Malcolm's accession in 1057, during which he was
engaged in defeating the claims of Lulach to his throne and settling
his kingdom.


_Paul and Erlend, Hakon and Magnus._

After Earl Thorfinn's death his sons Paul and Erlend jointly held the
jarldom, but divided the lands. They were "big men both, and handsome,
but wise and modest"[1] like their Norse mother Ingibjorg, known as
Earls'-mother, first cousin of Thora, queen of Norway, mother of King
Olaf Kyrre.

On Thorfinn's death, however, the rest of his territories, nine
Scottish earldoms, it is said, "fell away, and went under those men
who were territorially born to rule over them;" that is to say, they
reverted to Scottish Maormors;[2] but Orkney and Shetland remained
wholly Norse, and under Norse rule.

The date of the succession of Paul and Erlend to the Norse jarldom[3]
was, as we have seen, after 1057. Possibly in 1059, or certainly not
later than 1064 or 1065, Ingibjorg, Thorfinn's widow, as by Norse law
widows alone had the right to do, "gave herself away" to the Scot-King
Malcolm III, known as Malcolm Canmore.[4]

As a matter of policy, the marriage was a wise step. For it would
tend to strengthen not only the hold of Scotland on Caithness and
Sutherland, but also its connection with Orkney and Shetland, because
Ingibjorg's sons, the young jarls Paul and Erlend, would become
stepsons of the Scottish king and earls of Caithness. Nor was the
marriage unsuitable in point either of the age or of the rank of the
contracting parties. Married to Thorfinn about 1044,[5] Ingibjorg, his
widow, need not in 1064 have been more than forty. She may have been
younger, and Malcolm was, in 1064, about thirty-three. If the
marriage was in 1059, Ingibjorg would be only thirty-five and Malcolm
twenty-eight. That Ingibjorg was not old is proved by the fact that
she had by Malcolm one son and possibly three sons,[6] namely, Duncan
II, and, it may be, also Malcolm and Donald. As regards rank, also,
she was equal to Malcolm, being a cousin of the Queen of Norway, and
widow of Thorfinn grandson of Malcolm II, the great jarl of Orkney who
had then recently subdued all the north of Scotland and the Western
Isles and Galloway to himself, while Malcolm III was in exile in
England, whence he had been brought back with the greatest difficulty,
not by a Scottish force but by the help of an English, or at least a
Northumbrian army.

After his marriage with Ingibjorg it is clear that there was peace for
thirty years in the north of Scotland, so far as the Norse jarls
were concerned, a fact which of itself justified the marriage,
which, however, may have afterwards been held to have been within the
prohibited degrees, and therefore void, while its issue would be held
to be illegitimate, and not entitled to succeed to the Scottish crown.

We may add that there is nothing in any Scottish record to prove this
marriage or to disprove it.

The first important event in the lives of Paul and Erlend happened
just before the Norman conquest of England. They joined King Harald
Sigurdson (Hardrada) and his son Prince Olaf, who was their second
cousin on their mother's side,[7] in an attack on England; and, after
Harald's death, and his army's defeat by King Harold Godwinson of
England at Stamford Bridge, in September 1066, (three days before
William the Conqueror landed at Pevensey) the two Orkney jarls were
taken prisoner, but, along with Prince Olaf, they were released.
On their return to Orkney, Paul asked the Archbishop of York to
consecrate a cleric of Orkney as Bishop in Orkney, and the two
brothers ruled harmoniously there until their sons Hakon on the one
hand and Magnus and Erling on the other, who had been engaged in
Viking cruises together as boys, grew up and quarrelled, and, as is
usual, drew their fathers into the strife. This strife was provoked by
Hakon, and apparently lasted for many years,[8] Erlend supporting
his own sons, and driving Hakon abroad to Norway about the year 1090.
Neither Paul nor Erlend seems to have been much in Sutherland or
Caithness, in which the representatives of the Gaelic Maormors or
Chiefs probably regained power, especially the family of Moddan, and
extended their territories.

Meantime King Magnus Barelegs[9] of Norway, instigated by Hakon,
and taking advantage of the contentions between 1093 and 1098 of
the various claimants of the Scottish crown, Donald Bane (whom he
supported), Duncan II, and Edgar, had made his several expeditions, in
the closing years of the eleventh century, against the western islands
and coasts of Scotland and Wales. In the battle of the Menai Straits
in 1098 we find that he had with him young Hakon Paulson, and also
Erling and Magnus, Jarl Erlend's sons, though Magnus, who had repented
of his early Viking ways, after declining to take part in the fight
against an enemy with whom he had no quarrel, escaped to the Scottish
court.[10] In 1098 King Magnus had deposed and carried off Jarls Paul
and Erlend to Norway, where they died soon after; and in the meantime
he had appointed his own son, Sigurd, to be ruler of Orkney and
Shetland in their place.[11] But on King Magnus' death, during his
later expedition to Ireland, where Erling Erlendson probably also
fell, Prince Sigurd had to quit Orkney in order to ascend the
Norwegian throne, leaving the jarldom vacant for the two cousins,
Hakon Paulson and Magnus Erlendson. The latter appears to have stayed
for some years at the Scottish Court and afterwards with a bishop in
Wales, and again in Scotland, but on hearing of his father's death,
went to Caithness, where he was well received and was chosen and
honoured with the title of "earl" about 1103. A winter or two after
King Magnus' death, or about 1105, Hakon came back from Norway with
the title of Jarl, seized Orkney, and slew the king of Norway's
steward, who was protecting Magnus' share, which after a time Magnus
claimed, only to find that Hakon had prepared a force to dispute his
rights. Hakon agreed, however, to give up his claims to Magnus'
half share if Magnus should obtain a grant of it from the Norwegian
king.[12] King Eystein about 1106 gave him this moiety and the title
of Jarl; and the two cousins lived in amity for "many winters,"
joining their forces and fighting and killing Dufnjal,[13] who was one
degree further off than their first cousin, and killing Thorbjorn at
Burrafirth in Unst in Shetland "for good cause." Magnus then married,
probably about 1107, "a high-born lady, and the purest maid of the
noblest stock of Scotland's chiefs, living with her ten winters" as
a maiden. After "some winters" evil-minded men set about spoiling
the friendship of the jarls, and Hakon again seized Magnus' share;
whereupon the latter went to the court of Henry I of England, where he
appears to have charmed everyone, and to have spent a year, probably
1111, in which Hakon seized all Orkney, and also Caithness, which then
included Sutherland, and laid them under his rule with robbery and
wantonness. Leaving Caithness, Hakon at once went to attack Magnus
in Orkney where he had landed; but the "good men" intervened, and an
equal division of Orkney and Shetland and Caithness was made between
the jarls. After some winters, however, they met in battle array in
Mainland, and the fight was again stopped by the principal men
on either side in their own interest, the final settlement being
postponed until a meeting, which was to take place in Egilsay in the
next spring, Magnus arrived first at the meeting-place with the small
following of two ships agreed upon, but Hakon came later in seven or
eight ships with a great force, and, after those present had refused
to let both come away alive, Magnus was treacherously murdered under
Hakon's orders by Hakon's cook on the 16th of April 1116. The dead
jarl's mother, Thora, had prepared a feast in Paplay to celebrate the
reconciliation of the two cousins, which, notwithstanding the murder,
Hakon attended. After the banquet the bereaved mother begged her son's
corpse for burial in holy ground, and obtained it from the drunken
earl after some difficulty and buried it in Christ's Kirk at Birsay.
Twenty-one years after, on the 13th December 1137, Jarl Magnus' relics
were brought[14] to St. Magnus' Cathedral at Kirkwall.

After making due allowance for the legends which generally cluster
round a saint or jarl, and grow with time, and for the desire for
dramatic contrast and effect, we must give credit to the writer of
the _Orkneyinga Saga_, probably the Orkney Bishop Bjarni,[15] for the
vividness and simplicity of his account of St. Magnus' life and of the
two most striking episodes in it--his moral courage as a non-combatant
in the battle of Menai Straits, and his saintly forgiveness of his
murderers in his death-scene on Egilsay; and we must hold him worthy
alike of his aureole and of the noble Norman cathedral afterwards
erected in his memory by his nephew, St. Ragnvald Jarl, at Kirkwall,
which took the place of Thorfinn's church at Birsay as the seat of the
Orkney bishopric. Magnus, it seems, was all through assisted by the
Scottish king, and favoured by the Caithness folk,[16] yet the Saga
jealously claims him as "the Isle-earl,"[17] and adds the following
description of him:--

"He was the most peerless of men, tall of growth, manly, and lively
of look, virtuous in his ways, fortunate in fight, a sage in wit,
ready-tongued and lordly-minded, lavish of money and high spirited,
quick of counsel, and more beloved of his friends than any man;
blithe and of kind speech to wise and good men, but hard and unsparing
against robbers and sea-rovers; he let many men be slain who harried
the freemen and land folk; he made murderers and thieves be taken,
and visited as well on the powerful as on the weak robberies and
thieveries and all ill-deeds. He was no favourer of his friends in his
judgments, for he valued more godly justice than the distinctions of
rank. He was open-handed to chiefs and powerful men, but still he ever
showed most care for poor men. In all things he kept straitly God's

As for Hakon, his cousin Magnus' death without issue left him sole
Jarl, "and he made all men take an oath to him who had before served
Earl Magnus. But some winters after, Hakon ... fared south to Rome,
and to Jerusalem, whence he sought the halidoms, and bathed in the
river Jordan, as is palmer's wont.[18] And on his return he became a
good ruler, and kept his realm well at peace." He probably then built
the round church at Orphir in Mainland of Orkney, the only Templar
Church in Scotland.

By Helga, Moddan's daughter, whom he never married, Hakon had a
son Harald Slettmali (smooth-talker, or glib of speech), and two
daughters, Ingibiorg and Margret. Ingibiorg afterwards married Olaf
Bitling, king of the Sudreys; and Ragnvald Gudrodson, the great
Viking, was of her line, and, as we shall see, in 1200 or thereabouts,
had the Caithness earldom conferred upon him for a short time. To
Margret we shall return later. By a lawful wife Hakon had another son,
Paul the Silent, and it seems certain that Paul was not by the same
mother as Margret or Harald Slettmali, and that Paul's mother was not
of Moddan's family.

Moddan, Earl of Caithness, was killed in 1040. His mother, daughter
of Bethoc, must have been born after 1002. If she was married at
seventeen, her son Earl Moddan could not have been more than twenty
when killed in 1040, and any son of his must have been born by 1041 at
latest. This son may have been Moddan in Dale. Dale was the valley of
the upper Thurso River, the only great valley of Caithness, and the
Saga states as follows:--

Moddan[19] "then dwelt in Dale in Caithness, a man of rank and very
wealthy," and "his son Ottar was jarl in Thurso." Frakark, a daughter
of Moddan in Dale, was the wife of Liot Nidingr, or the Dastard, a
Sudrland chief, and during the half century after Thorfinn's death
Moddan's family seems to have owned much of Caithness and Sutherland,
where the Norse steadily lost their hold. We may be sure also that the
Celt always kept his land, if he could, or, if he lost it, regained it
as soon as he could. Amongst its members this family probably held all
the hills and upper parts of the valleys of Strathnavern, Sutherland
and Ness at this time, and, from a centre on the low-lying land at
the head waters of the Naver, Helmsdale and Thurso rivers, kept on
pressing their more Norse neighbours steadily outwards and eastwards.

Shortly after Hakon's death in 1123, King Alexander I and his brother,
David I, began to organise the Catholic Church in Scotland, and also
to introduce feudalism. Even in the north of Scotland, between the
years 1107 and 1153 they founded monasteries and bishoprics, and
introduced Norman knights and barons holding land by feudal service
from the Crown. Long thwarted in their policy by Moray and its Pictish
maormors, who claimed even the throne itself, these two kings pushed
their authority, by organisation and conquest, more and more towards
the north. Alexander I founded the Bishoprics of St. Andrew's,
Dunkeld, and Moray in 1107, and the Monastery of Scone, afterwards
intimately connected with Kildonan in Sutherland, in 1113 or 1114.
David I, that "sair sanct to the croun," who succeeded in 1124,
founded the Bishoprics of Ross and of Caithness in 1128 or 1130, and
of Aberdeen in 1137, and endowed them with lands. The same king[20]
between 1140 and 1145 issued a mandate "to Reinwald Earl of Orkney and
to the Earl and all the men of substance of Caithness and Orkney to
love and maintain free from injury the monks of Durnach and their men
and property," and also in some year between 1145 and 1153, he granted
Hoctor Common[21] near Durnach, to Andrew, Bishop of Caithness, whose
see was then well established there, and he spent the summer of 1150,
while he was superintending the building of the Cistercian abbey
of Kinloss, in the neighbouring Castle of Duffus, whose ruins still
stand, with Freskyn de Moravia, the first known ancestor of the Earls
of Sutherland.[22]

Freskyn, probably about 1130[23] or earlier, had built this castle on
the northern estate, comprising the parish of Spynie near Elgin
and other extensive lands in Moray, which had been given to him in
addition to his southern territories of Strabrock, now Uphall and
Broxburn[24] in Linlithgowshire, which he already held from the
Scottish king. Freskyn was thus no Fleming, but a lowland Pict or
Scot, as the tradition of his house maintains,[25] and he was a
common ancestor of the great Scottish families of Atholl, Bothwell,
Sutherland, and probably Douglas. No member of the Freskyn family is
ever styled "Flandrensis" in any writ.

We find in the extreme north of Scotland, in the first half of the
twelfth century, apart from the Mackays, three leading families with
great followings, which were destined to play an important part in the
future government of Sutherland and Caithness, and with which we shall
have to deal in detail later on.

First, there was the family of the so-called Norse jarls, descended in
twin strains from Paul and Erlend, Thorfinn's sons, owing allegiance
to the Norwegian crown in respect of Orkney and Shetland and also
holding the earldom of Caithness in moieties or in entirety, nominally
from the Scottish king. Secondly, we have the family of Moddan, Celtic
earls or maormors, with extensive territories held under the kings
of Alban and Scotland for many centuries before this time, but
dispossessed in part by the Norse. Thirdly, we have the family of
Freskyn de Moravia then established at Strabrock in Linlithgowshire,
who about 1120 or 1130 received, for his loyalty and services,
extensive lands at Duffus and elsewhere in Morayshire, and probably
about 1196 the lands in south Caithness known as Sudrland or
Sutherland, from the Scottish crown.

Of this third line of De Moravias or Morays, two distinct branches
settled north of the Oykel. First, we have Hugo Freskyn, son, it is
said, but, as we shall see, really grandson, of the original Freskyn
and son of Freskyn's elder or eldest son William.[26] This William no
doubt fought for, and may, or may not, have held land in Sutherland,
but his son Hugo certainly had all Sutherland properly so called, that
is, Sudrland, or the Southland of Caithness comprising the parishes of
Creich, Dornoch, Rogart, Kilmalie (afterwards Golspie), Clyne, Loth,
and most of Lairg and Kildonan,[27] formally granted to him, and he
held also the Duffus Estates in Moray, by sea only thirty miles south
of Dunrobin.

The second branch was that of the younger Freskin de Moravia,
great-great-grandson of the original Freskyn,[28] and ancestor of
the Lords of Duffus, who obtained lands, which were mainly in modern
Caithness, and also in the upper portion of the valley of the Naver
and the valley of Coire-na-fearn in Strathnavern, by marriage with the
Lady Johanna of Strathnaver about 1250.[29] This latter portion
was immediately north of the land granted to Hugo Freskyn; and the
Caithness portion of Johanna's lands marched with Hugo's land on its
eastern boundary. Nor must we forget that a large area of the modern
county of Sutherland, consisting of part of the present parishes
of Eddrachilles and Durness and some part of Tongue and Farr in
Strathnavern, was constantly used as a refuge by Pictish refugees of
the race of MacHeth or MacAoidh, displaced and frequently driven forth
from Moray after the bloody defeat of Stracathro in 1130 and in later
rebellions as part of the policy of the Scottish kings, and first
known as the race of Morgan and then to us as the Clan Mackay.

They chose, indeed, for their refuge and ultimately for their
settlements a rugged and sterile land, to which their original title
was no charter, but their swords. Difficulties, it is said, make
character, and nowhere is this proverbial saying better illustrated
and proved than in the Reay country by its men and women. They
have given their own and other countries many fine regiments and
distinguished generals and statesmen, and none more so than the late
Lord Reay. Their history is to be found in the _Book of Mackay_, a
piece of good pioneer work from original documents by the late Mr.
Angus Mackay, and also in his unfortunately unfinished _Province of

Yet another family, of Norse and Viking lineage, which was settled in
Orkney from the earliest Norse times and afterwards in Caithness and
Sutherland, was that of the Gunns, who were descended in the male line
from Sweyn Asleifarson the great Viking, and on the female side from
the line of Paul, and later were by marriage connected with the Moddan
clan and with the line of Erlend. They have for nine centuries lived
and still live in Sutherland and Caithness, and have been noted
alike for the beauty of their women, and for the high attainments and
character and the distinction of their men, particularly in the art of
war, both by land and sea.

Their descent from Jarl Paul and Sweyn is clear in the Sagas as far as
Snaekoll Gunnison and no further. It was as follows:--Paul Thorfinnson
had four daughters, of whom the third was Herbjorg, who had a daughter
Sigrid, who in turn had a daughter Herbjorg, who married Kolbein
Hruga. One of their sons was Bishop Bjarni and their youngest child
was a daughter Frida, who married Andres, Sweyn Asleifarson's son,
and their son was Gunni, the father, by Ragnhild, Earl and Jarl Harald
Ungi's sister, of Snaekoll Gunnison. We suggest later that Snaekoll
Gunnison was the father, before his flight to Norway, of a daughter,
Johanna of Strathnaver, who inherited the Moddan and Erlend estates,
or that she was otherwise Ragnhild's heiress.

The male line of the Gunns, according to a pedigree which the writer
has seen, was continued after his flight by Snaekoll who, it is
stated, had a son, Ottar, living in 1280. But after Snaekoll's flight
his right to succeed to Ragnhild's estates was doubtless forfeited,
and they were granted on his father's and mother's death to Johanna
on her marriage with Freskin de Moravia of Duffus about 1245 or later,
before Ottar's birth.

With the descent of the Gunns in the male line downwards we are not
here concerned. But Snaekoll's forfeiture probably cost their male
line the Moddan and Erlend lands, which were granted to Johanna of
Strathnaver in Snaekoll's absence abroad.


_The Moddan Family--Jarls Harald and Paul and Ragnvald._

From the short forecast of the future given above, let us turn back to
the point whence we digressed, namely the year 1123, when Jarl Hakon
Paulson died at the close of the reign of Alexander I of Scotland.

Jarl Hakon was succeeded by his sons, Harald the Glib (Slettmali) and
Paul the Silent (Umalgi). Jarl Paul lived mainly in Orkney, while Jarl
Harald "was seated in Sutherland, and held Caithness from the Scot
king" David I, who was crowned in 1124.[1] All Harald's sympathies
seem to have been Scottish, and he was born, bred, and brought up
among Scotsmen, or Picts, probably in North Kildonan. He was always
there with Frakark, daughter of Moddan in Dale, then a widow, her
husband Liot Nidingr or the Dastard being dead; and Frakark and her
sister Helga, Jarl Hakon's mistress, "had a great share in ruling the
land"; while Audhild, daughter of Thorleif, Frakark's sister, also
lived with Frakark,[2] and was the mistress at this time of one of
the strangest characters in the Saga, Sigurd Slembi-diakn, or
the Sham-deacon. Hakon's son Paul being, as appears certain, by a
different mother not of the Moddan line, Frakark and Helga aimed at
obtaining the whole jarldom of Orkney for Harald, Helga's son by Earl
Hakon. With the object of getting rid of Paul, they went over with
Sigurd Slembi-diakn to Orphir in Orkney; and we have the story of
the poisoned shirt,[3] made there by Frakark and Helga, and by them
intended for Paul, but put on, in spite of their expostulations and
entreaties, by Harald, who died of its poison, leaving, however, one
son, Erlend, then an infant.

After this, Jarl Paul banished these ladies from Orkney about 1127,
and they "fared away with all their kith and kin, first to Caithness,
and then up into Sutherland to those homesteads which Frakark owned
there,"[4] and tradition[5] locates her residence at Shenachu or Carn
Shuin, on the east side of the River Helmsdale near Kinbrace above the
road. Possibly, however, they lived at Borrobol, the "Castle Farm";[6]
and there "there were brought up by Frakark Margret, Earl Hakon's
daughter, and Helga, Moddan's daughter," and also Eric Stagbrellir,
Frakark's grandnephew, and son of her niece Audhild by Eric Streita,
a Norseman, as well as Olvir Rosta and Thorbiorn Klerk, both Frakark's
grandsons, all of whom come prominently into our story. Audhild's son,
Eric Stagbrellir, in the end was the survivor of these, as well as of
all males of the Moddan line, and ultimately we hear of no descendants
in Cat of any of them save of Eric, and Eric's marriage with Ingigerd,
St. Ragnvald Jarl's only child, is the link between the line of Erlend
and that of Moddan, which united the Erlend and Moddan estates.

Of the line of Thorfinn we already know the royal origin and descent
from Malcolm II's third daughter.

Of the Moddan line the Saga says[7]--"These men were all of great
family and great for their own sakes, and they all thought they had
a great claim in the Orkneys to those realms which their kinsman Earl
Harald (Slettmali) had owned. The brothers of Frakark were Angus of
the open hand, and Earl Ottir in Thurso: he was a man of birth and
rank." These children of Moddan were probably of royal lineage or
kinship, as Moddan, who had been created Earl of Caithness by King
Duncan I, was that king's sister's son, and was probably, as we have
seen, their ancestor or kinsman. They were also probably descended
more remotely from Moldan, Maormor of Duncansby, a kinsman of Malcolm
II, but had all been driven back from the coast, save Earl Ottir, who
lived at Thurso, and probably owned its valley up to its source in the
Halkirk and Latheron hills.

The death of Harald the Glib by poison left Paul _de facto_ sole jarl
of Orkney. We are told[8] that "Paul was a man of very many friends,
and no speaker at Things or meetings. He let many other men rule the
land with him, was courteous and kind to all the land-folk, liberal of
money, and he spared nothing to his friends. He was not fond of war,
and sate much in quiet." We may be sure that he was little, if
ever, in Sutherland, the country of his enemy Frakark. His rule was,
however, destined to be disturbed, on the one hand by the Moddan
family's plots, and, on the other hand, by a Norse competitor for the
jarldom, Kali, son of Kol and Gunnhild, Jarl St. Magnus' sister, who
had been re-named Ragnvald from his resemblance to the handsome Jarl
Ragnvald Brusi's son, and was afterwards designated Jarl of Orkney by
King Sigurd of Norway, as the representative of the line of Erlend,
Thorfinn's son.

With Jarl Ragnvald, Jarl St. Magnus' sequel in estate, and himself
afterwards St. Ragnvald, who was much in Caithness and Sutherland,
and seems to have held and acquired considerable estates there, begins
what is practically a new Saga, which may be styled "The Story of
Ragnvald, and of Sweyn" the great Viking. Of these two we have perhaps
the finest and most vividly painted pictures of the _Orkneyinga Saga_,
full of dramatic touches, full, too, of interesting historical detail.

First, we have a portrait of the young Ragnvald as Kali Kolson in his
youth at Agdir in Norway, with his mother Gunnhild, sister of Jarl St.
Magnus Erlend's son, and his shrewd old father Kol. We are told that
Kali was "the most hopeful man" or man of promise, "of middle stature,
fine of limb, with light brown hair"; how he "had many friends, and
was a more proper man both in body and mind than most of the other men
of his time, a good player at draughts, a facile writer of runes,
and a reader of books, good at smith's work, ski-ing, shooting, and
rowing, and as skilful at song as at the harp."[9]

At the age of fifteen, he traded to Grimsby, where many Norwegians
and Orkneymen came, and many from the Hebrides; and here he met Harald
Gillikrist, who became his firm friend, and confided in him alone that
he, Harald, was the son of King Magnus Barelegs, asking how he would
be received by King Sigurd of Norway, and obtaining the diplomatic
reply that he would be well received by the king, if others did not
spoil his welcome. Then Kali returns to Bergen in 1116, about the
time of Jarl Magnus' murder by his cousin Jarl Hakon, and after a
friendship and a feud with Jon Peterson, which is amicably settled
by the marriage of Jon with Kali's sister Ingirid, and of which the
description well illustrates the manners and law of the times, is made
Jarl Ragnvald of Orkney by King Sigurd; and on that king's death in
1126 he is confirmed in the title by his friend King Harald, for whom
he fought in the battle for the throne at Floruvoe near Bergen, when
King Magnus was captured, maimed, and deposed by Harald in 1135.

Jarl Paul, however, refused to part with half the isles; and, acting
on Kol's advice, Jarl Ragnvald's messengers apply for aid in obtaining
it to Frakark and her grandson Olvir Rosta in Kildonan, and offer
them Paul's half share if they will help Ragnvald to secure his
half. Frakark, having previously arranged that her niece Margret, the
daughter of Earl Hakon and Helga, should marry Earl Maddad of Athole,
second cousin to David I, as his second wife, thought that Orkney
might be had, with half the jarldom and all Caithness, for Margret's
son Harold Maddadson, then an infant in arms.

Ragnvald and Frakark then made common cause.[10] But in 1136 Paul
defeated Frakark's ships in a sea fight off Tankerness in Deer Sound
in Orkney, and immediately afterwards seized Jarl Ragnvald's fleet in
Yell Sound in Shetland, though Ragnvald and his men escaped to Norway
in merchant vessels, to return later on.[11]

Meantime Olvir Rosta, Frakark's grandson, who had been stunned and
nearly drowned in the sea fight at Tankerness, in which Sweyn's and
Gunni's father, Olaf Hrolf's son, had aided Jarl Paul, burned Olaf
alive in his home at Duncansby, Asleif, Olaf's wife, escaping only
because she was absent at the time. Further, Valthiof, Sweyn's elder
brother, was drowned in the roost of the West-firth, while rowing
south to Jarl Paul's Yule Feast. Sweyn Asleifarson, as he was ever
afterwards called, then went to Paul's Hall at Orphir to complain of
Olvir Rosta. The news of his brother's death, which arrived during
the feast, was considerately withheld from him, and he was greatly
honoured there; but he roused the jarl's anger by slaying Sweyn
Breast-rope, the jarl's forecastle-man, at Orphir, not indeed so much
for the murder, as because Sweyn had fled and did not come to submit
himself after it to the jarl, and so offended him.[12]

Then follow the stories, well worth reading in the Saga itself, of
the raising and lowering of the sails on Ragnvald's ships and of the
mutiny of Paul's followers, and of the dowsing of the beacons on the
Fair Isle by Uni, Ragnvald's ally, of Ragnvald's landing in Westray,
of his suppression of all opposition to him, of the spies at Paul's
Thing, of Sweyn's junction of forces with Ragnvald, of Sweyn's visit
to Margret at Athole, and his dramatic kidnapping of Jarl Paul while
hunting otters near Westness[13] in the Isle of Rousay, in Orkney,
and of the jarl's deportation by Sweyn first to Dufeyra and thence via
Ekkjals-bakki[14] to Athole to his sister Margret, who receives him
with the utmost show of cordiality, and finally of Paul's abdication
in favour of Margret's second son, Harold Maddadson, then a boy
of five years of age, with the instructions to Sweyn to tell the
Orkneymen that Paul himself was blinded, or, worse still, maimed,
so that his friends should not seek him out, and restore him to his
jarldom.[15] Such is one version of the story; the other is a more
sinister tale, that his half-sister Margret cast Jarl Paul into a
dungeon and had him murdered, and, so far as the Saga relates, he left
no issue.

Sweyn then returns to Orkney and tells his version of the affair to
the bishop, the bishop to Ragnvald, and Ragnvald to the "good men" or
_lendirmen_ of Orkney, who express themselves satisfied, and Ragnvald
builds the Cathedral he had vowed to St. Magnus in Kirkwall--a strange
medley of craftiness, murder, and piety.

Next we have the vivid scene[16] of the arrival from Athole at
Knarstead near Scapa, in his blue cope and quaintly cut beard, on a
fine winter's day, of John, Bishop, probably of Glasgow, and formerly
tutor to King David of Scotland, on whom Jarl Ragnvald waits like a
page, and who passes on to Egilsay to Bishop William the Old; and the
two clerics propose to Jarl Ragnvald that Harald Maddadson, who
had already been created sole Earl of Caithness, shall have Paul
Thorfinnson's half of the Orkney jarldom, an arrangement which
Ragnvald accepts, and which is ratified by the people of Orkney and
of Caithness. In due course the boy arrives in 1139, and the tutor
selected for him is, of all others, Frakark's grandson, Thorbiorn
Klerk, who had married Sweyn Asleifarson's sister, Ingirid, and who
was "one of the boldest of men, and the most unfair, overbearing man
in most things,"[17] differing indeed but little in character from
Sweyn himself "who was a wise man and foresighted about many things;
and an unfair overbearing man and reckless towards others," while they
were both said to be men "of power and weight," and at this time they
were fast friends.

Then follows the story of Frakark's Burning, one of the most purely
Sutherland tales in the whole Saga.[18]

Sweyn, to avenge on that lady and her grandson, Olvir Rosta, the
burning of his own father Olaf and of his house in Duncansby, openly
asked Jarl Ragnvald for "two ships well fitted and manned," sailed
to the Moray Firth, the Breithifiorthr or Broadfirth, as it was then
called, "and took the north-west wind to Dufeyra, a market town in
Scotland. Thence he sailed into the land along the shore of Moray
and to Ekkjals-bakki. Thence he fared next of all to Athole to Earl
Maddad, and lay at the place called Elgin and obtained guides, who
knew the paths over fells and wastes whither he wished to go.[19]
Thence he fared the upper way over fells and woods, above all places
where men dwelt, and came out in Strath Helmsdale near the middle of
Sutherland. But Olvir and his men had scouts out everywhere where they
thought that strife was to be looked for from the Orkneys; but in this
way they did not look for warriors. So they were not ware of the
host, before Sweyn and his men had come to the slope at the back of
Frakark's homestead. There came against them Olvir the Unruly with
sixty men; then they fell to battle at once, and there was a short
struggle. Olvir and his men gave way towards the homestead; for they
could not get to the wood. Then there was a great slaughter of men,
but Olvir fled away up to Helmsdale Water and swam across the river
and so up on to the fell: and thence he fared to Skotland's Firth,[20]
and so out to the Southern Isles. And he is out of the story. But when
Olvir drew off, Sweyn and his men fared straight up to the house, and
plundered it of everything; but, after that, they burnt the homestead
and all those men and women who were inside it. And there Frakark lost
her life. Sweyn and his men did there the greatest harm in Sutherland,
ere they fared to their ships."

Such is this Sutherland tale of Sweyn. According to the current
notions of blood feud, he merely discharged the solemn duty of
avenging his father's burning and death by a like burning and slaying
of the household of his father's murderers. But his acts were wholly
unjustifiable by the law of the time, as he had already accepted an
atonement by were-geld from Earl Ottar.

After a round of harrying and piracy, especially in Sutherland, no
doubt among the Moddan clan, Sweyn was heartily welcomed home by Jarl
Ragnvald, from whom he immediately obtained another fleet for another
set of raids on Wales, the coasts of the Bristol Channel and the
Scilly Isles. His murder of Sweyn Breast-rope was committed just after
an adjournment of the feast at Orphir for Nones in the Templar Church
there, and Jarl Ragnvald's gift of the ships for Frakark's punishment
was made while the jarl was piously engaged in completing and adorning
St. Magnus' Cathedral at Kirkwall.

The strategy leading up to the Burning is characteristic of Sweyn and
his stratagems. He _openly_ asks for ships and sails in them, and
thus is expected to land on the coast. But after a purposely
devious course, which has puzzled inquirers into the locality of
Ekkjals-bakki, he came overland by Oykel and Lairg and Strathnaver or
Strathskinsdale, whence he was not looked for.

Thorbiorn Klerk next has his revenges. First he burnt Earl Waltheof
(who had slain his father) in Moray, and next he killed two of Sweyn's
men who had assisted in the burning of Thorbiorn's relative, Frakok,
or Frakark, in Kildonan. Jarl Ragnvald with difficulty reconciles
Thorbiorn and Sweyn, and they start for a joint raid. Soon, however,
they squabble over the spoils, and Thorbiorn puts his wife Ingirid,
Sweyn's sister, away, a deed that reopened their feud.[21]

For a series of robberies in Caithness, Sweyn is besieged by Jarl
Ragnvald in Lambaborg, now known as Freswick Castle, but escapes by
swimming in his armour under the cliffs and landing in Caithness,
whence he passed southwards through Sutherland to Scotland and
Edinburgh, where King David I received him with honour, and reconciled
him with Jarl Ragnvald.[22]

In 1148, Ragnvald decided to visit King Ingi in Norway, taking
Harold Maddadson, then a boy of fifteen, with him.[23] There he meets
Eindridi, who had been long in Micklegarth, as Constantinople was then
called by the Norse, probably in the Emperor's service as one of the
Varangian Guard; and ships are built for a voyage to the East. But
both he and Harold are wrecked in "The Help" and "The Arrow," at
Gulberwick, south of Lerwick, on the Shetland coast, all on board,
however, being saved, and Ragnvald, as usual, making verses and fun of
it all, and of many other things.

At last in 1150 Ragnvald's and Eindridi's ships are "boun"[24] for
their eastern cruise, Eindridi, however, being wrecked off Shetland.
But he gets another ship, and, in 1151, they set sail for the East,
William, the bishop of Orkney, commanding one vessel. Passing down the
east coast of England and through the Channel to France, they reach
Bilbao[25] in Spain, where Ragnvald lands, and refuses to marry Queen
Ermengarde. Afterwards he rounds Galicia, where Eindridi's treachery
robs them of spoil in taking Godfrey's castle, beats through Niorfa
Sound (the Straits of Gibraltar); is deserted by Eindridi, sails along
Sarkland (Barbary), captures the Saracen ship Dromund, and burns her,
sells the prisoners in Barbary, but releases their prince, coasts
along Crete, lands at Acre, and bathes in Jordan on St. Lawrence's
Day, the 10th of August 1152. After a visit to Jerusalem they come
at last to Constantinople, where the Varangian Guard heartily welcome
them, although Eindridi, who has arrived there before him, tries to
set everyone against them; and Ragnvald finally returns to Bulgaria
and Apulia and Rome, and thence overland to Denmark and Norway.[26]

When Ragnvald reached Norway in 1153, he heard what had been going on
at home during his absence in the east. King Eystein of Norway, King
Harald Gilli's son, had seized Jarl Harold Maddadson, then a young
man of twenty, at Thurso, and made him swear allegiance to himself,
letting him go on his paying three marks of gold as his ransom. Then
Maddad, his father, Earl of Athole, died; and the widowed Margret,
Harold's mother, came north to Orkney, still dangerous, still
beautiful and attractive, especially to Gunni, Sweyn's brother, by
whom she had a child, for which Gunni was outlawed, a punishment which
alienated his brother Sweyn from Harold Maddadson.[27]

Erlend, only son of Harald Slettmali, and really entitled to the whole
earldom, obtained from his relative[28] King Malcolm, then a boy of
under twelve, through his powerful kin, a grant of half of the earldom
of Caithness jointly with Harold Maddadson, who objected to give
him half the Orkney jarldom unless King Eystein confirmed the grant.
Erlend then went to Norway to get it confirmed. Meantime Sweyn seized
a ship of Harold's; but, to help Erlend, tried to reconcile Harold to
him, as King Eystein (said Erlend) had given him half of Orkney. And
the half given to him was, he added, Harold's half.[29]

Sweyn and Erlend then force Harold, who had then just come of age, to
agree to give up this half, under duress, in order to secure his own
liberty, and the Orkney folk agree that Erlend shall have this half,
Ragnvald having the other. This, Sweyn knew, Harold would not stand,
and, as he drank at a feast with his house-carles in his castle in
Gairsay,[30] the wily Viking said, slily rubbing his nose, "I think
Harold is now on his voyage to the isles," a shrewd surmise which
proved correct in spite of the midwinter storm then prevailing.
Harold's expedition, however, failed, and he went back to Caithness to
raise a force to kill a man called Erlend the Young who had seized his
mother Margret and taken her by force to Shetland, where he fortified
Mousa Broch[31] and held her prisoner there. After a siege, Harold,
who had followed them, at last allowed their marriage, Erlend the
Young becoming his ally, and going that summer with his wife and
Harold to Norway. When that was heard in the Orkneys, Sweyn and Earl
Erlend went raiding off the east coast of Scotland and afterwards
a-viking to North Berwick, and got much plunder, and Harold returned
in the autumn to Orkney. In the winter Jarl Ragnvald came back from
the east to Turfness (Burghead), whence he went about Yule 1153 to
Orkney, to find that the Orkney-men want himself and Erlend, not
himself and Harold, as joint jarls over them.

Harold had then to fight for his own hand; and, finding that Earl
Erlend and Sweyn were in Shetland, he sought them out but missed them,
and afterwards, though he hated Jarl Ragnvald, tried to get him on his

We come to another Sutherland event, historically of the first
importance to us, in 1154.[32] "Jarl Ragnvald was then up the country
in Sutherland, and sat there at a wedding at which he gave his only
daughter and child Ingirid or Ingigerd, to Eric Stagbrellir," who, as
we have seen, as Audhild's son, had been brought up in Kildonan.
"News came to him at once that Earl Harold was come into Thurso.
Jarl Ragnvald, rode down with a great company to Thurso from the
bridal.[33] Eric was Harold's kinsman and tried to reconcile the

There was a fight in Thurso between their followers, Thorbiorn Klerk
instigating it, no doubt because after Eric's marriage with Ingigerd,
Ragnvald's daughter, he knew he could not hope to force Eric to give
up the Moddan lands in Strathnavern and in the upper valleys and
hills of Sudrland and Caithness, to which he had a claim. Thirteen
of Ragnvald's men fell in the fray, and he himself was wounded in the
face. Ultimately, the earls were reconciled on the 25th of September
1154, and about 1156 joined forces and went to Orkney against Sweyn
and Erlend, who pretended they were sailing for the Hebrides, but
put their ships about at Store[34] Point in Assynt, and after all but
seizing Jarl Ragnvald at Orphir in Orkney, captured his ships, though
he and Harold escaped, each in a small boat, across the Pentland Firth
to Caithness.[35] Returning thence, in Sweyn's absence for the night
they attacked Erlend, who had disregarded all Sweyn's warnings and
advice to keep a good look-out, off Damsey, near Finstown. In this
fight Jarl Erlend, the last descendant in the male line of Thorfinn
then alive, was slain, while drunk, his body being found next day
transfixed by a spear, and he left no issue to inherit his title
of earl or the other Moddan lands, left to him by Earl Ottar, which
probably devolved on Eric Stagbrellir in 1156, as he could hold them
against Thorbiorn Klerk.

All Erlend's success, if we are to believe the Saga, this portion of
which is written largely to glorify Sweyn, probably by his relative
Bishop Bjarni, had been arranged by Sweyn's really marvellous cunning;
and Ragnvald, no doubt feeling how dangerous an enemy Sweyn was, and
that he was backed by the Scottish king, immediately sent for him in
order to reconcile him to Harold. But Harold, soon afterwards, robbed
Sweyn's house in Gairsay; and Sweyn, in his turn, attacked the house
where Harold was, and nearly succeeded in burning him alive. Later on
Harold all but caught Sweyn off Kirkwall, but Sweyn gave him the slip,
by running his ship into a tidal cave in Ellarholm, off Elwick in
Shapinsay, in 1155, and disappearing till the coast was clear, when he
got away in a small boat.

Afterwards Sweyn and Earl Harold were reconciled, and Sweyn and
Thorbiorn Klerk and Eric Stagbrellir went on a viking cruise to the
Hebrides, and, after a great victory at the Scilly Isles, returned
with much booty to Orkney.[36]

In the year 1157 or 1158, Sweyn defeated Gilli Odran, steward of Earl
Ragnvald's lands in Caithness, who had fled to the west and was caught
in Murkfjord (possibly Loch Glendhu at Kylestrome in Eddrachilles) and
was slain there with fifty of his men by Sweyn.[37]

In 1158, Ragnvald and Harold went, as they did every year, to hunt
red deer and reindeer[38] in Caithness, their hunting ground being
probably near the Ben-y-griams, which lay on the way to Kildonan, or
Strathnaver, where Eric probably lived; and some think there are still
remains of walls used as a pen for driven deer on Ben-y-griam
Beg, though these are more probably the ancient ramparts of a
hill-fort.[39] When they landed at Thurso, they heard that Thorbiorn
Klerk was hiding and lying in wait in Thorsdale[40] in order to make
an onslaught on Ragnvald, if he got a chance. After riding with a band
of a hundred men, twenty of them mounted, they spent the night at a
place where there was what the Celts call an "erg" (_airigh_) but
the Norse call "setr," the modern sheiling. Next day, as they rode
up along Calfdale, Ragnvald was in advance of the party, and, at
a homestead called Force,[41] Halvard hailed him loudly by name.
Thorbiorn was inside the house, and burst out through an old doorway,
and dealt Ragnvald a great wound, and the jarl fell, his foot sticking
in his stirrup, when Stephen, an accomplice, gave him a spear thrust;
whereupon Thorbiorn, after dealing him another wound, and receiving
a spear thrust in the thigh himself, fled to the moor. Earl Harold at
first would not interfere; and though Magnus son of Havard Gunni's son
insisted, Earl Harold again declined to pursue Thorbiorn to the death,
but left Magnus to besiege him at Asgrim's Ergin or Shielings,[42] now
Assary, near Loch Calder, where, by setting fire to the hut in which
he was, his pursuers succeeded in smoking him out and killing him.
They then brought the jarl's body from Force to Thurso, and thence
took it over to Orkney, to be buried in the choir of St. Magnus'
Cathedral, which he had founded and built in his uncle's honour.

"Jarl Ragnvald's death was a very great grief, for he was very much
beloved there in the Isles, and far and wide elsewhere." It took place
on the 20th August 1158.

"He had been a very great helper," the Saga adds, "to many men,
bountiful of money, gentle, and a steadfast friend; a great man for
feats of strength, and a good skald" or poet. In 1192 he was canonised
as St. Ragnvald[43] with, it is said, full Papal sanction. Save during
Harold Maddadson's minority he was never Earl of Caithness, and then
had the title only as guardian of his ward Harold.

Ragnvald left a daughter, his only surviving child, Ingirid or
Ingigerd, whom as we have seen, Audhild's son, Eric Stagbrellir had
married four years before her father's death; and their children, who
come into the story afterwards, were three sons, Harald Ungi or Harald
the Young, Magnus nick-named Mangi, and Ragnvald, and three daughters,
Ingibiorg, Elin[44] and Ragnhild, all of whom, so far as the Saga
relates, died childless save Ragnhild, whose son by her second husband
Gunni, was Snaekoll Gunni's son, who about 1230 claimed the Ragnvald
lands in Orkney from Earl John, son of Earl Harold Maddadson,[45]
and complained that Earl John was keeping him out of his rights in
Caithness to Ragnvald's share of the earldom lands there.

After Thorbiorn Klerk's death, Olvir Rosta being "out of the story,"
Eric's children, who were mainly Norse in blood, were the only heirs
left in Caithness not only for Jarl Ragnvald's lands, but also for the
upper parts of the river valleys of Strathnavern and Ness, which the
Moddan family had held through the whole Norse occupation of Caithness
and Sutherland, along with the hill country in Halkirk and Latheron
and Strathnavern and probably also in Sutherland, lands on which few
Norse place-names are found, and which came to Eric through Audhild
his mother on the deaths of Earls Ottar and Erlend Haraldson without
issue. These lands would of right descend to Eric's eldest son, Harald
Ungi, and on his death without issue, to his brothers if alive, and,
failing them, to his sisters and their heirs, as happened in the case
of Ragnhild and her son Snaekoll Gunni's son, neither Ingibiorg
nor Elin receiving any share of this property, for reasons now
undiscoverable, but which we shall endeavour to explain later, by
presuming that one of them had died unmarried, or had married abroad,
while the other and her descendants were amply provided for otherwise
by marriage with Gilchrist, Earl of Angus.


_Harold Maddadson and the Freskyns._

After the death of Jarl Ragnvald in 1158, Harold Maddadson at the age
of twenty-five "took all the isles under his rule, and became sole
chief over them."[1] Ever since 1139 he had been sole Earl of Cat save
for Erlend Haraldson's grant,[2] though Jarl Ragnvald seems to have
had a share of its lands and managed the Earldom of Caithness for
Harold during his minority, bearing the title of his ward till the
latter attained his majority in 1154. Harold had married Afreka,
daughter of Duncan, Earl of Fife, one of the most loyal supporters
of the Scottish kings, and their children were two sons, Henry, who
afterwards claimed Ross, and of whom we hear no more, and Hakon, Sweyn
Asleifarson's foster-child, and two daughters, Helena and Margret, of
whom we hear nothing save their names. Hakon, from boyhood, went with
Sweyn on all his spring and autumn "vikings" or piratical cruises,
undertaken every year to the Hebrides, Man, and Ireland, in one of
which Sweyn took two English ships near Dublin, and returned to Orkney
laden with broadcloth, wine, and English mead.[3] Sweyn's life is
thus described in c. 114 of the _Orkneyinga Saga_. "He sat through the
winter at home in Gairsay, and there he kept always about him eighty
men at his beck. He had so great a drinking-hall that there was not
another as great in all the Orkneys. Sweyn had in the spring hard
work, and made them lay down very much seed, and looked much after it
himself. But when that toil was ended, he fared away every spring on a
Viking-voyage, and harried about among the southern isles and Ireland,
and came home after midsummer. That he called spring-viking. Then he
was at home until the cornfields were reaped down, and the grain seen
to and stored. Then he fared away on a viking-voyage, and then he did
not come home till the winter was one month spent, and that he called
his autumn-viking." At last, in a cruise to Dublin, which he captured,
Sweyn was killed by stratagem on landing to receive payment of its
ransom from the town, and the boy Hakon probably fell there with him
in 1171. "And," the Saga adds, "it is the common saying of Sweyn that
he was the most masterful man in the western lands, both of yore and
now-a-days, among those men who had no higher rank than himself."
Sweyn was, in fact the greatest man of his time. For he robbed whom
he pleased, made and undid jarls and earls as he chose, and was the
friend or tool of more than one Scottish king.

Earl Harold had put his wife Afreka away, and probably after Sweyn's
death formed a union, at a date which it seems impossible to fix, with
Hvarflod or Gormflaith, daughter of Malcolm MacHeth of Moray, who
was in rebellion in 1134, and was imprisoned in Roxburgh Castle
until 1157, when he was released and created Earl of Ross, so that
Gormflaith, who could hardly have been born during her father's
imprisonment, must have been born either before 1135 or after 1157.
Harold and Gormflaith's children were Thorfinn, who predeceased
him, and also David and John, both afterwards in succession earls
of Caithness and jarls of Orkney, and three daughters, Gunnhilda,
Herborga, and Langlif; and of the daughters the Saga-writers tell us
nothing, except that the Icelander Sæmund, Magnus Barelegs' grandson,
wished to marry Langlif but did not do so;[4] and her son Jon
Langlifson, according to the Saga of Hakon was in 1263 a spy on the
Norse side.

Here the _Orkneyinga Saga_ ends. But additions to its generally
received text are found in the _Flatey Book_,[5] and the additions
are by no means so trustworthy as the Saga proper. From these we learn
that of Eric Stagbrellir and Ingigerd's children, who were settled in
Sutherland, the sons, Harald Ungi, Magnus, and Ragnvald Eric's son,
fared east to Norway to King Magnus Erling's son, where young Magnus
Eric's son fell with that king in the battle of Norafjord in Sogn
in 1184.[6] Probably some of them were, on Eric Stagbrellir's death,
subjected to exactions in respect of their lands by Harold Maddadson.

Having arrived, under the guidance of the _Orkneyinga_, at the
closing years of the 12th century, so far as the affairs of Orkney and
Shetland and Sutherland and Caithness are concerned, it remains for us
to turn and observe the tide of civilisation and order which under our
Scottish kings was now setting strongly northwards and ever further
north in each successive reign, the Catholic Church and the feudal
baron being the chosen instruments of national organisation and
discipline, and the charter being the method of establishing them in
the land.

To this tide the Pictish and Columban Churches, and the Province of
Moray and its Maormors had formed the main barriers and obstacles; and
the Saxon nobility, introduced by the elder sons of Malcolm Canmore's
second queen, St. Margaret, had proved quite unable to break them
down. The Pict of Moray was obstinately hostile to the Scots, and
his leaders and rulers aspired to, and claimed the crown of Scotland
itself. Rebellion after rebellion took place, and it was not until
King David I had introduced the feudal baron with his mail-clad
tenants, and settled them on the land by charter, that any success in
establishing peace and civil order was achieved in the vast Pictish
province of Ross and Moray, which stretched across Scotland from the
North Sea to the Minch, and whose people resisted to the utmost.

It is not part of our purpose to treat generally of the feudal and
largely Norman families, which gradually asserted their power over
the Picts in the north, and were accepted as Chiefs, such as were the
Umphraville Earls of Angus, the Roses of Kilravock, the Chisholms
of Strath Farrer, the Bissets and Fresels or Frasers of Beauly, the
Grants of Moray and Inverness, and the Comyns of Badenoch; for none
of these held land north of the Oykel. But later on in the thirteenth
century we shall have more particularly to note the Chens or Cheynes
in Caithness, and the Scottish or Pictish family of Freskyn of
Strabrock and Moray, in its two branches, that of Hugo of Sutherland
and that of his grandson Freskin the younger in Sutherland and

Of Freskyn or Fretheskin I, the founder of the line, we have no
mention in any charter direct to him,[7] either of his Linlithgowshire
lands at Strabrock, or of his estate near Spynie in Moray with its
Castle at Duffus.

To us he is as Melchizedek; for neither his father nor his mother is
known. We believe him to have been born before 1100, and so to have
been a contemporary of Frakark, Thorbiorn Klerk, and Olvir Rosta, of
Jarl Ragnvald, of Margret of Athole, Erlend Haraldson and Sweyn, and
also of Harold Maddadson; and to have won his Duffus estate, as an
addition to his lands at Strabrock, about 1120 or at latest 1130,
before or after the crushing defeat, at Stracathro, of the Picts of
Angus and Moray; and between these dates to have built the Castle of
Duffus on the bank of Loch Spynie, in order to check Norse raids on
the Moray coast while the Norse held Turfness or Burghead; and we
know that he entertained King David I there during the whole summer of
1150, while that king was superintending the building of the Abbey of
Kinloss. From notices in a charter of King William the Lion granting
and confirming to Freskyn's son, William, his father's lands of
Strabrock in West Lothian and of Duffus, Roseisle, Inchkeile, Macher
and Kintrai,[8] forming almost the whole parish of Spynie, we believe
him to have been dead by 1166, or, at the latest, 1171, the year of
Sweyn Asleifarson's death, and we know that he held all these lands
from David I, with probably many more in Moray. Contrary to the
general impression, it seems probable that Freskyn had not one son,
but two sons, William above mentioned and also Hugo, who witnessed a
charter, not necessarily spurious, granting Lohworuora, now Borthwick,
Church to Herbert, bishop of Glasgow, about 1150. But of this Hugo's
existence we have no definite record, and of him we know nothing more
than that he witnessed the document above referred to, and one other
about 1195, namely, a Charter of Strathyla, in which the words occur
"Willelmo filio Freskyn, Hugone filio Freskyn" quoted by Shaw, page
406, App. No. xxvii, in the edition of 1775. This Hugo thus seems to
have been uncle of, and not identical with Hugo de Moravia, grantee of
Sutherland, known as Hugo Freskyn.

William, son of Freskyn, held those lands in West Lothian and Moray
probably until near the end of the twelfth century; and this William,
son of Freskyn, had at least three sons,[9] (1) Hugo Freskyn, the
ancestor of the de Moravias, or Murrays, of Sutherland, (2) William of
Petty, and (3) Andrew, parson[10] of Duffus, who appears in a writ as
a son of Freskyn, and as a brother of Hugo Freskyn of Sutherland.[11]
Andrew was alive in 1190, and lived probably till 1221, and has been
taken to have been the same person as Andrew Bishop of Moray who built
Elgin Cathedral. More probably he was that Bishop's uncle, and refused
the bishopric of Ross. He witnessed the great Charter of Bishop
Bricius founding the Cathedral at Spynie between 1208 and 1215. (Reg.
Morav. c. 39).

William, son of Freskyn, probably had several other sons from one of
whom were descended the Earls of Atholl.[12]

William, son of William, and so grandson of Freskyn, with whom, as he
was not interested in Caithness or Sutherland, we have nothing to do,
frequently appears as witness to charters in and after 1195 along
with his elder brother Hugo, whom in one charter, William being the
younger, is reported to call "his lord and brother."[13] This William,
son of William son of Freskyn, was lord of Petty, near Fort George,
and of Bracholy, Boharm, and Artildol, and died before 1226, leaving
an eldest son Walter of Petty, a cousin of Sir Walter of Duffus, and
from Walter of Petty are descended the great family, notorious in
Orkney, of Bothwell, his great-great-grandson having been Sir Andrew
of Bothwell, Wardane of Scotland, who died in 1338. William of Petty,
to whom and whose descendants we now bid adieu, was probably sheriff
of Invernarrin or Invernairn in 1204,[14] and uncle of another William
who became first earl of Sutherland.

In Hugo, the elder son of William son of Freskyn, we are deeply
interested. For, if his father "William son of Freskyn" had no grant
of Sutherland, Hugo Freskyn certainly had not only such a grant but
possession as well. Two Charters, the _Carta de Suthirland_ and _Alia
Carta Suthirlandiae_ appear in the list of documents in the Treasury
of Edinburgh in 1282, and one or both of these may have been the
original grant or grants of his Sutherland estate.[15] They may, on
the other hand, have been the later grants of the earldom, or still
later charters relating to it. They have, however, disappeared.

Notwithstanding their disappearance, ample evidence of the tenure of
the estate of Sutherland by Hugo Freskyn has been preserved until the
present day in the Charter-room at Dunrobin; and the documents are
happily as legible as they were over 700 years ago.

By a charter,[16] dated about 1211, Hugo granted to Master Gilbert,
Archdeacon of Moray and to those heirs of his family whom he should
choose and their heirs, all his land of Skelbo in Sutherland and of
Fernebuchlyn and Inner-Schyn, and also his whole land of Sutherland
towards the west which lay between the aforenamed land and the marches
of Ross, to be held to himself and to his own heirs for ever from the
granter and his heirs, performing for such lands the service of one
bowman and the forinsec service due to the king in respect of such
lands; and this grant was confirmed by King William the Lion (who
died in December 1214) on the 29th of April, probably in 1212, at
Seleschirche, now Selkirk, and was also confirmed by Hugo's son
William, Lord of Sutherland, about 1214.[17] This renders it certain
that Hugo himself had died before December 1214, the latest possible
limit of the date of this charter. He was buried in the Church of
Duffus, as the Register of Moray states,[18] and he can hardly have
been the Hugo who witnessed the Charter of the Church of Lohworuora
sixty-two years at least before, to which Prince Henry, who died in
1152, was a witness.[19] For Hugo of Sutherland would then have been
too young to have been selected as a witness, and he was not Hugo, son
of Freskyn (Hug. filio Fresechin), but Freskyn's grandson.

Hugo Freskyn of Sutherland had three sons, (1) William, great-grandson
of the original Freskyn, _dominus_ or Lord of Sutherland, and
afterwards first earl, (2) Walter, who succeeded to Strabrock in
Linlithgowshire and to Duffus and the family estates in Moray, which
were thus severed in ownership from Sutherland, and (3) Andrew. Walter
of Duffus married Euphamia, daughter of the most able and renowned
general of his time, Ferchar Mac-in-Tagart, Earl of Ross;[20] and
Walter was known as Sir Walter de Moravia, and lived till 1243, but
was dead by 1248, his widow surviving him, and later on we shall come
to another Freskin, their eldest son, (who was _dominus de Duffus_
on 20th March 1248), in Strathnaver and Caithness. Hugo's third son,
Andrew, was the parson of Duffus[21] who became Bishop of Moray,
and moved the see from Spynie to Elgin, where he erected a specially
beautiful Cathedral, the predecessor of that whose splendid ruins
still stand. According to the Chronicle of Melrose he died in 1242.

Hugo Freskyn's eldest son, William, Lord of Sutherland, was simply
"William de Sutherlandia" on the 31st August 1232, and "W. de
Suthyrland" appears as a witness to a grant of a mill on 10th October
1237. But William, Hugo's son, was by Alexander II created Earl of
Sutherland, as we hope to show, soon after 1237, probably as a reward
for long and loyal service to William the Lion and to Alexander II,
between the year 1200 and the date of his creation, in the various
difficulties and rebellions in Moray and Caithness, between which
two centres of disaffection his territory of Sutherland lay.[22] For
William's family had then its "three descents" and more, and its chief
had a sufficient body of retainers settled on the land to entitle
him to the dignity of an earldom. That he was earl there is no doubt,
because a deed of 1275 settling litigation between the Earl William
of that date and the Bishop of Caithness refers to William of glorious
memory and William his son, _earls of Sutherland, nobiles
viros, Willelmum clare memorie et Willelmum ejus filium, comites
Sutthirlandie_, (c.f. The Sutherland Book, p. 7).

The first four generations of the Freskyn family seem to be also
clearly proved in one line of a grant by William the Lion to Gaufrid
Blundus, burgess of Inverness, of 2nd May (year omitted) which is
attested "Willelmo filio Freskin Hugone filio suo et Willelmo filio
ejus," which is strange Latin, but embraces all four generations. It
is quoted in the New Spalding Club's Records of Elgin, p. 4, as from
Act Parl. Scot, vol. 1, p. 79. The Charter is dated at Elgin probably
near the end of the twelfth century, when William Mac-Frisgyn, Hugo,
and William of Sutherland were all alive. Not a single member of the
family was, as every Fleming was, styled "Flandrensis" in any charter
or writ, and Fretheskin is probably a Gaelic name, of which the latter
part may mean "knife" or "dagger." The name does not mean Flemish or

Having now introduced the various prominent persons in the north of
Scotland over seven hundred years ago, both on the Norse and on the
Scottish sides, let us now look more closely and in detail at the main
events which had been taking place there and elsewhere since the end
of the reign of David I, when his grandson Malcolm IV, known as The
Maiden, succeeded in 1153.

The first event in the brilliant reign of this boy king was the
invasion and plundering of Aberdeen by Eystein king of Norway about
1153,[23] in repelling which the feudal Barons of Moray and Angus,
including the first Freskyn of Duffus and his son William MacFrisgyn,
must have been of service. In the same year Somarled of Argyll and the
sons of MacHeth engaged in a joint rebellion, which lasted three years
until the eldest of them, Donald, was taken and placed as a prisoner
with his father in Roxburgh Castle, leaving Somarled to continue
the war alone. This war was put an end to by the release of Malcolm
MacHeth, who was created Earl, probably of Ross,[24] after another
civil war in Somarled's own country had called Somarled back to the
Isles; and the young king Malcolm joined Henry II of England in his
wars in France. During King Malcolm's absence abroad Fereteth, Earl
of Stratherne, and five other earls, of whom Harold Maddadson was
probably one, rebelled in 1160; and, on failing in an attempt to
kidnap the young king, who had returned to quell the disturbance,
the six earls were reconciled to him; and in the same year he subdued
another rising in Galloway, and yet another in Moray. The subjugation
of Moray is said to have been carried out with the greatest severity.
According to Fordun[25] the king "removed the rebel nation of Moray
men and scattered them throughout the other districts of Scotland,
both beyond the hills and this side thereof," though Robertson in his
_Early Kings_ expresses the opinion that this clearance took place
in the reign of David his predecessor.[26] He is probably right, but
whenever it took place, it doubtless gave Sutherland the first of its
Mackays, originally MacHeths, who were at first refugees from Moray,
and ultimately in the thirteenth century are found settled in Durness
in the north-western parts of the modern county of Sutherland. It was
at this time, too, that the Innes family, afterwards so well known in
Caithness and Sutherland, were, in the person of Berowald the Fleming,
given their lands in Moray,[27] William MacFrisgyn, Freskyn's eldest
son, and father of Hugo Freskyn of Sutherland, witnessing the charter,
a neighbourly turn which has ever since caused some to believe wrongly
that the Freskyns were Flemings.

Malcolm next defeated another rising by Somarled, who was killed in
1164, by treachery or surprise, in a skirmish at Renfrew,[28] and was
not Somarled the freeman, who is said in the _Orkneyinga Saga_ to have
been slain by Sweyn in the Isles, in his pursuit and defeat of Gilli
Odran in the Myrkfjord about seven years earlier.[29]

Then King Malcolm, after a short but brilliant reign, died in his
24th year. He was succeeded by his brother William the Lion, who was
forthwith crowned at Scone on Christmas Eve 1165 in his twenty-second

We may now try to state how things stood in the north at the date
of his accession. Soon after this time his grandfather's friend, the
first Freskyn, died between 1166 and 1171, and was succeeded by his
son William MacFrisgyn, whose son Hugo would then be quite young.
Harold Maddadson had in 1165 been for twenty-six years Earl of
Caithness, and Jarl of Orkney and Shetland for nineteen years jointly
with Ragnvald, and for seven years sole jarl of those islands.[30] He
had probably put away his first wife Afreka of Fife about 1165, but he
afterwards lived with Gormflaith, the daughter of Malcolm MacHeth from
a date which cannot be fixed with certainty. Led by her, it is said,
Harold was openly hostile to the Scottish king, of whom, however, he
held the earldom of Caithness, which at that time included not only
the parishes of Creich, Dornoch, Rogart, Kilmalie or Golspie, Clyne,
Loth, and most of Kildonan and of Lairg, then called by the Norse
Sudrland, but also the districts of Strathnavern, Eddrachilles, and
Durness (where Mackay refugees had not yet permanently settled) as
well as Ness, which is now known as the County of Caithness.

The diocese of Caithness, which then was co-terminous with the earldom
and comprised all the above districts which now form the modern
counties of Caithness and Sutherland, had in 1165 been in existence
for about thirty-five years; its chief church being at first at
Halkirk in Caithness and thereafter being the old Church of St. Bar
at Dornoch, but it was scantily endowed, and therefore its clergy were
but few.[31] Its Bishop was Andrew, a Culdean monk of Dunfermline,
and probably Abbot of Dunkeld, who had been promoted to the see of
Caithness before 1146, and died at Dunfermline on the 30th December
1184. Ingigerd, Earl Ragnvald's daughter, would at this time be
a young wife and mother living with some of the elder of her six
children, probably near Loch Naver, on part of the Moddan family lands
there with her husband, Audhild's son Eric Stagbrellir, until their
sons, Harald Ungi, Magnus, and Ragnvald, should grow up. But these
sons, possibly on their father's death, and certainly before 1184,
when young Magnus Mangi was killed[32] at the battle of Norafjord,
emigrated to Norway to obtain the Orkney jarldom about ten or fifteen
years after King William's accession; while of Ingigerd's daughters,
Ingibiorg, Elin, and Ragnhild, nothing is recorded at this time,
though Ragnhild appears later on, and one of her sisters is believed
to have married Gilchrist, Earl of Angus during the last twenty years
of the twelfth century. The other may have married in Norway, or died
young and unmarried.

All these children and their descendants successively according to
sex and seniority would have claims as being of the line of Erlend
Thorfinnson, to half the Caithness earldom and Jarl Ragnvald's lands
there, claims which, however, it would be impracticable, while Harold
Maddadson lived, to enforce.

Harold Maddadson's children by his first wife, namely Henry of Ross,
Hakon, Helena and Margaret would, in 1165, all be born, but would be
well under twenty-one, while of his second family, if Gormflaith was
born by 1135, which is unlikely, his eldest son, Thorfinn could have
been born, and some of the others. Thorfinn is mentioned by name in
a grant[33] of a silver mark per annum to the Church of Scone issuing
out of Harold's lands, of which the date is after 1166, but no one can
say how much before the 30th December 1184, the date of the death of
one of its witnesses, Andrew, Bishop of Caithness.

If the union with Gormflaith took place after 1174, no child of that
union would exist until 1175. That this is in fact true is rendered
more probable because their union is not mentioned in the _Flatey
Book_ until after the death of Sweyn in 1171. But the passage is of
doubtful authenticity, (see Rolls Edition p. 224), and inconclusive
even if genuine. From the various allusions to Harold's union with
Gormflaith, it would seem that Harold lived with her before he married
her for many years, but married her legally after his first wife
Afreka's death after 1198 when William the Lion stipulated that he
should take Afreka back, and the subsequent legal marriage might
in those days, under the Canon and Roman law, suffice to make
Gormflaith's children, though born in adultery, legitimate and capable
of succeeding to the earldom (see Dalrymple's Collections, p. 221).

In 1165 Sweyn Asleifarson, the great Viking, would be cruising on the
northern and western coasts with Harold's son, Hakon, on board, until
their deaths in Dublin in 1171.

As for those in authority, Harold Maddadson would have as
contemporaries, Freskyn of Duffus till his death between 1166 and
1171, and his son William till his death near the end of the 12th
century, when Hugo, son of William, would succeed to the Morayshire
estates, though probably he had previously obtained a grant of the
land then known as Sudrland or Sutherland, which is defined above.
Hugo probably received this grant after William the Lion's first
conquest of Sutherland and Caithness in 1196, shortly before the time
when, as we shall see, Harald Ungi obtained in right of his mother a
grant of half Orkney from the Norse king, and another from the king of
Scotland of half Caithness, and probably a confirmation of his title
to the Moddan lands in Strathnaver and in Halkirk and Latheron, to
which he was heir in right of his father and grandmother Audhild of
the Moddan line. But this half of Caithness would be conferred on
Harald Ungi subject to the prior grant of Sudrland to Hugo Freskyn.
For Harold Maddadson must, in the opinion of so eminent an authority
as Lord Hailes, have been forfeited in 1196, if not earlier, for
both he and his son Thorfinn were then in open rebellion against the
Scottish Crown.[34]

Further deprivations of lands, it is conjectured, must have attended
Harold Maddadson's later rebellions, and the events which must have
led to those deprivations may now be recounted, though it is very
difficult to reconcile Scottish and Norse records during the period.

In 1179 King William the Lion had marched an army into Ross, and
subdued it to his sway; and, ere he left it, caused two castles of
Eddirdovir on the site of Redcastle in the Black Isle on the Beauly
Firth, and of Dunskaith[35] on the northern Suter of Cromarty, which
is full of Norse remains, to be built, to enable him to hold his

Two years later he made war on Donald Ban MacWilliam, who claimed the
Scottish Crown itself, as the third son of William FitzDuncan only
son of Duncan II, who was himself the eldest son of Malcolm Canmore by
Malcolm's first marriage, so productive of civil war in Scotland, with
Ingibjorg, widow of Earl Thorfinn. Civil war ensued, and lasted for
six or seven years, when, by good luck, Roland of Galloway fell in
with a force of the rebels at an unknown spot called Mamgarvie near
Inverness, and routed them, killing Donald Ban MacWilliam there on the
31st July 1187.[36]

In 1196, Harold Maddadson, who through the ambition of Gormflaith
had, as we have seen, designs on Ross and Moray, sent an expedition
southwards to occupy those districts, of which probably Gormflaith's
father, Malcolm MacHeth, had been Earl at his death after 1160. But
William collected an army,[37] and, after defeating Harold's son
Thorfinn near Inverness, crossed the Oykel, entered Sutherland,
subdued it and Caithness, and pursued Harold up to his castle at
Thurso, and destroyed it in his sight. Harold then submitted, and
promised to surrender his son and heir, Thorfinn, as a hostage, with
others of his friends to be delivered to the king at Nairn. Harold
left all his hostages close by at Lochloy, and went alone to the king
at Nairn, and endeavoured to excuse himself by offering two grandsons
to the king and stating that Thorfinn was his heir[38] and could not
therefore be given up; but was taken prisoner himself and lodged in
Edinburgh Castle, till his son Thorfinn came to take his place. On
this occasion Harold Maddadson was deprived of Sudrland or Sutherland,
which had been given to Hugo Freskyn; and in the next year, or soon
after, half of the earldom of Caithness, which the _Flatey Book_
states Jarl Ragnvald had held,[39] was conferred by King William the
Lion on Harald Ungi or The Young, as grandson of Jarl Ragnvald, and
son of Eric, who, however, had to make good the grant by conquest.
Harald Ungi had, as stated above, already obtained a grant from King
Sverri of half Orkney by a visit to the Norwegian Court.

In order to enforce his rights under both these grants, Harald
Ungi collected a force, and, together with Sigurd Murt, and Lifolf
Baldpate, the first husband of his youngest sister Ragnhild, invaded
Orkney, while Harold the Old fled to the Isle of Man; but, on his
namesake following him thither, he doubled back to Orkney, and,
after killing all the adherents of his enemies there, crossed over to
Caithness with a strong force. In a pitched battle "near Wick," said
to have been fought at Clairdon near Thurso, he slew Harald Ungi,
and utterly defeated his army, in 1198.[40] Harold the Old then
endeavoured to make terms with the king, and offered him a large
sum for the redemption of Caithness. The king, however, attached as
conditions to any regrant, that the earl should put away Gormflaith,
the daughter of MacHeth, and take back his wife, Afreka of Fife, and
deliver up Laurentius, his priest, and Honaver, son of Ingemund,
as hostages.[41] The earl, on his part, refused the terms; and,
the earldom thus remaining forfeited, King William at once invited
Ragnvald Gudrodson, the great Viking king of the Sudreys and Man, and
then his friend and ally, to assemble a force and drive Harold out
of Caithness, promising to confer that earldom upon his general, if
successful in the campaign.

Ragnvald Gudrodson, it may here be noted, had, if we pass over his own
illegitimacy, in the absence of direct male heirs of Earl Hakon since
Erlend Haraldson's death in 1156, probably the best title to receive
a grant of the jarldom of Orkney and Shetland and the earldom of
Caithness of all the surviving descendants of Earl Thorfinn Sigurd's
son. For Ragnvald Gudrodson was the grandson of Ingibjorg, Earl
Hakon's elder daughter, while Harold Maddadson was the son of
Ingibjorg's younger sister, Margret of Athole. Ragnvald Gudrodson's
title was, but for his own illegitimacy (in spite of which he held his
own kingdom) equal, if not superior to that of all survivors of the
Erlend Thorfinnson line, which was now represented in the male line
only by another Ragnvald the son of Eric Stagbrellir, who would claim,
in default of male heirs of Jarl St. Magnus, through the female line
of Erlend Thorfinnson, as being descended successively from Gunnhild,
Erlend's daughter, her son Ragnvald Jarl and Saint, and Ingigerd his
only child. And there is no proof that Ragnvald Ericson was alive at
this date, or that he ever returned from Norway to prefer his claim.

Ragnvald Gudrodson forthwith collected a great army in Ireland and the
Sudreys and invaded Caithness,[42] and, meeting Harold Maddadson in
battle at Dalharrold,[43] where the River Naver issues from the loch,
drove him northwards down the strath to the coast, whence he escaped
to Orkney. The Saga says simply that Harold stayed in Orkney, and this
location of the battle near Achness rests solely on tradition, which,
however, in the Highlands, is often a solid enough foundation.

King William next conferred the earldom on Ragnvald Gudrodson, for,
it is said, a considerable sum of money, reserving his own annual

On receiving the earldom, Ragnvald Gudrodson left in charge of
Caithness six[44] stewards, of whom Lagmann Rafn was the chief,
and went back to the Isle of Man. Harold had one of these stewards
murdered by an assassin, and returned with a large force to Thurso to
punish the Caithness folk; and, when Bishop John interceded for the
people of his diocese, Harold, whom he had irritated by refusing to
collect the Peter's Pence which the Earl had given to Rome, would not
listen to him, but mutilated him, probably in 1201, nearly blinding
him, and all but cutting out his tongue, though afterwards the bishop
regained his sight and speech in some measure, and may have lived to
administer his diocese till 1213. It is noteworthy that Pope Innocent
III, in his letter of 1202, does not directly blame Harold for the
illtreatment of the bishop, but Lumberd, a layman, whose penance the
letter prescribes.

Harold then drove out the stewards, and they fled to the Scottish
king, who made the best amends he could to them,[45] and Rafn, the
Lawman, seems to have returned and to have lived and enforced the law
in Caithness until at least 1222.[46]

To punish Earl Harold, King William at once had Harold's son Thorfinn
blinded and so mutilated in Roxburgh Castle that he died there.
William also collected a large army and marched in person to
Eysteinsdal or Ousedale near the Ord of Caithness, and Harold, though
he is said to have brought together seven thousand two hundred men,
avoided battle and evaded the king's pursuit.[47] Harold also began
negotiations with King John of England and received a safe conduct for
a journey to England to see him.[48]

Later in the year Harold is said to have recovered his earldom through
the intercession of Bishop Roger of St. Andrews, for a payment of
two thousand pounds of silver, which Munch conjectures may have been
handed over to Ragnvald Gudrodson to replace the sum which he had paid
to the king for the earldom; and it is true that we hear no more of
Ragnvald in connection with Caithness, though he lived until 1229. At
the same time, we can hardly believe that Harold, as the _Flatey
Book_ says, received back "all Caithness as he had it before that
Earl Harald the Young took it from the Skot-king."[49] What happened
probably was, that Harold Maddadson, who had been stripped by King
Sverri of Shetland in 1195,[60] was allowed by King William in 1202 to
keep part of his Caithness earldom upon payment by its inhabitants of
a fine of every fourth penny they possessed. Otherwise his son David
could not have succeeded to any part of Caithness, as he undoubtedly
did, when, four years later, in 1206, his father's long and chequered
career of sixty-eight years in the earldom was closed by his death at
the age of seventy-three.

Ugly of countenance, but of great bodily strength and stature, crafty,
self-seeking, treacherous and wholly unscrupulous, he is still known
in the North as "the wicked Earl Harold," yet the Saga classes him
with Sigurd Eysteinsson and Thorfinn Sigurdson as one of the three
greatest of the Jarls and Earls of Orkney and Caithness.

On the mainland, no new earldom north of the Oykel was conferred on
anyone for a further period of thirty years. It was, in fact, neither
the policy nor, save in very exceptional cases, the practice of the
Scottish kings to grant earldoms to men with powerful followings
and vast territories;[51] for these made them, especially in remote
situations, almost independent rulers, and dangerous enemies, and it
was undesirable to increase their importance by additional dignities.
It was, on the contrary, usual by charter to create barons and other
military tenants, who should hold their lands, described in their
charters, by military service, in male succession direct from the
Scottish Crown, and liable to forfeiture for disloyal conduct. Nowhere
were military tenants so essential as they then were in the extreme
north of Scotland on lands immediately adjoining the territories of
Norse jarls owing double allegiance, and therefore of doubtful loyalty
to the Scottish Crown. For this reason also no part of the lands of
the Erlend line would be granted to the line of Paul, as an addition
to their own.

From what has been above stated, it will appear that we have treated
the well known history, intituled _The Genealogie and Pedigree of the
Earles of Southerland_ and written down to 1630 by Sir Robert Gordon,
Baronet of Gordonstoun, and continued by Gilbert Gordon of Sallach[52]
until 1651, as mere fiction as regards all persons before William,
first Earl. "Alane Southerland, Thane of Southerland," Walter "first
Earle," Robert, second earl, who is alleged to have founded "Dounrobin
Castell" were purely fictitious persons. "Hugh Southerland, Earle of
Southerland nicknamed Freskin" existed, but never was an earl, as Sir
Robert well knew, because he quotes charters right up to his death,
in which he was styled simply Hugo Freskyn. The _Sutherland Book_ also
wholly omits William MacFrisgyn, second Lord of Duffus and Strabroc,
the son and heir of Freskyn I and the father of Hugo. A revised
pedigree of the early generations of Freskyn's family will be found
in an Appendix to this book, and it is believed to be correct. At the
same time it is in conflict as to the first three generations with
so high an authority as the late Cosmo Innes, and Sir William Fraser
followed him. However this may be, it is abundantly clear, from
contemporary and undoubtedly authentic records still happily extant,
that in the twelfth century Freskyn de Moravia and his immediate
successors were the guardians appointed by one Scottish king after
another to protect the fertile coast lands of Moray and Nairn alike
against the race of MacHeth from the hills and the Norse invader from
the sea; and that on the extensive territories which they possessed,
they built stately castles and endowed cathedrals and churches
with lands and tithes, providing from their family not only high
ecclesiastical dignitaries to serve them, but distinguished soldiers
and administrators to give them peace; services which their successors
in the thirteenth century were, in their turn, destined to repeat and
continue in Sutherland, Strathnavern and Caithness, when the old Norse
earldom there had been broken up and effectively incorporated in the
kingdom of Scotland.


_Earls David and John._

On the death of Earl Harold Maddadson in 1206, he was followed in
the earldom of Orkney, without Shetland, by his elder surviving
son, David, who also, it would seem, was allowed to succeed to the
Caithness earldom and some of its territory. But out of the Caithness
earldom there had been taken the lands forming the Lordship of
Sudrland or Sutherland held by Hugo Freskyn from about 1196, and this
comprised, as already stated, the parishes of Creich, (then including
Assynt), Dornoch, Rogart, Kilmalie (now Golspie), Clyne, Loth, and
by far the greater part of the parishes of Kildonan and Lairg. Out of
these lands Hugo granted, as already stated, to his relative Gilbert
de Moravia, Archdeacon of Moray from 1204 till 1222, and to his heirs
and assigns whomsoever, all Creich and much of Dornoch parish up to
the boundaries of Ross, and the date of this grant was probably
about 1211. The Mackays were beginning to occupy the western parts of
Strathnavern, their title being probably their swords, and they held
their lands "manu forti," their country being a refuge for their
Morayshire kinsmen, the MacHeths, who were in constant rebellion. The
eastern portion of Strathnavern, and particularly the neighbourhood
of Loch Coire and Loch Naver, and all the Strathnaver valley were
probably insecurely held by members of the Erlend and Moddan family
after Harald Ungi's death at the battle of Clairdon in 1198; and
Gunni, probably a grandson of Sweyn Asleifarson, who had married
Ragnhild, Harald Ungi's youngest sister, after the death in the same
battle of Lifolf Baldpate, her first husband, became chief of the
Moddan Clan there and in Caithness. After 1200 Ragnhild had by Gunni
a son called Snaekoll Gunni's son, who thus became, on his father's
death, the chief representative in Scotland, both of the Moddan family
and of the line of Jarls Erlend Thorfinnson, St. Magnus, and St.
Ragnvald, and of Eric Stagbrellir and of Earl and Jarl Harald Ungi;
and Snaekoll afterwards laid claim to their possessions in Orkney,
as the sole male representative of this line. Gunni and Ragnhild
must have held the Strathnaver lands, and the Moddan family lands
in Caithness, formerly Earl Ottar's estates, till their deaths, and
Snaekoll was their sole known male heir. The Harald Ungi share of the
Caithness earldom lands, which _The Flatey Book_ and _Torfaeus_ state
that Jarl Ragnvald had held, does not appear to have been granted to
David, or to any successor to the Caithness earldom of his line, or to
any other person at this time. Indeed, the line of Paul were the last
persons to whom such a grant would be made.

It was, therefore, to a very much reduced territory and earldom that
David succeeded in 1206, as Earl of Caithness. We hear almost nothing
of him, save that for the latter part of the eight years of his
rule,[1] more or less inefficient probably through ill health, he
shared the earldom and what had been left to him of its lands with
his younger brother John. David died without issue in 1214[2] probably
soon after Hugo Freskyn, and David was succeeded by his brother John
in the jarldom of Orkney and in the reduced earldom of Caithness as
sole jarl and earl.

Immediately after David's death, King William the Lion, who had, in
1211, suppressed a rebellion in Moray of the Thanes of Ross under
Guthred son of Donald Ban MacWilliam whom a few years later he
captured and beheaded,[3] came to Moray again; and, about the 1st
of August 1214, King William demanded, and received[4] Earl John's
daughter, whose name is not known, as a hostage for her father's
loyalty, and a guarantee of the peace then made, under which John was
probably recognised as earl and as entitled to his reduced territory.
His daughter may, at this time, have been her father's sole heiress,
although she did not remain so, because we find that he had a son who
lived till 1226, called Harald. Meantime Bishop Adam, after the death
in 1213 of Bishop John, his half-blinded and mutilated predecessor,
succeeded to the Episcopal See of Caithness,[5] and seems to have
reversed Bishop John's policy of leniency to his flock by exacting
from them heavier and heavier tithes, as years went by.

In 1217, King Hakon's rival, Jarl Skuli, thought Earl John so
promising a traitor as to send him letters forged with the Norse
king's seal.[6] In 1218 John was present at Bergen to witness the
ordeal successfully undergone by King Hakon's mother in order to prove
that king, then a boy, to be her son by the late King Hakon Sverri's
son, and so rightly entitled to the Norwegian crown.[7]

After Earl John's return from Norway, the bishop's exactions of tithes
of butter reached such a pitch that the Caithness folk met near his
house at Halkirk, and demanded that the earl should protect them
against the bishop's rapacity, and, either at the earl's suggestion
or without any opposition on his part, they attacked the bishop in his
house, which was close to _Breithivellir_ (now Brawl) Castle,
where John lived. The Saga gives the following description of this

"They then held a Thing on the fell above the homestead where the earl
was. Rafn the Lawman was then with the bishop, and prayed the bishop
to spare the men; also he said he was afraid how things might go. Then
a message was sent to Earl John with a prayer that he would reconcile
the bishop and the freemen; but the earl would come never near the
spot. Then the freemen ran down from the fell and fared hotly and
eagerly. And when Rafn the Lawman saw that, he bade the bishop devise
some plan to save himself. He and the bishop were drinking in a loft,
and when the freemen came to the loft, the monk went out at the door;
and was straightway smitten across the face, and fell down dead inside
the loft. And when the bishop was told that, he answered, 'That had
not happened sooner than was likely, for he was always making our
matters worse.' Then the bishop bade Rafn tell the freemen that he
wished to be reconciled with them. But when this was told to the
freemen, all those among them who were wiser were glad to hear it.
Then the bishop went out and meant to be reconciled. But when the
worse kind of men saw that, those who were most mad, they seized
Bishop Adam, and brought him into a little house and set fire to
it. But the house burned so quickly that they who wished to save
the bishop could do nothing. Thus Bishop Adam died, and his body was
little burnt when it was found. Then a fitting grave was bestowed
on it,[9] and a worthy burial. But those who had been the greatest
friends of the bishop, then sent men to find the King of Scots.
Alexander was then King of Scots, the son of King William the Saint.
But when the king was ware of these tidings" (he took it) "so ill that
men have those miseries in mind which he wrought after the burning of
the bishop, in maiming of men and manslaying, and loss of goods and
banishment out of the land."

From the above account of the matter, it appears that Earl John, who
was responsible for law and order in Caithness at the time, although
invited by Rafn the Lawman to intervene, and although he was on the
spot, did nothing, saying "he could give no advice" and "that he
thought it concerned him very little," and adding that "two bad things
were before them, that it was unbearable" and that "he could suggest
no other choice,"[10] that is, but to pay the bishop's tithes, however
exorbitant, or not pay them, or possibly to make an end of him. It is
clear also that the monk who was with the bishop was to blame for his
exactions. But there is some excuse in the fact that Bishop John had
been censured by Rome for his neglect in collecting the dues of Rome
or Peter's Pence as greatly as Bishop Adam was blamed by the people of
Caithness for his greediness. There is no need to brand Bishop Adam as
a voluptuary for excessive drinking and immorality.[11]

These events took place in 1222, and King Alexander, urged by the
remainder of the bishops in Scotland, at once marched into Caithness
with an army, and took vengeance on the bishop's murderers by
mutilating a large number of those concerned and seizing their
lands,[12] while in 1223 the Pope excommunicated them and also
interdicted them from their lands.

The Annals of Dunstable, however, paint Earl John in much blacker
colours, and state that he himself caused the bishop, who was escaping
from the fire, to be cast into it again, and the bodies of two others
previously slain, his nephew and the monk, to be thrown upon him, and
that King Alexander forfeited half John's earldom.[13]

The Saga says that the king forfeited Earl John's lands for the murder
of the bishop. Wyntoun, however, states that afterwards, at Christmas
festivities at Forfar,

  "Thare borwyd that erle than his land
  That lay unto the Kyngis hand
  Fra that the byschape of Cateness,
  As yhe before herd, peryst wes."[14]

By this "borrowing," however, Earl John recovered only the reduced
earldom above described, that is without the Lordship of Sutherland,
to which William de Moravia, Hugo's son, had succeeded between 1211
and 1214, and without that south-western portion of it, which, as
stated, had been given to Gilbert de Moravia by Hugo in 1211, and
without the Moddan family's lands near Loch Coire and in Strathnaver
and Caithness, and without Harald Ungi's moiety or half share of the
Caithness earldom; and, as already stated, the lands appertaining
to this share were probably occupied by his family as represented by
Gunni and Ragnhild, Eric Stagbrellir's youngest daughter, and by the
members of the Moddan clan, and the retainers of the Erlend line.

In 1223, Earl John was again at Bergen, with Bishop Bjarni of Orkney
and others, to consider the rival claims of King Hakon and Jarl Skuli
to the Norse crown,[15] and in 1224 he went thither again to leave
his only son, Harald, as a hostage for his own loyalty.[16] In 1226,
Harald was drowned at sea, probably on his return voyage, thus leaving
John without any male heir, and save for his nameless hostage daughter
or her children, if any, without any direct lineal heirs for the
jarldom and earldom of Orkney and of Caithness respectively.

In 1228 John sent presents to the Norse king, and received in return a
good long-ship and many other gifts; and in 1230 John is found aiding
Olaf, King of Man, a friend of the Norse king, by giving him a like
vessel, "The Ox," to enable him to complete his voyage back from
Norway to his own kingdom, and in the same year John rendered
assistance to the Norse expedition, which had attacked the South
Hebrides, by harbouring its ships in Orkney on their voyage back to

From the above facts it is clear that Earl John, though he owed
allegiance to both kings, was more inclined to favour Norway than
Scotland, and that he was more constantly in attendance at the Norse,
than at the Scottish Court. At the same time it became more and more
likely that he would have to choose between his two masters, as war
for the Sudreyar or Hebrides was already certain to break out between
the two countries, and, save for civil war in Norway, would have
broken out at once.

Snaekoll[18] Gunni's son, as the sole male representative of the
Erlend Thorfinnson, St. Magnus, St. Ragnvald, Eric Stagbrellir and
Harald Ungi line remaining in Scotland, who had probably about this
time succeeded, or at least was recognised as next heir to the Moddan
family estates in Strathnaver and Caithness, approached Earl John in
1231, and demanded from him Jarl Ragnvald's lands in Orkney. But the
earl, who held Orkney in its entirety as the representative of the
line of Paul and of Harold Maddadson, who had seized it when Jarl
St. Ragnvald died in 1158, refused to give Snaekoll any part of those
lands; and Snaekoll, failing to obtain any redress, sought the aid of
Hanef, formerly a page, but now Commissioner in Orkney, of the Norse
King, and demanded his help in recovering his lands there. Snaekoll
and Hanef with a large following accordingly crossed the Pentland
Firth to Thurso to enforce the claim, but the earl again angrily
refused to restore the lands in Orkney, and it would seem that he was
also unwilling to let Snaekoll have his rights in Caithness.[19]

Each party occupied separate lodgings in Thurso with their separate
followings, and Hanef and his friends, warned by a messenger of the
earl's reported design of killing them, forestalled it by attacking
the earl first, and they slew him with nine wounds in the cellar of
his lodgings. After the affray they crossed over to Orkney, where they
fortified the small but massive castle[20] or tower of Kolbein Hruga
or Cobbie Row, in the Island of Vigr or Wyre, now called Veira, near
Rousay in Orkney, and provisioned it for a siege, which lasted the
whole winter, and was raised only after both sides had come to an
agreement that all questions arising out of the earl's death at
Thurso, should be referred, not to the Scottish courts, but to the
Norse king, Hakon, in Bergen.

Both parties, with their witnesses, accordingly crossed the North
Sea in 1232, and Hakon heard the case, and punished the partisans
of Snaekoll, some with death and others with imprisonment. Snaekoll
himself, who, as the heir of Jarl Ragnvald, was too valuable a pawn to
be sacrificed, was retained, and lived long in Norway with Earl Skuli,
and afterwards with King Hakon.[21] It is noteworthy that a _gaedinga_
ship (no Jewish Ship,[22] as Torfaeus states, but a ship of the
_gaedingar_ or _lendirmen_ of the Earl of Orkney) was, on the return
voyage, lost at sea; and, bearing in mind the large number of Orkney
notables who had been slain at the battle of Floruvagr in Norway in
1194, men of means and standing must have been scarce in Orkney for
long after this time.

There is a tradition mentioned by Alexander Pope of Reay,[23] the
translator of the _Orcades_ of Torfaeus, that Snaekoll, being deprived
of his rights in Orkney by King Hakon, returned late in life to
Caithness, where the Norse King could not deprive him of anything, and
lived in that county at Ulbster. If so, why did he return?

The answer brings us to a mysterious lady, who is known to us through
a charter[24] of May 1269 preserved in the _Registrum Episcopatus
Moraviensis_ or Chartulary of the Bishopric of Moray, and who is
called therein _nobilis mulier domina Johanna_, the then deceased wife
of Freskin de Moravia, Lord of Duffus, who had died before her. From
her name of Johanna this lady is stated to have been a daughter of
Earl John, amongst others by so eminent an authority as the late Mr.
William F. Skene in a paper "on the Earldom of Caithness," first read
to the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland on the 11th March 1878,
which is reprinted as Appendix V to the Third Volume of his _Celtic
Scotland_ at pages 448 to 453, and the lady is generally known as Lady
Johanna de Strathnavir; and on her descent much subsequent history

Skene's conclusion is that the half of Caithness which afterwards
belonged to the Angus earls was that half usually possessed by the
line of Erlend Thorfinnson, and that Joanna (or Johanna) was Earl
John's daughter, and, as such, inherited the Paul share of the earldom
and brought it to Freskin de Moravia, when he married her, without the

We doubt the accuracy of this conclusion, for reasons which, however,
rest not on direct evidence, but, like those given in Mr. Skene's
paper, on mere probabilities; and we hold that the converse is true,
and that Johanna was no daughter of John, and that it was the Erlend
half of the Caithness earldom lands that went to her and her husband
Freskin de Moravia of Duffus, while the moiety of Paul, in our
opinion, remained with a nameless daughter of John, and went along
with the title of Earl of Caithness, to her husband Magnus, and so to
the Angus earls of Caithness, though the lands which went with it were
then much curtailed in extent.

But it must be remembered that, in the absence of records, any
solution of this difficult problem at present rests on mere
speculation and guesswork, and the opinions expressed here must
be accepted as mere conjectures unsupported by direct contemporary
evidence, and based only upon reasonable probability.

We propose to attempt to deal with this difficult subject in the next


_The Succession to the Caithness Earldom._

After the death of Earl John in 1231, we come to a most perplexing
time, and it is almost impossible to discover a way out of the maze
of genealogical difficulties in which we find ourselves involved. Not
only is there no chronicle of the period, but there are hardly any
records at all to help us. The pedigree of the descendants of Earl
Harold Maddadson, and particularly of his daughters, who are named in
the _Orkneyinga Saga_, ceases;[1] and that of Earl John's family and
of Harald Ungi and his sisters downwards stops also, save in the case
of Ragnhild, the youngest of them, whose son Snaekoll Gunni's son
is mentioned as claimant in 1231 from Earl John of certain lands in
Orkney and in Caithness as well.

Attempts to clear up the mystery have been made,[2] but none of them
have resulted in any certain or trustworthy conclusions. Nor can
anyone now expect to fare much better; for not only are authentic
pedigrees of the Caithness earls and the materials for framing them
undiscovered or non-existent, but yet another pedigree, namely that of
the Angus line, which provided, from its male members, successors to
the title and to a moiety of the Caithness earldom, is very obscure.

This chapter, therefore, is largely conjectural, and must be accepted
as such. It deserves, and will doubtless receive, severe criticism.

So far as the Angus pedigree can be ascertained, it appears that Earl
Gillebride died about 1187, leaving two sons, Adam and Gilchrist, who
succeeded in turn to that earldom, and Gillebride also left a third
son, Gilbert,[3] a fourth, William, and a fifth, Angus, who had a son
Gillebert or Gillebryd. Gilchrist died about 1204, leaving an eldest
son, Duncan, Earl of Angus, and another son called Magnus, by his two
wives respectively, his second wife, from the name of Magnus given to
her eldest son and to many subsequent earls of that son's line, being
assumed with considerable probability to have been, not a sister of
Earl John, but a sister of Harald Ungi, either Ingibiorg or Elin.
Duncan died about 1214, and left a son, Malcolm, Earl of Angus, whose
sole heiress was a daughter, Matilda, who, about 1240, married, first,
John Comyn, who was killed in France shortly after the marriage,
without leaving issue to inherit. As her second husband, Matilda,
Countess of Angus married Gilbert d'Umphraville, Lord of Prudhoe and
Redesdale in Northumberland in 1243; and their son, also named Gilbert
d'Umphraville, was born about 1244, and succeeded his father as Earl
of Angus in 1267, and though both these Gilberts became successively
Earls of Angus,[4] neither of them ever became Earl of Orkney.
Robertson's contention in his _Early Kings of Scotland_, (vol. II, p.
23 note) that they were grafted on the wrong pedigree seems justified
by the discrepancy in dates; for the Icelandic Annals give only one
Gibbon who died in 1256, and we know that Magnus III was earl in 1263
and till 1273. Indeed little confidence can be reposed in the Diploma
of the Orkney Earls, the only authority for the existence of two
Orkney Earls called Gilbert, and in the period covered by the
_Orkneyinga Saga_, we can prove many errors in the Diploma.

Of Magnus son of Gilchrist, Earl of Angus, we know something. He was
alive in 1227, when he attested the record of the perambulation of the
boundaries of the lands of the Abbey of Aberbrothock,[5] and in the
List of the Oliphant family charters dated 1594 in the Register House
in Edinburgh there is an entry of "Ane charter under the Great Seill
made be Alexr to Magnus sone to Gylcryst sometime Earle of Angus of
the Erledome of South Caithness" which included Berridale and lands
which Magnus' granddaughter's great-grandson Malise II conveyed to
Reginald Chen III, known as "Morar na Shein," after 1340.

It has been suggested that after Earl John's death in 1231, the
successor to the earldom of Caithness was a minor, which Earl
Gilchrist's son, Magnus, could not have been in 1231, and that this
minor and ward was a son of Magnus, and bore the same name as his

The wardship seems at first sight to be proved in Robertson's _Early
Kings_,[6] and the proof is to the following effect:--Malcolm of Angus
attested a charter in Earl John's lifetime on 22nd April 1231, using
his own title of "Angus" only. After John's death, Malcolm attested
another charter on 7th October 1232 as "M. Comite de Anegus et
Katania,"[7] using, in addition to his own title of Angus, as was
customary, the title of a ward, who was heir to another earldom, in
this case that of Caithness. But on 3rd July 1236, Malcolm Earl of
Angus, who lived till 1237 if not longer, attested a third charter
using his own title of "Angus" only, without the addition "and of
Caithness." These facts can be explained by his ward's having attained
his majority and entered upon his earldom of Caithness between 7th
October 1232 and 3rd July 1236. They cannot be explained by saying
that "M" was not Malcolm, but Magnus, and that "M" stands for
Gilchrist's son Magnus, who had become Earl of Caithness. For there
was no "M. Comes de Angus" at the time save Malcolm, and Malcolm was
therefore for about four years Earl of Caithness as well as of Angus.

Robertson's explanation is that Malcolm was Earl of Caithness only as
guardian of a ward entitled to that earldom. The question then
arises, as Robertson puts it, "who was the heir?" and he answers it,
"certainly not his[8] uncle Magnus, son of Gillebride,[9] but very
probably the son of Magnus by Earl John's daughter; the supposed grant
of the Earldom to this Magnus being probably grounded upon his real
marriage with the heiress," and he adds "If, on the death of Earl John
in 1231, his grandson was an orphan and a minor, his wardship would
naturally have been granted to the next of kin, his cousin the Earl of

One further charter has to be dealt with. In _Reg. Hon. de Morton_,
vol. I, p. xxxv, cited in _Origines Parochiales_ vol. II, p. 805, a
grant by King Alexander II, to Patrick Earl of Dunbar dated 7th July
1235 is attested by a witness, whose name or initial is illegible, but
who is styled ... _Earl_ ... _Katanay_, ... _Comite_ ... _Katanay_,
and a confident opinion is expressed in a note to the citation that
the witness was Magnus, Earl of Caithness. Now, Earl John's daughter
was taken as a hostage on August 1, 1214, and, if she was then
marriageable and was married at once, her eldest child could have been
born about May 1215, and would attain twenty-one about May 1236, but
to suppose her son of the name of Magnus to have been the ward for
whom the Earldom of Caithness was being kept till 7th July 1235 from
1232 and that he had become Earl of Caithness on the 7th July 1235
seems impossible. If the blank should be filled up with "de Anegus
et," then Malcolm Earl of Angus must still have been the guardian, and
the ward's father and mother must both have been dead by 7th October
1232. This involves three unproved assumptions, of two unrecorded
deaths and one unrecorded birth.

On the whole, therefore, we believe that there is another and simpler
explanation, and it seems probable that there was in this case no
wardship, or if there was, that there was a great deal more, and that
Malcolm held the earldom of Caithness as _Custos_ or administrator or
trustee for the Crown for four years after Earl John's death till the
succession was settled, and till all Caithness except Sutherland was
parcelled out among three claimants, namely the two heirs, each of one
of two sisters of Harald Ungi, and the hostage daughter of Earl John.

When all this was settled, Magnus, as the son of one of the two
elder sisters of Harald Ungi, and also as the husband of Earl John's
daughter, would be entitled on Earl John's death, _jure maritae_,
in Orkney, to a grant from the Norse king of the Orkney jarldom,
and also, in Caithness, _first, jure maritae_, to a grant from the
Scottish king in or after 3rd July 1236, of the North Caithness
earldom and lands held by Earl John, which Dalrymple in his
Collections (p. lxxiii) states positively, without quoting his
authority, that Magnus had for a payment of £10 per annum, and,
_secondly, jure matris_ (Ingibiorg or Elin) to a grant, also from the
Scottish king, of the earldom of South Caithness, which by the Charter
of Alexander "under the greit Seill," above alluded to, Magnus also

The other moiety of the Caithness earldom lands would be fairly given
to Johanna as heiress of Ragnhild, Harald Ungi's youngest sister, and
we know that Johanna got that other moiety, because we find that her
descendants inherited it, and conveyed it or parts of it by writs
still extant, by the description of "half Caithness."

There are, however, other views. Skene's opinion on the subject of the
succession, in his very able paper (given in Appendix V, vol. iii, pp.
449-50 of his _Celtic Scotland_), is as follows:--

"Earl Harald died in 1206, and was succeeded by his son David,
who died in 1214, when his brother John became Earl of Orkney and
Caithness. Fordun tells us that King William made a treaty of peace
with him in that year, and took his daughter as a hostage, but the
burning of Bishop Adam in 1222 brought King Alexander II down upon
Earl John, who was obliged to give up part of his lands into the hands
of the king, which, however, he redeemed the following year by paying
a large sum of money, and by his death in 1231 the line of Paul again
came to an end.

"In 1232, we find Magnus, son of Gillebride, Earl of Angus, called
Earl of Caithness, and the earldom remained in this family till
between 1320 and 1329, when Magnus Earl of Orkney and Caithness, died;
but during this time it is clear that these earls only possessed one
half of Caithness and the other half appears in the possession of the
De Moravia family, for Freskin, Lord of Duffus, who married Johanna,
who possessed Strathnaver in her own right, and died before 1269, had
two daughters, Mary, married to Sir Reginald Cheyne, and Christian,
married to William de Fedrett; and each of these daughters had one
fourth part of Caithness, for William de Fedrett resigns[11] his
fourth to Sir Reginald Cheyne,[12] who then appears in possession
of one-half of Caithness (Chart. of Moray; Robertson's Index). These
daughters probably inherited the half of Caithness through their
mother Johanna. Gillebride[13] having called one of his sons by the
Norwegian name of Magnus, indicates that he had a Norwegian mother.
This is clear from his also becoming Earl of Orkney, which the king of
Scots could not have given him. Gillebride died in[14] 1200, so that
Magnus must have been born before that date, and about the time of
Earl Harald Ungi, who had half of Caithness, and died in 1198. Magnus
is a name peculiar to this line, as the great Earl Magnus belonged to
it, and Harald Ungi had a brother Magnus. The probability is that the
half of Caithness which belonged to the Angus family was that half
usually possessed by the earls of the line of Erlend,[15] and was
given by King Alexander with the title of Earl to Magnus, as the son
of one of Earl Harald Ungi's sisters, while Johanna, through whom the
Moray family inherited the other half, was, as indicated by her name,
the daughter of John, Earl of Caithness of the line of Paul, who had
been kept by the king as a hostage, and given in marriage to Freskin
de Moravia."

Sir William Fraser[16] in a note to the _Sutherland Book_--a mere
_obiter dictum_, however--doubts Skene's suggestions "that Johanna,
Lady of Strathnaver, who married Freskin de Moravia, Lord of Duffus,
about 1240, was the daughter of John Haraldson," that is Earl John,
and that "Magnus of Angus was the son of a sister of a former Earl
of Caithness," and states that "Skene's arguments are plausible, but
there is no very good evidence in support of them." Skene's argument
rests mainly on the names "Johanna" and "Magnus," by itself an
insecure foundation, and one which it is hoped to explain or remove,
adopting the argument from "Magnus," a name which constantly recurs,
and rejecting the argument from "Johanna," a name which never again
appears, in this family.

A century or more after the death in 1231 of Earl John, we find
Reginald Chen III, known as Morar na Shein or "Lord" Schen, in
possession of a moiety of the Caithness earldom, without the title,
and living in Latheron and Halkirk parishes, while the other moiety
was held by the Caithness Earls of the line of Angus, and in 1340 we
find Reginald More, Chamberlain of Scotland, ancestor of the Crichton
or Sinclair Earls of Caithness, acquiring from Malise II, one of the
Stratherne Earls of Caithness and a descendant of the line of Paul
and also of the line of Erlend, part of south Caithness (including
Berridale), which therefore Reginald Chen III did not then own or
acquire, though he owned half Caithness. But Reginald Chen III did
acquire Berridale and other lands later in David II's reign according
to _Origines Parochiales_, II, p. 764.

Now it is known from other sources that Reginald Chen III was a
grandson of Johanna of Strathnaver, the mysterious lady of unrecorded
parentage already referred to, who owned land in "Strathnauir," and
who was dead in 1269, and who had married, at a date which we hope to
fix, Freskin de Moravia, Lord of Duffus, then also dead, and had
had by him two daughters, Mary and Christian, who were married
respectively to Reginald Chen II and William de Federeth I (whose sons
respectively were Reginald Chen III and William de Federeth II)
and these ladies succeeded each to one fourth of Caithness; and a
grant,[17] which was made in David II's time by William de Federeth II
in favour of Reginald Chen III, placed him in possession of William de
Federeth II's quarter of Caithness. Reginald Chen III thus had all the
half share of Caithness which was held by his grandmother, Johanna of
Strathnaver. We also know that by another grant in 1286[18] William
de Federeth I had already conveyed to Reginald Chen II four davachs of
land in Strathnaver and all his other lands there; and, besides these
grants, we have authentic record in May 1269, which recites that Lady
Johanna had before that date granted a considerable part of her lands
in Strathnaver to the Bishop of Moray for the maintenance of two
chaplains to minister in the Cathedral of Elgin.

By the above record, which is a regrant of the Strathnaver lands by
Archebald Bishop of Moray in May 1269 to Reginald Chen II, not only is
his marriage before that date to Mary daughter of Johanna by Freskin
de Moravia proved, but the lands in Strathnaver are identifiable. They
were "Langeval and Rossewal, tofftys de Dovyr, Achenedess, Clibr',
Ardovyr and Cornefern," which now are known in part as Langdale,
Rossal, Achness, Clibreck and Coire-na-fearn, while "tofftys" are
"tofts," and "Dovyr" and "Ardovyr" are respectively old Gaelic for
"water" and for "upper water." "Dovyr" would denote the River Naver
and loch of that name, and "Ardovyr" would mean Loch Coire and the
Mallard River, that is the "Abhain 'a Mhail Aird" of the Ordnance Map
(whatever that may mean),[19] which rises in Loch Coire, and, after a
course of six miles from its upper valley, falls about 330 feet below
its source into the River Naver at Dalharrold. These lands of the Lady
Johanna lay partly to the south of Loch Naver, extended southwards
nearly to Ben Armine, and stretched westwards to Loch Vellich or
Bealach and the Crask and Mudale, eastwards to Loch Truderscaig, and
northwards down the valley of the Naver at least as far as Syre.
Part of them, close to Achness,[30] is to this day known locally as
Kerrow-na-Shein, or Chen's Quarter, either after Johanna's son-in-law,
Sir Reginald Chen II, or after her grandson of the same name, the
great "Morar na Shein," about whom so many legends still survive in
Cat. These lands in Strathnaver are roughly hatched on the map of Cat
in this volume, and, as she gave them away in charitable trust,
they probably formed only a small part of her whole estate after her
marriage with Freskin de Moravia, which probably comprised the old
Parish of Farr, now divided into Tongue, Farr, and Reay.

It is suggested that the ownership of these lands in Strathnaver and
of the other upland territories in Halkirk and Latheron parishes, held
by her descendants and sequels in all her estate, the Chens, connects
the Lady Johanna with the family of Moddan "in dale" in Caithness
and with Earl Ottar, and with Frakark and Audhild her niece, and that
Johanna was entitled to these lands in their entirety in her own right
as the sole descendant remaining in Scotland after 1232 of Harald
Ungi's younger surviving sister Ragnhild, possibly through her son
Snaekoll by Gunni, and that Snaekoll was next heir to these lands
before he went abroad, and either that he was Johanna's father, or
that she became Ragnhild's heir in his place. In this way Johanna
would have a good right, especially if Magnus, son of Gilchrist, had
been compensated for his mother's share by receiving a grant of South
Caithness and its earldom, to receive a grant of the rest of the
Harald Ungi half share of the Caithness earldom, lands previously held
by Jarls and Earls St. Magnus and Erlend Thorfinn's son or some lands
of equal value, and the reason why she had such very large estates as
those which she brought to her husband and the Chen family as their
successors would be made clear. For she would have completed her title
to a large share of the Erlend lands, and also to the Moddan lands
which Gunni and Ragnhild had entered upon and held after the elder
sister of Ragnhild had left Caithness on her marriage with Gilchrist
Earl of Angus.

In support of Johanna's title it is to be observed that neither
Magnus II, nor his wife, is recorded to have claimed any part of
the Strathnaver lands, a fact which indicates that Johanna and her
predecessors had acquired an independent title to them, and that, too,
a title not derived through Earl John. Again, (though in a time when
records fail us, the argument proves little) Johanna, although from
her probable date she might have been so, is not recorded to have
been a daughter of John. Further, to be of suitable age[21] to marry
Freskin she must have been born long after any known child of Earl
John, even his son Harald who had died in 1226. Lastly, neither
Johanna nor her husband Freskin nor any descendant of hers ever
claimed either the whole of or any share in the Orkney jarldom,[22]
which Earls Harald Maddadson, David and John had held in its entirety,
and to which Johanna, had she been Earl John's only daughter, or her
husband Freskin would have been entitled to claim to succeed as sole
heir; while if John had had two daughters, and Johanna had been one of
them, she or her husband Freskin would have been entitled to claim a
grant of some share at least of the lands appertaining to the Orkney

It was, however, Earl Magnus who made such claims, and with success,
and he may well have obtained the Orkney jarldom and lands, and part
of the Caithness earldom as well, with the title, not only as being
the son of the elder of Harald Ungi's sisters, but as the husband of
Earl John's nameless daughter, while his name of Magnus, afterwards
so often repeated in the Angus line, came into that line obviously
through his mother at his baptism, and not through his wife at his

The name of Johanna, on which Skene mainly founds his assertion that
Johanna of Strathnaver was Earl John's daughter, is just as easily
explicable, and with equal verisimilitude, if she was not. Snaekoll
went to Norway in 1232, leaving behind him, on our hypothesis, one
child, an infant daughter of tender years, or possibly as yet unborn.
The child of a younger child of Ragnhild would probably be still
younger. Heiress to very large landed estates and justly entitled to
claim a moiety of the Erlend Thorfinnson half of Caithness and all the
Moddan territories, this child would be made by the king of Scotland
a ward, to be married, if female, in due course to a suitable husband.
The Queen of Scotland, who in 1232 had been childless for eleven years
and never had any children afterwards, was an English princess who was
married to Alexander II on 19th June 1221, and lived till 4th March
1237-8, a period which would cover all Johanna's early years. The
queen's name was Joanna, and Johanna of Strathnaver may have been
called after her, as Earl John had possibly been called after her
father King John of England, the friend of Earl John's father, Harold

We now have to fix the date of Freskin de Moravia, nephew of William,
_dominus Sutherlandiae_ since about 1214. Freskin, as stated, was
undoubtedly the husband of Johanna of Strathnaver, and became on
his marriage owner of her lands there as well as of a moiety of the
Caithness earldom lands.

Freskin was, as also stated, the eldest son of Walter de Moravia of
Duffus, second son of Hugo Freskyn of Strabrock, Duffus and Sutherland
by Walter's marriage with Euphamia, probably, from her name, a
daughter of Ferchar Mac-in-tagart, who became Earl of Ross.[23] As
Ferchar granted[24] certain lands at Clon in Ross about the year 1224
to Freskin's father Walter de Moravia of Duffus without pecuniary
or other valuable consideration, it has been concluded, probably
correctly, that this grant was made on the occasion of the marriage
of Walter to Ferchar's daughter Euphamia; and Freskin, their heir, was
born in or after 1225, and had become _dominus_ de Duffus by 1248 on
his father's death. Johanna, on our hypothesis, would have to be born
by 1232 at latest, that is, before or soon after her supposed father
Snaekoll went to Norway, and from her supposed father's date she could
hardly have been born before 1225. Snaekoll's date can be ascertained
with comparative accuracy. For his mother lost her first husband,
Lifolf Baldpate, only in 1198, at the battle of Clairdon, and she can
hardly have married Snaekoll's father, Gunni, much before 1200. From
these dates Snaekoll could have been born by 1201, and married in
Scotland between 1224 and 1231, and Freskin and Johanna would thus
be of very suitable ages to marry each other, and their marriage
therefore would take place after 1245, or possibly as late as 1250. If
Johanna was the daughter of a younger child of Ragnhild, she might be
born later than 1225.

This would involve a long minority for Johanna, and by reason of her
marriage with Freskin de Moravia in 1245 or later, we suspect that
Freskin's uncle, William _dominus Sutherlandiae_, whose territories
were bounded on the north and east by her lands, was her guardian,
an office whose duties the head of the powerful and loyal House
of Sutherland alone could efficiently perform in the troublous and
turbulent times of her minority.

From Bain's _Calendar of Documents_ relating to Scotland[25] we know
that Freskin was one of the signatories of the National Bond of mutual
alliance and friendship with Sir Llewelin son of Griffin, Prince of
Wales, and other leading Welshmen on the 18th of March 1259. Freskin
would not have been asked to sign a document of such international
importance unless, like another of its signatories, Sir Reginald Chen
I (whose son of the same name, Reginald Chen II, married Freskin's
daughter, Mary of Duffus, later on) he had been one of the leading men
of his time in Scotland. We also find that his rights were saved in a
charter of 11th April 1260 and that on 13th October 1260 he was one of
the three vice-gerents of Alexander Comyn, Earl of Buchan, Justiciar
of Scotland, present in Court at Perth on that date.[26]

On the 16th March 1262-3 from a grant of two chaplains[27] for the
weal of the soul of the deceased Freskin of Moray, Lord of Duffus, we
know that he had died before that date, that is, probably before his
fortieth year. Freskin, then, died after 13th October 1260 and before
16th March 1262-3, and was buried in the chapel of St. Lawrence in the
Church of Duffus, which he had founded and endowed with lands at
Dawey in Strath Spey, and Duffus. His wife Johanna ("quondam sponsa"
"quondam Friskyni de Moravia") was certainly dead in May 1269 (Reg.
Morav., ch. 126, p. 139).

They left no male heir, but they left two daughters, Mary and
Christian, both minors at their father's death and probably too young
to have been married in August 1263, when, as we shall find, their
lands and their half share of the Caithness earldom sadly needed
defenders from Norse invaders.

Owing to subsequent additions of territory, it is impossible at the
present time to say exactly what all the lands owned by an independent
title by Lady Johanna of Strathnaver were, but some guidance towards
the further identification of her lands in Caithness is found in the
fact that later charters give the names of the lands which her sequel
in all her estate, Reginald Chen III, known as "Lord Schein" or "Morar
na Shein" held,[28] and that he lived in and hunted from a castle at
the exit of the river Thurso from Loch More above Dirlot or Dilred
in Strathmore in Halkirk parish, but never owned Brawl, a capital
residence of the Caithness earls, but did own to the end of his life
"half Caithness," and acquired South Caithness after 1340 by purchase.
Adding to this the facts, indications, and probabilities alluded to in
this and preceding chapters as to the position of lands in Caithness
variously owned, we are able to venture to come to a general
conclusion as to the devolution of the Caithness earldom and lands.

This conclusion is, that what may be termed the shares of the
respective lines of Paul and Erlend, the sons of Earl Thorfinn and
others, in the Caithness earldom lands probably went respectively
between 1231 and 1239 and afterwards in the following manner.

The right to succeed to the share of Paul passed, on his descendant
Earl John's death in 1231, to Earl John's only child then alive, the
nameless hostage daughter, who, according to our theory, had after
1st August 1214 married Magnus, son of Earl Gilchrist of Angus by his
second marriage with either Ingibiorg or Elin, both sisters of Harald
Ungi, and both older than Ragnhild. But the title of Earl of Caithness
and the enjoyment of the whole earldom was on Earl John's death
temporarily conferred, in addition to his title of Earl of Angus, on
Malcolm, Earl of Angus, and nephew of Magnus the husband of John's
hostage daughter, as being the head of the Angus family and one of the
most powerful earls in Scotland, pending a general settlement of the
affairs of Sutherland and Caithness; and Malcolm held his own Earldom
of Angus, and, in addition, for the Crown, as _Custos_, trustee, or
administrator _pendente lite_, held Caithness after 22nd April 1231
and certainly at 7th October 1232, possibly till 3rd July 1236, when
the following settlement was made.

Caithness, without Sutherland, was with the title of Earl of
Caithness, North and South, confirmed to Earl Magnus II by two grants,
the one of North Caithness in right of his wife and the other of South
Caithness in right of his mother. The estate of Sutherland was after
10th October 1237 erected into an earldom in the person of William,
who was the eldest son of Hugo Freskyn, and was then owner of the
estate, this earldom being, as stated in the Diploma of the Orkney
Earls, "taken away from Magnus II" in his lifetime, possibly out of
South Caithness, by Alexander II.

On Magnus' death in 1239, Gillebryd or Gillebride, called in the
Icelandic Annals Gibbon, who was either a son or younger brother of
Magnus, succeeded Magnus II in the Orkney and Caithness titles and in
the Paul share of the Caithness earldom, and it appears from a
grant of the advowson of Cortachy on 12th December 1257 that Matilda
daughter of Gillebert, "then late Earl of Orkney," married Malise
Earl of Stratherne. On Gillebride's death in 1256, his son Magnus III
succeeded to Orkney and to the share of Paul in the Caithness earldom,
as held by Earl Magnus II and Earl Gillebride his successor, that
is without the Sutherland earldom, and without Freskin and Johanna's
share of Caithness.

The right to succeed to the other share of Caithness, that of Erlend
Thorfinnson, which, according to _The Flatey Book_ had belonged to
Jarl Ragnvald, and had been conferred on Harald Ungi by William the
Lion in 1197, passed through Ragnhild, another and the youngest sister
of Harald Ungi, and then through a child of hers, possibly Snaekoll
Gunni's son, the only known male representative of this line at the
time, or through Snaekoll's younger brother or sister, along with
the Moddan estates in Strathnaver and in various highland and Celtic
parishes in Caithness, to Johanna of Strathnaver as Ragnhild's heir;
but this share did not carry with it the title of Countess. It
was held for her in wardship, but it was not formally granted and
confirmed by the Crown to her or her husband Freskin de Moravia, who
had become Lord of Duffus by 1248, until their marriage, in or after
1245, or even later, and when the settlement was made, possibly South
Caithness was taken partly out of it.

If Earl John had left no daughter at all, the result in Caithness
might well have been much the same; for in that case the Caithness
title and lands might well have been conferred as to the title and
a share of the earldom lands on the elder surviving sister of Harald
Ungi, Ingibiorg or Elin, and her heir, while the other share without
the title would go to the heir of the younger sister Ragnhild. But
Magnus, if he had not married John's daughter, would not have got
North Caithness, and it seems essential that Magnus should have
married into the line of Earl John, in order to found a claim on his
part to the Jarldom of Orkney, which Harold Maddadson, David, and John
(with whom Magnus had no relationship at all, so far as is known)
had held in its entirety, in spite of the grant of a moiety of it
to Harald Ungi, ever since Harald Ungi's death in 1198, and to the
exclusion of the Erlend line from all share in Orkney, (save for
Harald Ungi's grant) ever since Jarl Ragnvald's death in 1158.

But who will find _evidence to prove_ our conjectures to be even
approximately true?

Till this is done, these matters rest upon mere conjecture, based
mainly upon known Scottish policy, the name of "Magnus," and the
probable situation of the lands owned by the parent lines and the
families known afterwards to have held them, namely, the families of
Cheyne, Federeth, Sutherland, Keith, Oliphant, and Sinclair, among
whose writs or inventories of them search might be made.


_King Hakon and the North of Scotland._

We can now turn with some sense of relief from the intricate maze
of the genealogy of the Caithness earls to the more open ground of
Scottish history, which we left at the date of the death of William
the Lion in December 1214, when he was succeeded on the throne of
Scotland by his son, Alexander II, a youth who had then just entered
his seventeenth year. We can then work the results of our genealogical
conjectures into the general history of the northern counties.

Alexander II, like his predecessors, was in the year after his
accession immediately confronted with a revolt headed by Donald Ban
MacWilliam the younger, another of the descendants of Ingibjorg of
Orkney, widow of Earl Thorfinn and first wife of Malcolm Canmore. The
scene of the rising was, as usual, Moray; and Donald was aided not
only by the inhabitants of that province, but also by a large force
of Irish mercenaries. This rebellion, however, was speedily crushed by
Ferchar Mac-in-tagart of the family of the Lay Abbots of Applecross
in the west of Ross, a county to which Henry, the eldest son of Harold
Maddadson had in vain laid claim.

Differences which threatened to break out between Scotland and England
were speedily settled, and the young king, as we have seen, married
Joanna, sister of King Henry III of England, in 1221. Alexander next
conquered the district of Argyll in 1222, and in the same year reduced
Caithness to subjection on the occasion of Bishop Adam's murder, and
he shortly afterwards put down two rebellions, the one in Moray, as
above stated, and the other in Galloway, a district which, however, he
did not finally conquer till 1235, although Mac-in-tagart was knighted
for a victory there in 1215, and soon after, by 1226, became Earl of
Ross.[1] In 1236, as a punishment for burning to death the Earl of
Atholl, in revenge for the defeat of a member of their family at a
tournament, the Bissets were deprived of their estates near Beauly,
and fled to England, where they endeavoured to embroil that country
again with Scotland. In this they failed, and a treaty was signed
between the two nations that neither should make war on the other
unless it were first attacked itself.[2]

Argyll, Galloway, and Moray being subdued and settled, and the old
Earldom of Caithness broken up, and divided among trustworthy feudal
tenants holding their lands by military service from the Scottish
king, the whole of the mainland of Scotland may now be said to have
been effectively incorporated into one kingdom under the Scottish
Crown. Ecclesiastically, also, the whole realm was divided into
dioceses, whose bishops were appointed by consent of the king.

The dream of Malcolm II at last was realised.

The western islands of the Hebrides, however, still owed allegiance to
the king of Norway, who was till 1240 engaged in civil war with Duke
Skuli in his own kingdom. Alexander II therefore equipped a naval
expedition to reduce the islands, but, soon after he had embarked,
he sickened and died on the island of Kerrera, near Oban, in 1249,
leaving as his successor, his son Alexander III, then only in his
eighth year, who was married in 1251, before his eleventh year, to
Margaret, daughter of Henry III of England, then a child of about
the same age as himself. The marriage was followed by a nine years'
struggle between the rival factions of Alan Durward, Justiciar of
Scotland, and of Walter Comyn, Earl of Menteith, in which England
constantly interfered, till the Comyn, or Scottish, faction finally
gained the upper hand. In 1261, Alexander III's only child Margaret,
who afterwards became Queen of Norway, was born.

Between 1242 and 1245 two Scottish bishops had been sent to Norway by
Alexander II to induce King Hakon to give up the Hebrides to Scotland,
and now his son Alexander III sent another embassy of an Archdeacon
and a Scot, called in the Saga Misel, but more probably Frisel or
Fraser, who, being found to be spies, tried to escape, but were caught
and made to witness the young King Magnus' coronation in his father's
lifetime.[3] These embassies, though backed by offers of money
compensation, were wholly unsuccessful.

Meantime affairs in Sutherland and Caithness had been pursuing an
orderly course for nearly forty years. William, eldest son of Hugo
Freskyn, had succeeded his father in Sutherland before 1214, the year
of Earl David's death, and had in or after 1237 become its first Earl,
and three years afterwards, according to tradition, though probably
this event happened later, with the aid of Richard of Moray, Bishop
Gilbert's brother, a Norse landing at Unes or Little Ferry is said to
have been repulsed in a battle at Embo, near Dornoch in Sutherland.
In this battle Richard fell, and the Norse Prince was also killed,
the Ri-Crois at Embo, which has disappeared long ago, being erected in
memory of the latter.[4] Earl William had died in 1248, and had been
buried in the Cathedral at Dornoch, which Bishop Gilbert had founded
close to and west of the site of the older Church of St. Bar, and
which he had dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary in or after 1222.

The Bishop had given to his diocese of Caithness[5] the Constitution
which is still extant at Dunrobin. This Constitution, like that of
Elgin, was in the main based on that of Lincoln. But the Bishop was to
be _Primus_ and above all other dignitaries of the Cathedral. For
it was ordained that instead of the one priest who had previously
officiated, there should be ten Canons with the Bishop as their head,
five of them holding the dignities of Dean, Precentor, Chancellor,
Treasurer, and Archdeacon, each of them during residence to minister
there daily, as well as the Abbot of Scone, who was a Canon, but had a
Vicar to perform his duties in his absence. The teinds (or tithes)
of certain parishes were allocated to each member of the Chapter; and
lands, residences, and prebends were assigned to them, provision also
being made from the teinds of other parishes for the lighting and
services of the Church. Bishop Gilbert built and completed the
Cathedral, making, it is said, the glass for its windows at Sidera,
from sand taken from near the howe of the first Jarl Sigurd, a
worshipper of Odin.[6]

Bishop Gilbert had also translated the Psalms into Gaelic; and,
having set his diocese of Caithness, comprising the modern counties of
Sutherland and Caithness, in good working order, and having re-buried
his predecessor Adam, with a stately funeral, at Dornoch in 1239, had
made his will in 1242, and died in the episcopal palace at Scrabster,
near Thurso, in 1245. It was probably during his episcopate that
King Alexander II gave his open letter,[7] directed to the sheriffs,
bailies, and other good men of Moray and Caithness, and enjoining them
to protect the ship of the Abbot and Convent of Scone and their men
and goods from injury, molestation or damage in their journeys to
the north. Bishop Gilbert was buried at Dornoch, and was succeeded by
Bishop William,[8] and he in his turn, in 1261, by Bishop Walter de
Baltroddi, who doubtless suffered from King Hakon's fines levied in
Caithness in 1263, and whose daughter the Chief of the Mackays is said
to have married after that date.

In 1261 the Hebrides had been harried by William, MacFerchar, Earl of
Ross and uncle of Freskin de Moravia the younger, with great cruelty
and barbarity, and King Hakon in 1263 began to collect and equip a
fleet with a view to revenging the injury done to his subjects in the
west.[9] In the preparation for this in the spring of 1263, we find
Jon Langlifson, whose mother Langlif was Harold Maddadson's youngest
daughter, and who was thus himself a nephew of Earl John, sent over
with Henry Skot to Shetland to obtain pilots for King Hakon,[10] while
Dougal of the Isles met them in Orkney, and was let into the secret of
Hakon's intended expedition.

Meantime Earl Magnus II, being, according to our conjectures, a member
of the Angus line, whose mother was an elder sister of Harald Ungi,
and being also the husband of Earl John's daughter, had become
entitled to the earldom of Orkney soon after Earl John's death in
1231, and probably since 1236 had held part of Caithness as Earl, by
heirship, and by charter from the Scottish King. Magnus II, soon after
the earldom of Sutherland had been taken away from him, had died
in 1239. Gillebride had then succeeded to both the reduced Scottish
earldom of Caithness and the whole of the Orkney jarldom as successor
in the Angus line of Magnus II; and Gillebride had died in 1256
leaving a son Magnus III. Like his predecessors, Magnus III seems to
have found himself in the awkward position of being bound to serve two
masters who were rapidly approaching a state of war with each other.
Freskin de Moravia, _dominus_ de Duffus by 1248, who about that date
had married the Lady Johanna, had with her obtained not only her lands
in Strathnaver and Caithness, but also the bulk of the Erlend share
of the earldom lands of Caithness, while Magnus held the rest of
Caithness, and William, second Earl of Sutherland, then a mere boy,
had succeeded to that earldom on his father's death in 1248.[11]

As already stated, Alexander II's attempt on the Sudreys had proved
abortive through his death in 1249, and the further attacks on them
in Alexander III's reign by William, son of Ferchar Mac-in-tagart, and
Earl of Ross, had been made in 1261; and by 1262 or 1263, Freskin
had died, leaving two daughters Mary and Christian, both minors and
unmarried, to inherit his share of Caithness, as co-parceners, each
entitled to one quarter of that county.

Early in 1263 Magnus III of Orkney and Caithness, was in Bergen with
King Hakon. For the Saga says,[12] "with him from Bergen came Magnus,
Jarl of Orkney, and the king gave him a good long-ship."

Sailing from Norway in the end of July 1263, King Hakon found a
fair wind, and crossed in two days to Shetland, where he lay for a
fortnight assembling his fleet in Bressay Sound off Lerwick. While he
was here Jon Langlifson, son of Langlif, the youngest daughter of Earl
Harold Maddadson, brought the disappointing news that King John of the
Sudreys had gone over to the side of the Scottish king, but the news
was disbelieved, and Hakon, at the time, had every reason to think
that, while he was sure of the support of the Orkneymen and their
earl, the western islanders would support him to a man. Quitting
Shetland, therefore, he sailed to Orkney, and his fleet lay first at
Ellidarvik or Ellwick in The String off the south of Shapinsay, a few
miles from Kirkwall. While it was here, King Hakon conceived the idea
of sending a squadron of his ships to raid the shores of the Moray
Firth, and there is little doubt that this project was aimed at the
lands of the families of De Moravia in Sutherland and Moray. The
question, however, was submitted to a council of the freemen of the
fleet, who proved to be unwilling that any of them should leave their
king and decided that the fleet should not be divided, but that the
original object of the expedition, the reconquest of the Western Isles
and West of Scotland, should be adhered to instead. What Earl Magnus'
feelings on the subject were is not recorded, but it can hardly have
been pleasing to him to find that his people in Caithness were to be
subjected to a fine by his suzerain in Orkney, though, probably by his
advice, the Caithness folk paid the fine exacted from them,[13] and
had hostages taken from them, in consequence, by the Scottish king.

Hakon's fleet then sailed round the Mull of Deerness into the
roadstead of Ragnvaldsvoe, in the north of South Ronaldsay, which is
now known either as St. Margaret's Hope or possibly as Widewall Bay in
Scapa Flow, and it was while it was there that the annular eclipse
of the sun, ascertained by astronomical calculation[14] to have taken
place on the 5th August 1263, was reported by the writer of the Saga
to have been seen by him. While the fleet was here, it appeared that
the Orkney contingent of ships which Hakon had commanded to join him,
were not "boun" or ready for sea, and Jarl Magnus accordingly "stayed
behind" with his people in Orkney under orders to follow the main

On St. Lawrence's day, the 10th of August 1263, Hakon weighed anchor
without the jarl, or his men, and the fleet, the largest then ever
seen in these waters, sailed from Ragnvaldsvoe into the Pentland
Firth, and, rounding Cape Wrath on the same day, anchored in
Asleifarvik, now corruptly called Aulsher-beg or Old-shore, on the
west coast of the parish of Durness[15] in Sutherland. Thence the
fleet ran across to the Lewis, whence it proceeded on a southerly
course by Rona, into the Sound of Skye, and brought up at the Carline,
now the Cailleach, Stone, in Kyleakin or the Kyle of Hakon. The Norse
King was soon joined by King Magnus of Man, and Erling Ivar's son, and
Andres Nicholas' son, and Halvard and Nicholas Tart, the last having
made no land since he left Norway till he sighted the Lewis. Dougal,
king of the Sudreys also joined King Hakon, and the fleet shortly
afterwards reached Kerrera, near Oban in the Sound of Mull. The events
which followed are recounted, in considerable detail and with much
exaggeration on both sides, by Scottish and Norse chroniclers, but it
is impossible to reconcile their different versions of the story of
the battle of Largs. Nor does such detail, save in the result, affect
Sutherland or Caithness. Suffice it to say, then, that after much
fruitless negotiation between the two kings, purposely prolonged by
the Scottish monarch, a severe and protracted October storm drove many
of the Norse ships ashore near Largs, where the Scots attacked their
crews; and five days later King Hakon withdrew, and sailed with the
remnants of his starving and shattered fleet northwards by the Sound
of Mull and Rum and Loch Snizort in Skye, and thence round Cape
Wrath, to the Goa-fiord or Hoanfiord, which we know as Loch Erriboll,
reaching it on Sunday, October 28th, 1263, in a profound calm.

On their way south, Erling Ivar's son, Andrew Nicolas' son, and
Harvard the Red had[16] "sailed into Scotland under Dyrnes, from which
they went up country, and destroyed a castle and more than twenty
hamlets." But on the return voyage the children of Heth were waiting
for the invaders, and on the day[17] "of St. Simon and St. Jude, when
Mass had been sung, some Scottish men, whom the Northmen had taken,
came. King Hakon gave them peace and sent them up into the country;
and they promised to come down with cattle to[18] him; but one of them
stayed behind as a hostage. It happened that day that eleven men of
the ship of Andrew Kuzi landed in a boat to fetch water. A little
after, it was heard that they called out. Then men rowed to them from
the ships, and there two of them were taken up, swimming much wounded,
but nine were found on land all slain. The Scots had come down on
them, but they all ran to the boat, and it was high and dry, and they
were all weaponless, and there was no defence. But as soon as the
Scots saw the boats were rowing up, they ran to the woods, but the
Northmen took the bodies with them.

"On Monday King Hakon sailed out of the Goa-fiord and let the Scottish
man be put on shore, and gave him peace."[19]

Such is the story, so far as Sutherland and Caithness are concerned,
of Hakon's expedition as told in his Saga, which adds that after
losing one ship in the Pentland Firth, while another was all but sunk
in the Swelchie near Stroma, he sheltered for the night in the Sound
north of Osmundwall, and finally landed again near Ragnvaldsvoe and
went to Kirkwall. Retaining twenty of his ships, he let such of the
rest of them as had not already gone home sail for Norway.

Deserted by his Jarl, the aged king found a home in the Palace of the
faithful bishop, Henry of Orkney, who, alone of all Orkney men, had
followed the fortunes of the fleet. Then King Hakon's health gradually
failed, and after laying up his ships in Scapa Flow, and seeing to the
welfare of his men, he lay down to die of a broken heart, listening as
he sank to Masses indeed, but afterwards with greater joy to the Sagas
of the Norse kings. "Near midnight" on the 15th of December "Sverri's
Saga was read through. But just as midnight was past Almighty God
called King Hakon from this world's life."

His body lay in state, first in the Palace and then in the Cathedral
of St. Magnus, where after a Solemn Mass it was temporarily buried
in the Choir, and it was removed in his flag-ship to Christ Church in
Bergen three months afterwards.[20]

The consequence of King Hakon's failure was the immediate conquest of
the Isle of Man and of the Hebrides by Alexander III.

Sutherland and Caithness were saved for Scotland, it would seem, only
by the vote of King Hakon's freemen before sailing for Largs, while
the defeat of his fleet there led directly to the cession by King
Magnus, his successor, under the treaty of Perth in 1266, of all the
Western Highlands and Islands, for a payment of 4000 marks down and
of 100 marks a year, and the treaty also secured their permanent
political union with Scotland.

Orkney and Shetland, however, remained part of Norway for two hundred
years more, and have since 1468 been held by Scotland and afterwards
by the United Kingdom only under a wadset or mortgage securing 58,000
crowns, the unpaid balance of the dower of Margaret, wife of James
III of Scotland and daughter of King Christian of Norway. The right
to redeem them was frequently though fruitlessly claimed by Norway and
Denmark in succession until the reign of Charles II and even later;
and possibly this right remains, to the legal mind, open until the
present day.

On the 20th February 1471 the Earldom of Orkney and Lordship of
Shetland were, by an Act of the Scottish Parliament, finally annexed
to the Scottish Crown. But Norse law and usages and the Norse language
long lived on in Orkney and longer still in Shetland.


_Results and Conclusion._

Restless energy, and a religion that taught its followers that death
in combat alone conferred on the happy warrior a title to immortal
glory and a perpetual right to the unbroken joy of battle daily
renewed in Valhalla drove the Viking to war.

Headed off on the south by the vast army and feudal system of
Charlemagne, this energy in war could be exercised, and its religious
aims achieved, solely on the sea, which skill in shipbuilding and in
navigation as well had converted from a barrier into a highway to the

As already stated, over-population in the sterile lands of Norway,
and famine probably increased by immigration from the east and south,
drove its people "at times in piracy and at times in commerce"[1]
forth from the western fjords and The Vik across the North Sea to
the opposite coasts of Scotland, and so to its western lochs and to
Ireland, where they found cattle to slaughter on the nesses, stores of
grain, and other booty.

War, in fact, paid; and, after generations of harrying, many of the
raiders concluded that the western lands in Britain were fairer and
more fertile than their native shores, and desired to settle in the

Finally the feudalism of Charlemagne was imitated by Harald Harfagr in
Norway; and, against that, Norse independence revolted and rebelled.
The true Viking would be no other man's man, and to secure Harald's
feudal power he was driven forth from Norway by an organised navy
manned by those of his countrymen who had agreed to accept King Harald
as feudal overlord and to pay him tribute. Defeated, as we have seen,
at the naval battle of Hafrsfjord in 872, the rebel remnant of the
Vikings found their return to Norway barred; and those of them who
became pirates in Orkney and Shetland and raided Norway as such,
were, in their turn, assailed in these islands by King Harald, and
destroyed. Others of them colonised Ireland, the Hebrides, and the
Faroes; and from all these islands as well as from Scotland and Norway
issued the swarms that settled in Iceland, and afterwards gave us a
code of law, our system of trial by jury, much of our legal procedure,
and, when crossed with Gaelic blood, produced the glorious literature
of the Sagas. But in their exodus, whencesoever they started, what
all alike sought was liberty; which, for them, meant the right to do
exactly as they pleased to others, and freedom from paying "scat" or
dues to a superior lord.

When the Vikings came, they came as worshippers of Thor and Odin and
the old Teutonic gods. To them the Christianity of the Pict was "a
weak effeminate creed." They, therefore, slew its followers, plundered
its shrines, and drove its clergy south from Orkney, from north-east
Caithness and the coasts of Sutherland, and from the seaboard of Ross
and Moray, and for a century and a half Christianity was uprooted
and almost wholly expelled. No jarl before Sigurd Hlodverson was a
Christian, and he was baptized by force, and died fighting for Odin
at Clontarf. With all "the fury of an expiring faith, its last lambent
flickering flame, against a creed that seemed to contradict every
article of the old belief,"[2] wherever they came, they destroyed the
cult and culture of Columba, which it had taken several centuries to
establish in the north and west of Alban.

When the conquerors settled in the land, they enslaved such of its
inhabitants as remained among them for a time, and gave to the best
coastal lands and lower valley farms the Norse names which they still
bear, but they left the heads of the river valleys and the hills
mainly to the Moddan family and their Pictish followers and clansmen,
who held them tenaciously and extended their holdings, as the Norse
became less hostile through inter-marriage, or less strong. Once
settled, the Norse exerted such steady pressure on their southern
Pictish neighbours in Ross and Moray, and kept them so fully occupied
in war or by the constant menace of it from the north, that successive
Scottish kings were in their turn left comparatively free, on their
own northern frontier, from Pictish attacks, and were therefore
enabled to consolidate their own kingdom in the south of Scotland and
to beat the English back to the line of the Tweed. Afterwards they
were able to turn their attention to the consolidation of the mainland
north of the Grampians,[3] by first overcoming the Picts in Moray,
and then the Norse in Cat, and establishing the feudal system and the
Catholic Church.

Worshipping, as the Vikings did, amongst others, the "fair white god
Baldr of golden beauty," and accounting as base-born "hellskins" those
of darker hue, it seems strange that they should so soon have taken
to themselves Celtic wives. But we have seen that they came by sea and
that no Norse women were allowed in Viking ships,[4] and thus it was
Celtic mothers alone that perpetuated the race. They also taught the
children the Gaelic tongue, and, on the mainland in all Sutherland and
Caithness save the north-eastern portions of the latter, Gaelic soon
became again the only spoken language.

But the language was Gaelic with a difference. As already stated, it
contained, especially in connection with the sea, and ships, gear, and
tackle, many old Norse words,[5] and, in the Gaelic of Sutherland, as
in the English of Orkney and Shetland and of Caithness and Moray
the Old Norse roots remain. Nor need we believe that every Magnus or
Sweyn, or Ragnvald was a pure Norseman. For their Celtic mothers often
preferred to give their children Old Norse names.

The Norse place-names,[6] too, have been faithfully preserved by
Gaelic inhabitants, and are still with us; and despite their varying
spellings in documents of title and maps of different dates, these
names generally yield up the secret of their original meanings when
they can be traced back to the earliest charters, especially if they
can be compared with the corresponding Gaelic versions of them in use
at the present time. For Gaelic was ever a trustworthy vehicle of the
original Norse. The Norse place-names too are found in the same spots
on which the remains of brochs exist, that is, on the best land at the
lowest levels which the Picts had already cultivated, and which the
Norse invaders seized. Such names are also found on the eastern coast
as far south as Dingwall, both in Ross and Cromarty. They were never
imposed on the Moray seaboard, which was not permanently held by the
Norse. Freskyn and his descendants saw to that. His fortress at Duffus
checked all raids from their fort at Burghead.

Of outward and visible monuments, save here and there a howe or
grave-mound, the Vikings, unlike their Pictish predecessors, have
left us little or nothing on the mainland. In Iceland the skali[7] or
farm-house of the Norseman was built with some stone and turf below,
and a superstructure of wood which has long ago perished,[8] and but
slight traces of foundations are visible on the surface there. From
the frequent burnings in the Saga we know that such houses were of
highly inflammable materials which would soon perish. The place-name,
"Skaill," remains both in Sutherland and Caithness. But no skilled
antiquary, has as yet laid bare by excavation the secrets of likely
sites of Norse dwellings in these counties, as Mr. A.W. Johnston has
done at The Jarls' Bu at Orphir, in Orkney.[9] And yet, if Drumrabyn
or Dunrabyn, Rafn's Ridge or Broch, be the true derivation of Dunrobin
(and the name is found at a time when as yet no Robin had inhabited
the place) possibly the Norse Lawman Rafn had a house of consequence
there like his Pictish predecessors, if, indeed, he did not inhabit
the Pictish broch whose foundations were found on or under the present
castle's site. There was also a castle of note on the northern shore
of the modern port of Helmsdale, which is probably the castle of
Sorlinc of Mr. Collingwood's _William the Wanderer_, also called
Surclin, both words being a corrupt form, it is suggested, of
Scir-Illigh, the old name of the parish of Kildonan.

In Caithness especially, we have many a Norse castle site, such as
Earl Harold's borg at Thurso, and Lambaborg, the modern Freswick,
which we know to have been inhabited by noted Norsemen, while, in
Sutherland, Borve near Farr, and Seanachaistel on the Farrid Head near
Durness seem to be ideal Viking sites. _Breithivellir_[10] or Brawl
Castle was a known residence of Earl John and later earls, and search
for foundations might well be made on the coasts of Caithness, and
round Tongue and at the mouths of the Naver and of the Borgie and
other rivers, and at or near Unes or Little Ferry, possibly at Skelbo,
(Skail-bo) and in Kildonan at Helmsdale. That the Norsemen used many
of the Pictish brochs as dwelling-places is more than probable, and
is proved by the Sagas in certain instances.[11] At the same time few
articles used distinctively by Norsemen have been found in them.

No stately church like the Cathedral of St. Magnus at Kirkwall, itself
the finest specimen of Norman architecture in Scotland, survives on
the mainland from Viking days; nor, so far as is known, was any such
edifice built there by any Norseman; but the original High Church of
Halkirk, and also the old church of St. Bar at Dornoch, which preceded
and is believed to have occupied a site immediately to the east of St.
Gilbert's later Cathedral, may have been used by the later jarls, and
a few miles south of Halkirk are the foundations of the Spittal of St.
Magnus,[12] part of which, and of St. Peter's Church at Thurso may be

Though the towns of Wick and Thurso[13] are frequently mentioned
in the _Orkneyinga Saga_, and earls and jarls stayed at both, no
Sutherland village (if any save Dornoch existed) is named in it; but
the site of modern Golspie (Gol's-by) appears in ancient charters as
Platagall, "the Flat of the Stranger."[14]

If in his outward and visible man the Norseman has all but faded away
in Sutherland, he remains more in evidence in Caithness, in spite of
Celtic mothers and successive waves of Scottish immigration. The high
Norse skull, the tall frame with broad shoulders and narrow hips,[15]
the fair hair and skin, the sea-blue eyes and sound teeth are still
to be seen; and from time to time, amid greatly preponderating Celtic
types, we are startled by coming across some perfect living specimen
of the pure Viking type almost always on or near the coast.

But, if the outward type is rarely seen, its inward qualities remain.
What were those qualities?

The late Professor York Powell summed up the character of the Viking
emigrant folk in his introduction to Mr. Collingwood's _Scandinavian
Britain_, as follows:--

"A sturdy, thrifty, hardworking, law-loving people, fond of good cheer
and strong drink, of shrewd, blunt speech, and a stubborn reticence,
when speech would be useless or foolish; a people clean-living,
faithful to friend and kinsman, truthful, hospitable, liking to make a
fair show, but not vain or boastful; a people with perhaps little
play of fancy or great range of thought, but cool-thinking, resolute,
determined, able to realise the plainer facts of life clearly, and
even deeply."[16]

Blend these qualities with those of the Gael, and what infinite
possibilities appear; for the characteristics of the two races
supplement each other. Fuse them together in proper proportions for
a few generations, the improvident and dreamy with the thrifty and
energetic, the voluble with the reticent, the romantic and humorous
with the truthful and blunt of speech, the fiery and impulsive with
the sober of thought, and how greatly is the type improved in the new
race evolved from the union of both.

Turning from eugenics to more practical matters, it was the brain and
the manual skill of the Viking that invented and perfected our modern
sailing ship. Stripped of its barbaric excrescences at stem and stern,
and of its rows of shields and ornaments, the lines of the Viking ship
of Gokstad[17] found there buried but entire, are the lines of our
herring boats of fifty years ago. Sharp and partly decked at stem and
stern only, like those boats, the Viking ship could live, head to the
waves, even in the roughest sea. It was, too, a living thing, a new
type of vessel handy to row or sail, and far in advance not only of
the early British ship and Pictish coracle[18] but also of the Roman
galley with lines like those of a canal barge, and also far in advance
of the Saxon ship of war or merchandise. The only points of difference
between the older type of herring boat and the Viking ship were the
stepping of the mast further forward and the use of the fixed rudder
in the modern vessel.

Not only did the Viking brain invent our modern ship, but it was
the Viking spirit that impelled us as a nation to use the ocean as
a highway. The Norseman had discovered America and West Africa many
centuries before Columbus or Vasco di Gama. The Norse colonised[19]
Greenland, Labrador, and possibly even Massachusetts, and it was on a
voyage to Iceland that Jean Cabot heard of America, on whose continent
he was the first modern sailor to land, and it is said that it was
through him that Columbus, after he had discovered the West Indian
Islands, first heard that North America had been proved to be a
continent by Cabot's coasting voyage along its shore from Maine to
Florida. The Vikings, too, taught us the discipline without which no
ship can live through an ocean storm. Their spirit, too, when piracy
had died out, led us into trade; for, as we have seen, the Viking was
no mere pirate, but ever a trader as well.[20] Their sea-fights live
in story, though their traders found no skald or bard, and it is thus
that we hear less of their trading or of their civic or domestic life.

This spirit of theirs, like their blood, is ever with us still. It has
gone into our race, and it keeps coming out in unexpected quarters.
Hidden under Celtic colouring and Highland dress, the Viking warrior
is there in spirit, glorying in battle, though often apparently no
more of a real "Barelegs" by race than was kilted King Magnus. The
Berserk fury and stubborn tenacity of our Highland regiments derive
their origin from the Viking as well as from the Celtic strain.[21]
Our sailors too, had they been Celts, would not readily have left
smooth water. It was Viking not Celtic blood that drove them to the
open sea. It was Viking skill that built the ships, managed them in
storms through Viking discipline, navigated them across the ocean, and
gave us the naval and commercial supremacy which founded and preserves
our empire overseas.

They came to us not only from Norway direct, westwards across the sea.
They came to us also from Normandy northwards through England. The
first swarms of Norsemen had brought with them rapine and disorder.
Later on the Norman came to the north to curb such evils, and to
organise, administer, and rule the land. The Normans succeeded in
this as signally as the Saxon barons, introduced under Saint Margaret,
Malcolm Canmore's Saxon queen, had failed. David I was by education a
Norman knight. At heart he was an ecclesiastic. As Scotland's king,
he was, in theory, owner of Scotland's soil from the Tweed to the
Pentland Firth, and he disposed of it to his feudal barons, mainly
Norman, and to religious foundations on Norman lines, as the Norman
kings of England had done there before him, in order to organise and
consolidate his kingdom; and his successors did the same.

Thus, as Professor Hume Brown puts it--[22]

"Directly and indirectly the Norman conquest influenced Scotland only
less profoundly than England itself. In the case of Scotland it was
less immediate and obtrusive, but in its totality it is a fact of the
first importance in the national history."

It affected Scotland in the latter part of the times which we have
considered right up to John o' Groats. Moray was divided among
Normans and "trustworthy natives," and the scattering of its Pictish
population gave the Mackays to Sutherland, and, largely blended with
the Norse, they still occupy the greater part of it. The Freskyns, as
"trustworthy natives," were introduced into Sutherland, after many
a fight for it, by charter doubtless in Norman form; and Normans won
Caithness in the persons of the earlier Cheynes and Oliphants and St.
Clairs, who, by inter-marriage with the descendants in the female
line of a branch of the Freskyns, possessed themselves not only of the
lands of the family of Moddan but of most of the mainland territories
of the Erlend line, through Johanna of Strathnaver's daughters and

At a time and in an age when liberty meant licence, the order which
the Norman introduced into the north made more truly for real liberty
and the supremacy of law, than the individual independence which
the Norseman had left his native land to preserve; and though both
feudalism and the blind obedience to authority then enjoined by the
Catholic Church are no longer approved or required, and have long
been rightly discarded, yet they served their purpose in their day,
by evolving from the wild blend of Gaels and Norsemen, which held the
land, a civilised people free from many of the worse, and endowed with
many of the better qualities of either race.


_The following abbreviations are used:

H.B. for Hume Brown's History of Scotland.

O.S. for Orkneyinga Saga.

O.P. for Origines Parochiales.

F.B. for Flatey Book.

O. and S. for Tudor's Orkney and Shetland.

B.N. Burnt Njal.

  And see List of Authorities (ante) for full titles of Books referred
  to. Save where otherwise stated the references to the Sagas
  are to the chapters not pages_.



[Footnote 1: _Rhind Lectures_ 1883 and 1886, and see _The County of
Caithness_, pp. 273-307.]

[Footnote 2: _Royal Commission 2nd Report, 1911_, and _3rd Report,
1911_; see also Laing and Huxley's _Prehistoric Remains of Caithness_,

[Footnote 3: _Survivals in Belief among the Celts_, 1911.]

[Footnote 4: _Tacitus, Agricola_ 22-28.]

[Footnote 5: Coille-duine, or Kelyddon-ii.]

[Footnote 6: _H.B._, vol. i, p. 5.]

[Footnote 7: Anderson, _Scotland in Pagan Times_, p. 222. Two plates
of brass found in Craig Carrill Broch. Copper 84%, tin 16%.]

[Footnote 8: See Laing and Huxley's _Prehistoric Remains in
Caithness_, Laing ascribes a much greater antiquity to the _Burgs_,
pp. 60-61. See Skene, _Chron. Picts and Scots_, pp. 157-160 as to a
legend of their Scythian origin, and p. xcvi and p. 58.]

[Footnote 9: See Reeves' Life, and see _H.B._, vol. i, pp. 12-15; also
Dr. Joseph Anderson's _Scotland in Early Christian Times_, 1879, p.

[Footnote 10: _H.B._, vol. i, pp. 10-17.]


[Footnote 1: See MacBain's note at p. 157 of Skene's _Highlanders of

[Footnote 2: For the boundaries of Sutherland, see Sir R. Gordon's
_Genealogie of the Earles_, pp. i and 2, and map hereto.]

[Footnote 3: In Ness the subjacent stone is too near the surface to
have ever admitted of the growth of large trees.]

[Footnote 4: Scrope, _Days of Deerstalking_, 3rd edit., pp. 374-377.]

[Footnote 5: Curie's _Inventories of Monuments, &c._, 1911 (Caithness)
1911 (Sutherland), and see his maps. Why are there no brochs in Moray,
Aberdeenshire and the Mearns? Did the Picts come there from the west
and south-west coast after the age of broch-building, driven before
the Scots, first eastward, then north into the Grampians?]

[Footnote 6: For example in Loch Naver.]

[Footnote 7: Anderson's _Scotland in Pagan Times_, pp. 174-259.]

[Footnote 8: See Munro's _Prehistoric Scotland_, p. 356.]

[Footnote 9: Often spelt Mormaor. See Ritson, _Annals of the
Caledonians_, pp. 62-3.]

[Footnote 10: See _Scotland in Early Christian Times_ (Anderson), pp.

[Footnote 11: Despite _The Pictish Nation_, pp. 69 and 401. But see
Skene, _Chron. Picts and Scots (Annals of Tighernac_) p. 75, where 150
Pictish ships are said to have been wrecked in 729 A.D.]

[Footnote 12: See Du Chaillu, _The Viking Age_, vol. ii. pp. 65-101.]

[Footnote 13: Worsaae, _The Prehistory of the North_, pp. 184-7.
_Scandinavian Britain_, pp. 34-42.]

[Footnote 14: Viking Society's _Orkney and Shetland Folk_, 1914.]

[Footnote 15: Robertson, _Early Kings_, vol. i, p. 105, and ii, p.

[Footnote 16: Dun-bretan, or the fort of the Britons; Alcluyd, the
rock of the Clyde.]


[Footnote 1: _H.B._, vol. i, p. 22.]

[Footnote 2: _Chron. Hunt._ Skene, _Chron. Picts and Scots_, p. 209.]

[Footnote 3: See also Rhys, _Celtic Britain_, p. 198.]

[Footnote 4: _Flatey Book_, vol. i, ch. 218.]

[Footnote 5: _H.B._, vol. i, p. 27.]

[Footnote 6: Haroldswick in Unst is said to have been called after
King Harald. Tudor, _O. and S._, p. 570.]

[Footnote 7: _Ekkjals-bakki_ is clearly Oykel's Bank, the high bank or
[Greek: ochthê hypsêle] of Ptolemy. "Ochill" is the same word. As for
Bakke, see Coldbackie and Hysbackie near Tongue.]

[Footnote 8: _O.S._, ch. 4, 5.]

[Footnote 9: The late Dr. Joass had identified the site of the burial
mound. It is said to be Croc Skardie on the S.E. bank of the River
Evelix, near Sidera. Skardi is a Norse word, and probably means a gap,
or a twin-topped hillock, which it is.]

[Footnote 10: _H.B._, i, p. 28.]

[Footnote 11: See Skene's _Chronicles of the Picts and Scots_, pp. 8,
9 and lxxv, and _Celtic Scotland_, vol. i, 339, note.]

[Footnote 2: An able paper on this subject by the late Mr. R.L.
Bremner was read to the Viking Society, and it is hoped may be
printed. But Brunanburgh is usually located south of the Humber, or in
the Wirral in Cheshire. See _Scandinavian Britain_, pp. 131-4 where it
is located on the west coast, and on this coast it probably was.]

[Footnote 13: See _Genealogie of the Earles_, pp. 1 and 2, as to the
"boundaries of Southerland."]

[Footnote 14: _F.B._, vol. i, pp. 221-9. See Trans. of _O.S._,
Hjaltalin and Goudie, App. pp. 203-212. See also _St. Olaf's Saga_, c.
cix. See also generally Vigfusson's _Prolegomena to Sturlunga Saga_,
Introduction, p. xcii, vol. i.]

[Footnote 15: The "scurvy Kalf" and "tree-bearded Thorir."]

[Footnote 16: _O.S._, ch. 6, 7.]

[Footnote 17: _O.S._, ch. 8, on Rinar's Hill. Tudor, _O. and S._, p.

[Footnote 18: _O.S._, ch. 80. But see _Heimskringla_, Saga Library, i,
96 and _St. Olaf's Saga_, ch. cv and cvii.]

[Footnote 19: See _Blackwood's Magazine_, April 1920; an able and
interesting article intituled _A Branch of the Family_, by J. Storer

[Footnote 20: _F.B._, ch. 183, 184.]

[Footnote 21: Tudor, _Orkney and Shetland_, p. 336.]

[Footnote 22: _Torf. Orc._, p. 25, "facile de alieno largientis."]

[Footnote 23: _F.B._, 115. _O.P._, 783. _F.B._, 186. _O.S._, 10, 11.
_O.S._, 8. Skene, _Celtic Scotland_, i, 374-9.]

[Footnote 24: Dalrymple, _Collections_, p. 99.]

[Footnote 25: Viking Society, _Orkney and Shetland Folk_, 1914, p. 5.]

[Footnote 26: _O.P._, (Canisbay), vol. ii, 794, 816.]

[Footnote 27: _O.S._, 11.]

[Footnote 28: _B.N._, c. 85.]

[Footnote 29: _O.S._, 12. _F.B._, 187. The _F.B._ makes the scene of
this battle Skitten Moor.]

[Footnote 30: _F.B._, 187.]

[Footnote 31: _Thorgisl_, I, 4. (_Orig. Islandicae_, ii, p. 635.) In
_The Old Statistical Account_ (Tongue) there is a tradition of such a
fight on Eilean nan Gall at the entrance to the Bay of Tongue, then in

[Footnote 32: p. 23.]

[Footnote 33: See Sir Wm. Fraser's _Book of Sutherland_, and Pedigree
in Appendix. There is a Craig Amlaiph (Olaf) above Torboll and
Cambusmore (both in Cat) near the Mound in Sudrland. There were no
Thanes of the De Moravia line in Sutherland.]

[Footnote 34: See _The Pictish Nation and Church_, pp. 129-32, and

[Footnote 35: See _Darratha-liod_, published by the Viking Club,

[Footnote 36: _Burnt Njal_, c. 151.]

[Footnote 37: Iceland accepted Christianity by a vote of its Thing in
1000 A.D. "Blood" often fell in Iceland; after a volcanic eruption,
rain was tinged with red.]

[Footnote 38: Tudor, _O. and S._, p. 20.]

[Footnote 39: Rods used for dividing and pressing downwards.]

[Footnote 40: See _Scandinavian Britain_ (Collingwood), p. 256-7,
where Mr. Gilbert Goudie's _Antiquities of Shetland_ is referred to.]


[Footnote 1: _Reg. Morav._, p. xxiv, and _Charter_ No. 264, p. 342.]

[Footnote 2: Dunbar, _Scottish Kings_, pp. 4-7.]

[Footnote 3: Some authorities hold that Macbeth was the son of a
sister of Malcolm. His property was probably in Ross and Cromarty. See
also Rhys' _Celtic Britain_, p. 196.]

[Footnote 4: Skuli was first Earl of Caithness, which then included
Sutherland, see _ante_, but he was Norse.]

[Footnote 5: _O.S._, 16.]

[Footnote 6: Trithing--the same word as Riding in Yorkshire,
one-third. See _Scot. Hist. Review_, Oct. 1918. J. Storer Clouston.
Ulfreksfirth is Larne Bay.]

[Footnote 7: _O.S._, 17, 18.]

[Footnote 8: _O.S._, 20, 21, and _St. Olaf's Saga_, cix.]

[Footnote 9: _O.S._, 22.]

[Footnote 10: _O.S._, 22. See _Corpus Poeticum Boreale_, vol. ii, pp.
180-3, 195 and notes.]

[Footnote 11: _O.S._, 22. Dunbar, _Scottish Kings_, p. 15 and note
22. The Standing Stane was removed to Altyre about 1820. See Romilly
Allen, _Early Christian Monuments of Scotland_, p. 136, "removed from
the College field at the village of Roseisle."]

[Footnote 12: _O.S._, 22.]

[Footnote 13: _O.S._, 22, 23.]

[Footnote 14: Robertson, _Early Kings_, vol. i, p. 116 and note, 116
and 117.]

[Footnote 15: _O.S._, 23, 24, 25, 26. _St. Olaf's Saga_, c. cviii,

[Footnote 16: _O.S._, 27. These raids are unknown to English

[Footnote 17: _O.S._, 30.]

[Footnote 18: _O.S._, 31.]

[Footnote 19: _O.S._, 33, 34. See Tudor's _Orkney and Shetland_, p.
356. "Roland's Geo" is at the N. end of Papa Stronsay.]

[Footnote 20: "Christ Church" in the Sagas denotes a Cathedral

[Footnote 21: _O.S._, 37. See _Chronicles of the Picts and Scots_
(Skene), p. 78.]

[Footnote 22: _O.S._, 13-39.]

[Footnote 23: Pope, _Torf._ (Trans.), p. 62 note. See _Genealogie of
the Earles_, p. 135.]


[Footnote 1: _Short Magnus Saga_, I. _O.S._, 37.]

[Footnote 2: _O.S._, 38.]

[Footnote 3: See _Orkney and Shetland Folk_ (Viking Society, 1914),
A.W. Johnston's note, p. 35. See Dunbar's _Scottish Kings_, p. 7.]

[Footnote 4: See _Dalrymple's Collections_ (1705), p. 153 for the date
of Malcolm's marriage with St. Margaret, p. 157, where he puts the
marriage in 1070, after three years' courtship. See also pp. 163 and
164. Sir Archibald Dunbar puts Ingibjorg's marriage in 1059, as stated
above, and if Thorfinn was an Earl from his birth in 1008, he would
have been 50 years earl in 1058. As a king's grandson he might well
have been an earl from his birth.]

[Footnote 5: Rolls Edition _O.S._, p. 45, c. 30. She must have died
before 1068 when Malcolm Canmore married Margaret, daughter of Edward
Atheling, sister of Edgar Atheling. Dunbar, _Scottish Kings_, p.
27. Was Ingibjorg's marriage within the prohibited degrees, and so
dissolved? See also Henderson, _Norse Influence, &c._, p. 25-26,
which is not correct. Earl Orm married Sigrid, d. of Finn Arneson not
Ingibjorg. See Table ix, _Saga Library_, vol. 6, Earls of Ladir, and
Table xi.]

[Footnote 6: The _O.S._ mentions only Duncan. The other sons seem
doubtful. But see Dunbar, _Scottish Kings_, p. 31 and notes, and p.

[Footnote 7: _O.S._, 40.]

[Footnote 8: As to the Bishop, see _Orkney and Shetland Records_,
pp. 3-8; and as to their quarrels, see _O.S._, 40.; _Magnus Saga
the Longer_, 6 and 8. For St. Magnus, see Pinkerton's _Lives of
the Scottish Saints_, revised by W.M. Metcalfe (Paisley, Alexander
Gardner, 1889), p. xlii, and pp. 213-266.]

[Footnote 9: So called because he wore the kilt, in its original form,
not the philabeg.]

[Footnote 10: _Magnus Saga_, 10, 11 and 20. The story of this time
is confused and difficult. _Torfaeus_, trans., p. 85 and _Torfaeus
Orcades_, c. xviii. From c. 20 of _Magnus Saga the Longer_ it is clear
that Hakon in 1112 took Paul's share of Caithness also and Magnus took
Erlend's share, and that they divided that earldom and lands.]

[Footnote 11: _O.S._, 45.]

[Footnote 12: _Magnus Saga the Longer_, c. 10 to 28. _O.S._, c. 46 to
55. There is little doubt but that Magnus was the Scottish candidate
for Caithness, and Hakon the Norse favourite, and Hakon had to conquer

[Footnote 13: Who was Dufnjal? What does "_firnari en broethrungr_"
mean? Who was Duncan the Earl? Possibly the Norse expression
means half first cousin, and if Dufnjal was Earl Duncan's son, the
relationship was through Malcolm III, and Dufnjal was a son of King
Duncan II, called "Duncan the Earl," of whom, however, the _O.S._
and _Longer Magnus Saga_ say nothing in this connection. But see
Henderson, _Norse Influence, &c._, p. 26 contra.]

[Footnote 14: Paplay, Thora's home, was probably in Firth Parish in
mainland, near Finstown. _Short Magnus Saga_, c. 18, not "twenty," but
twenty-one years after his death. See _O.S._, c. 60. But vide Tudor
_O. and S._, pp. 251-2 and 348. See also Anderson's Introduction, p.
xc, to Hjaltalin and Goudie's _O.S. contra._]

[Footnote 15: _Viking Club Miscellany_, vol. i, pp. 43-65 (J.
Stefansson), but the authorship is disputed.]

[Footnote 16: _O.S._, 47]

[Footnote 17: _O.S._, 48. Both Hakon and Magnus were about five-sixths

[Footnote 18: _O.S._, c. 55; _Magnus Saga_, 30.]

[Footnote 19: _O.S._, 56.]

[Footnote 20: See _Reg. Dunfermelyn_, No. 1 and 23 (p. 14); Lawrie,
_Scot. Charters_, pp. 100, 179; Viking Club, _Caithness and Sutherland
Records_, p. 18, the note to which seems correct. "The Earl" was
Ragnvald, who ruled as Harold's guardian at this time, in Caithness
also. Durnach is now Dornoch.]

[Footnote 21: _Reg. Dunfermelyn_, No. 24 (p. 14). Supposed to be the
Huchterhinche of St. Gilbert's Charter to the Cathedral of Durnach.
_Sutherland Book_, iii, p. 4.]

[Footnote 22: Dunbar, _Scot. Kings_, pp. 51, 60, 61, 63. The name is
spelt "Fretheskin" also.]

[Footnote 23: Possibly 1120.]

[Footnote 24: See _History and Antiq. of the Parish of Uphall_ by the
Rev. J. Primrose (1898).]

[Footnote 25: _Family of Kilravoch_, p. 61. Robertson, _Early Kings_,
ii, 497, note.]

[Footnote 26: See _Familie of Innes_ (Spalding Club), pp. 2. 51, 52.]

[Footnote 27: _Sutherland Book_, vol. I, p. 7, and see map of Cat.]

[Footnote 28: See Pedigree in Appendix. _Reg. Morav._, c. 99, p. 114.
Freskyn I was his _attavus_, or great-great-grandfather.]

[Footnote 29: _Reg. Morav._ p. 139, ch. 126.]


[Footnote 1: _O.S._, 57, 58.]

[Footnote 2: _O.S._, 56, 57.]

[Footnote 3: _O.S._, 58.]

[Footnote 4: _O.S._, 58.]

[Footnote 5: Pope, _Torfaeus_ (trans.), note p. 133.]

[Footnote 6: Can she have inhabited the Broch at Feranach, which had
six chambers in the thickness of the wall, (Curle's _Inventory_,
No. 314), or is the site of her homestead (probably of wood) now
undiscoverable? She was burnt in her homestead, not in her residence.
The Saga account points to a site on the west bank of the river.]

[Footnote 7: _O.S._, 58.]

[Footnote 8: _O.S._, 59.]

[Footnote 9: _O.S._, 61, 62, 63, 65, c.f. the modern phrase "a young

[Footnote 10: _O.S._, 66.]

[Footnote 11: _O.S._, 68.]

[Footnote 12: _O.S._, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73-80.]

[Footnote 13: See Tudor, _Orkney and Shetland_, pp. 35 and 375.]

[Footnote 14: See note to Hjaltalin and Goudie _O.S._, p. 107, where
Atjokl's-bakki is suggested as an emendation, and also p. 115.]

[Footnote 15: Maiming made a Northman impossible.]

[Footnote 16: _O.S._, 81.]

[Footnote 17: _O.S._, 81.]

[Footnote 18: _O.S._, 82.]

[Footnote 19: Guides would be easily got from Elgin. For the MacHeths,
constantly fled to the wilds of Cat for refuge, before, in 1210 or
later, they settled there, getting land in Durness after 1263.]

[Footnote 20: i.e. The Minch. It is said that he was the ancestor of
the Macaulays of the Lewis, but Macaulay means son of Olaf, not of

[Footnote 21: _O.S._, 88. Earl Waltheof must have been a neighbour of
Freskyn in Moray.]

[Footnote 22: _O.S._, 86.]

[Footnote 23: _O.S._, 89. Ragnvald's verses are collected in _Corpus
Poet Boreale_, vol. ii, pp. 276-7. See Tudor, _O. and S._ p., 471.]

[Footnote 24: Whence the English expression "bound" for a destination
by sea, i.e. "equipped," which is also a Norse word which has nothing
to do with the Latin "equus" a horse.]

[Footnote 25: _O.S._, 91. Bilbao=the sea-borg on the River Nervion,
not Narbonne, see Rolls Ed., p. 163, note, and _Introduction_, p.

[Footnote 26: _O.S._, 89-99.]

[Footnote 27: _O.S._, 99 and 100.]

[Footnote 28: He was grandson of Hacon Paulson, a grandson of
Thorfinn, and he was also a grandson of Helga, Moddan's daughter.]

[Footnote 29: _O.S._, 100.]

[Footnote 30: See Tudor, _O. and S._, p. 344.]

[Footnote 31: _O.S._, 101. Who this Erlend the Young was is unknown,
but he can hardly have been Jarl Erlend Haraldson, Margret's nephew.
Dasent, Rolls Edit., trans., p. xi. Tudor, _O. and S._, p. 445.]

[Footnote 32: _O.S._, 102. Ingigerd would thus be born not later than
1136. She is possibly the "Ingigerthr, of women the most beautiful" in
the Runes of Maeshowe.]

[Footnote 33: _O.S._, 102, not "from Beruvik," but "from the bridal"
(brudkaupi) probably.]

[Footnote 34: This may be another headland. Brimsness is suggested.
_O.P._, ii, 801, contra.]

[Footnote 35: _O.S._, 103, 104.]

[Footnote 36: _O.S._, 105. See as to Ellar-holm (Helliar-holm) Tudor,
_O. and S._, 283.]

[Footnote 37: _O.S._, 110, 111.]

[Footnote 38: _O.S._, 111.]

[Footnote 39: Curle, _Early Mon. Suthd._, p. 108 No. 316; and note
that the horns of the elk or reindeer have been found in Sutherland.
See _Proceedings of Scot. Antiq._, viii, p. 186; and ix, p. 324.]

[Footnote 40: Thorsdale is the valley of the Thurso River. Calfdale is
the Calder Valley.]

[Footnote 41: Force; possibly Forsie, or some waterfall said to be
near Achavarn on Loch Calder at the S.E. end of it. Halvard is in the
_Flatey Book_ called Hoskúld. _O.P._, ii, 761, at a ruin of a castle,

[Footnote 42: _O.S._, 112, 113. "Ergin" is the plural of airidh,
airidhean or "sheilings."]

[Footnote 43: _Torfaeus._ Lib. 1, c. 36, _sub. fin._, with Papal
authority (_sed quaere_).]

[Footnote 44: Ingibiorg or Elin possibly married Gilchrist, Earl of
Angus, as his second wife. But as to this the Sagas are silent.]

[Footnote 45: _O.S._, 113. See _O.S._, Dasent trans., p. 225. _Hakon
Saga_, 169, Rolls edition.]


[Footnote 1: _O.S._, 114. There is a Mac William Earl of Caithness on
record in 1129. _Seats Peerage_ (Paul).]

[Footnote 2: _O.S._, 81. _O.S._, Dasent trans., p. 225.]

[Footnote 3: _O.S._, 115-118.]

[Footnote 4: _Torf. Orc._, p. 153. He declined to come and fetch her.]

[Footnote 5: _O.S. Addenda_, p. 225. Rolls edition, trans.]

[Footnote 6: _Sverri Saga_, 90-93.]

[Footnote 7: _Scottish Peerage_, vol. viii, p. 318 sqq.]

[Footnote 8: Quoted by Nisbet, _Heraldry_, App. p. 183, and
_Dalrymple's Collections_, 1705, pp. 66-7 "quas terras pater suus
Friskin tenuit tempore regis David." Felix, Bishop of Moray, who is a
witness to it, was appointed in 1162 and died not later than 1171. As
to David's visit to Duffus, see _Chron. Mailros_, 74.]

[Footnote 9: Shaw's _Moray_, Edit. 1775, p. 75, "several sons." _Reg.
Morav._ p. 10, and Nos. 12, 13, 19. See _Records of the Monastery of
Kinloss_, p. 112 and _Reg. Morav._, p. 456 "W. filius Frisekin. Hugo
filius ejus." Lohworuora--see Lawrie, _Early Scottish Charters_, pp.
185-6 and 429-30.]

[Footnote 10: See _Lawrie Annals_, p. 389 and _Chron. Mailros_,
p, 113. See _Records of Kinloss_, p. 113, "Andreas filius Willelmi

[Footnote 11: _Reg. Morav._, No. 1 charter of Skelbo to Gilbert. Hugo
grants it "Testibus Willielmo fratre meo, Andrea fratre meo." See also
_Reg. Morav._, p. 43, No. 40, rector of St. Peter's, Duffus, and No.
119, p. 131.]

[Footnote 12: Shaw's _Moray_, edit. 1775, p. 75, and note ante, and p.
407, No. xxviii, "Willelmi filii Willelmi filii Freskini."]

[Footnote 13: Paul, _Scot. Peerage_ (Sutherland), quotes Reg. Mag.
Sigil. Augt. 1452.]

[Footnote 14: See _Robertson's Index_, p. xix. _O.P._, ii, p. 543.]

[Footnote 15: _O.P._ II, ii, 655. _Acta Parl. Scot._, 1, p. 606,
_Robertson's Index_, p. xxiv.]

[Footnote 16: _Sutherland Book_, vol. iii, p. 1. It may have been
hoped that Gilbert would succeed the maimed Bishop John, _Reg. Morav._
p. xxxiii, note.]

[Footnote 17: _Sutherland Book_, vol. iii, p. 2. The tenure was thus
by Scottish service of these lands, and so also of Sutherland itself.
It was no grant for religious or charitable purposes.]

[Footnote 18: _Reg. Morav._ xxxv, a late marginal note.]

[Footnote 19: Lawrie, _Early Scot. Charters_, pp. 185 and 430, note,
which puts the date at 1147-1150. Children, however, did witness
charters, and Hugo attests last.]

[Footnote 20: _O.P._, ii, 486. _Reg. Morav._, xxxv, note q. Nos. 259,
215, 216; and _O.P._ ii, 482; and as to Freskin's succession, see No.
99 _Reg. Morav._, p. 113.]

[Footnote 21: _Reg. Morav._ xiii, and No. 211.]

[Footnote 22: See _Early Pedigree of the Freskyns_ at the end of this
book. See _Reg. Morav._, p. 89 (No. 80) and p. 133 (No. 121).]

[Footnote 23: This may have happened a year earlier.]

[Footnote 24: Skene, _Celtic Scotland_, vol. i, p. 470, quotes _Will.
Newburgh Chron._, b. 1, c. xxiv. Malcolm was personated by Wemund the
monk of Furness. See Note pp. 48-9 of _Viking Society's Year Book_,
vol. iv, 1911-2.]

[Footnote 25: Fordun, _Annals 4._ Mackay, _Book of Mackay_, p. 24.]

[Footnote 26: Robertson, _Early Kings_, vol. i, pp. 360-1. As to the
name Macheth and Macbeth, see _Scottish Hist. Rev._ 1920-1. We believe
the names to be distinct, not identical, Mackay being the son of Aedh,
in Gaelic MacAoidh.]

[Footnote 27: Shaw's _Moray_, edit. 1775, p. 391, No. xiv. Innes says
Berowald was no Fleming.]

[Footnote 28: See _Viking Club's Year Book_, iv, 1911-12, notes pp.

[Footnote 29: _O.S._ III. This may be a translation of Loch Glendhu.]

[Footnote 30: _F.B._, Addenda to _O.S._, trans. Dasent, Rolls edit.]

[Footnote 31: Charter of St. Gilbert's Cathedral. _Sutherland Book_,
vol. iii, p. 3, No. 4. _Robertson's Index_, p. 16. _Reg. Dunfermelyn_,
7. See _O.P._ ii, p. 598. _Dalrymple's Collections_, p. 248.]

[Footnote 32: _Sverri's Saga_ (Sephton, pp. 114 to 117), c. 90-93.]

[Footnote 33: _O.P._, 11, ii, pp. 598 and 735. _Lib. Eccles. de Scon_,
p. 37, No. 58. Viking Club, _Caithness and Sutherland Records_, p. 2.
(_Chron. Mailros_), _Lawrie's Annals_, p. 257. A penny per house for
Peter's Pence was paid in his lifetime, _Viking Club Records_, p. 3,
4; _O.P._ says (p. 598) before 1181.]

[Footnote 34: _The Sutherland Book_ quotes this opinion, vol. 1, p.
9, and Lord Hailes had special knowledge, see _Annals of Scotland_
(Hailes), vol. 1, p. 148, anno 1222.]

[Footnote 35: _O.P. Preface_, p. xxi, and pp. 458 and 529; and 413-4.]

[Footnote 36: _Scottish Kings_, Dunbar, p, 80.]

[Footnote 37: _Lib. Pluscard_, xxxvi, 1197-8. _Chron. Mailros_, 1197.]

[Footnote 38: If it were true, as his son Hakon had died in 1171, it
would prove the death of Henry of Ross, Harold's eldest son by his
first marriage, before 1196. The grandsons would be sons of Harold's

[Footnote 39: _O.S._ (Dasent trans.), p. 225. _Torfaeus Orcades_, i,
c. 38.]

[Footnote 40: _O.S._ (Rolls Ed.), pp. 226-231. It was nearer, and
close to Thurso.]

[Footnote 41: See _Hoveden Chron._, vol. iv, pp. 10-12, and _Scottish
Annals from English Chroniclers_, pp. 316-8. (Alan O. Anderson.)]

[Footnote 42: _O.P._ ii, 803.]

[Footnote 43: Dalharrold afterwards belonged to Johanna of
Strathnaver. _Reg. Morav._, p. 139, No. 126. Pope, _Torfaeus_, trans.,
Note p. 169. This battle is also said to have been fought by William
the Lion himself, not by Reginald Gudrodson.]

[Footnote 44: Only three are named, but six are afterwards referred
to. For Pope Innocent's letter see _O. and S. Records_, vol. 1, p.

[Footnote 45: _O.S._, Dasent, Rolls edit., pp. 228-30. It is not
clear that the bishop lived till 1213. See _Two Ancient Records of the
Bishopric_, Bannatyne Club, pp. 6 and 7.]

[Footnote 46: He was there when Bishop Adam was murdered in that

[Footnote 47: This is a very large number and hardly credible. It was
not 6000. Can Eystein be the Island Stone, the Man of the Ord?]

[Footnote 48: Bain, _Calendar of Documents_, Nos. 321 and 324.]

[Footnote 49: _O.S._, Rolls edit., p. 230.]

[Footnote 50: _Sverri Saga_, 118, 119, 125.]

[Footnote 51: _Lord Hailes' Addional Case of Elizabeth, claimant of
the Earldom of Sutherland_, p. 8, and see Robertson, _Early Kings_,
vol. ii, p. 446; App. N. esp. p. 494.]

[Footnote 52: One of the Gordons of Garty in Sutherland.]


[Footnote 1: See Peter Clauson Undal's Translation of the lost Inga
Saga, _O.S._, Dasent's trans., Rolls ed., pp. 234-6, from which David
and John appear as joint earls in Orkney and Shetland also, on payment
of a large sum, only after King Sverri's death.]

[Footnote 2: _O.S._, Rolls edit., p. 231.]

[Footnote 3: _Scotichronicon_, VIII, clxxvi.]

[Footnote 4: _Fordun Gesta Annal._, xxviii, _Lawrie Annals_, p. 397,
"circa festum S. Petri ad vincula", i.e., Augt. 1. 1214. There is no
evidence whatever that her name was Matilda.]

[Footnote 5: _Chron. Mailros_, p. 114; _Lawrie_, p. 395.]

[Footnote 6: _Hakon Saga_, c. 20.]

[Footnote 7: Do. c. 45.]

[Footnote 8: _Flatey Book_; Rolls edit., _O.S._ p. 232.
_Breithivellir_ means Broadfield.]

[Footnote 9: At Skinnet first; then, in 1239, at Dornoch even more
worthily and in state.]

[Footnote 10: _Flatey Book_; Rolls edit. _O.S._, p. 232.]

[Footnote 11: _Province of Cat_, p. 73; see _Wyntoun Chron._, vii, c.

[Footnote 12: See _Robertson's Index_, p. xxv.]

[Footnote 13: See _Scottish Annals from English Chroniclers_, Alan O.
Anderson, pp. 336-7, where the _Chronicle of Melrose_, 139, (1222) is
quoted, Lib. Pluscard, vii, 9.]

[Footnote 14: _Wyntoun Chron._ vii, c. 9.]

[Footnote 15: _Hakon Saga_, c. 86.]

[Footnote 16: Do. c. 101. The Iceland Annals prove Harald's drowning.]

[Footnote 17: _Hakon Saga_, c. 162, 165 and 167.]

[Footnote 18: Snaekollr means Snowball. Being largely of Norse blood,
he was probably a fair Viking.]

[Footnote 19: _Hakon Saga_, 169.]

[Footnote 20: See Tudor's _Orkney and Shetland_, p. 344 and p. 53, and
_Hakon Saga_, 169-171.]

[Footnote 21: _Hakon Saga_, 173.]

[Footnote 22: Not _gydinga. Flatey Book_, iii, p. 528; _Torf. Orc._,
ii, p. 163.]

[Footnote 23: Pope, _Torfaeus_ (trans.), p. 184, note.]

[Footnote 24: No. 126.]


[Footnote 1: One daughter married Olaf, who was killed at Floruvagr in
battle in 1194, see _O.S._, Rolls edit., pp. 230-1 (trans.) Dasent.]

[Footnote 2: Notably in Paul's _Scottish Peerage_ sub _Angus_ and

[Footnote 3: Ancestor of the Ogilvies, Earls of Airlie.]

[Footnote 4: _Scots Peerage_ (Cokayne & Gibbs), sub _Angus_ and
_Caithness_. Dalrymple, _Collections_, p. 220.]

[Footnote 5: _Reg. Aberbrothoc_, pp. 163 and 262, 1227, Jan. 16,
"Magno filio comitis de Anegus."]

[Footnote 6: Robertson, _Early Kings_, vol. ii, p. 23 (note), who
quotes _Reg. Dunfermelyn_, No. 80, _Reg. Morav._ 110; _Lib. Holyrood_,
58, in support.]

[Footnote 7: Shaw, _Moray_, 1775, p. 387, No. iv.]

[Footnote 8: i.e., Malcolm's.]

[Footnote 9: Surely an error for "Gilchrist."]

[Footnote 10: See _Dalrymple's Collections_, 1705, pp. lxxiii-iv,
where "North Caithness" is distinguished from Sutherland
conjecturally. Probably, however, it was distinguished rather from the
southern part of modern Caithness, viz. Latheron and Wick parishes.]

[Footnote 11: This was William de Federeth II, son of Christian, not
her husband of the same name.]

[Footnote 12: This was Sir Reginald Cheyne III.]

[Footnote 13: "Gilchrist" not "Gillebride" all through this

[Footnote 14: Gilchrist, however, died in 1204.]

[Footnote 15: Not, we think, of Erlend, but of Paul. But South
Caithness probably belonged to the Erlend share, i.e., Latheron and
Wick parishes.]

[Footnote 16: _Sutherland Book_, vol. 1, p. 12, note.]

[Footnote 17: _Robertson's Index_, p. 62.]

[Footnote 18: _Reg. Morav._, p. 341. _O.P._, vol. ii, 709.]

[Footnote 19: Can the Mallard or Mallart be _Abhainn na mala airde_,
"the river of the high brow"? Another interpretation, _Abhain na
malairte_, "river of the excambion" has been suggested.]

[Footnote 20: Achness--_Ach-an-eas_ or the field of the waterfall, old
Gaelic _Achanedes_.]

[Footnote 21: Marriages, however, of persons of unsuitable ages were
freely made in these old times.]

[Footnote 22: Norse jarldoms were not given to females, but the
jarldom of Orkney was, failing sons, given to the sons of daughters of
preceding jarls, such as Ragnvald, son of Gunnhild, and Harald Ungi,
son of Jarl Ragnvald's daughter.]

[Footnote 23: _Reg. Morav._, 215, 216; _O.P._, vol. ii, p. 486.]

[Footnote 24: _O.P._, ii, p. 482. Euphamia or Eufemia is a Ross family
name for centuries. _Reg. Morav._, p. 333.]

[Footnote 25: _Bain_, vol. 1, year 1258-9.]

[Footnote 26: _St. Andrew's_, pp. 346 and 347; and for the charter see
_Reg. Morav._, p. 138.]

[Footnote 27: _Reg. Morav._, p. xxxvi. We do not lay stress upon this
argument from the endowment of _two_ chaplains; but it may import that
Freskin died a violent death, unshriven.]

[Footnote 28: We can, however, trace many parts of "Lord" Chen's
lands. For they are called the lands of "Lord" Chen in the
descriptions in later charters quoted in _Origines Parochiales_, vol.
ii, pp. 745 Reay, 749 Thurso, 760 Halkirk, 764 Latheron, 774 Wick,
787-8 Olrig, 790 Dunnet, and 814 Canisbay. His lands in all these
parishes were of considerable extent. They included probably the whole
modern estate of Langwell and most of the parish of Latheron, and
Wick up to Keiss Bay and beyond Ackergill and Riess. In Watten they
comprised Lynegar, Dunn, Bilbster, and others: in Halkirk Parish,
Sibster, Leurary, Gerston, Baillecaik, Scots Calder, North Calder, and
Banniskirk; in Reay Parish, Lybster, Borrowstoun, Forss, and part of
Skaill and Brawlbin: in Thurso, Clairdon, Murkle, Sordale, Amster,
Ormelie and the Thurso fishings; in Dunnet Parish, Rattar, Haland,
Hollandmaik, Corsbach, Ham, and Swiney; while in Canisbay Parish,
Brabstermyre, Duncansby, and Sleiklie belonged to Lord Chen. But
neither "Lord" Chen nor Johanna ever owned Brawl, the principal seat
of the Earls of Caithness; and the Earls of the Angus line had
the rest, mainly in Canisbay, Bower, and the northern part of Wick
parishes. Johanna did not own any of the Chen lands in the Earldom of
South Caithness, which Reginald Chen III acquired after 1340, i.e. the
parishes of Latheron and Wick. She probably owned the old parish of
Far and Halkirk but not Latheron, though this is erroneously implied
in the text.]


[Footnote 1: _Reg. Morav._, pp. 88, 89, 99, 101, 333. Knighted 1215,
was earl in 1226, founded the Abbey of Fearn before 1230, died about

[Footnote 2: _Robertson's Index_, p. xxi.]

[Footnote 3: _Hakon Saga_, 245 and 307.]

[Footnote 4: _Genealogie of the Earles_, p. 30, and _Sutherland Book_,
vol. ii, p. 3 No. 4; _O.P._, ii, 647 note. This is not the Cross now
standing. See Macfarlane, _Geog. Collections_, vol. ii, pp. 450 and
467, where it is called Ri-crois. The story that Dornoch took its
name from the slaying of this Chief with the leg of a horse is quite
unfounded, for the name Durnach appears in a charter about a hundred
years earlier, and has nothing to do with a "horse's hoof." Its
derivation and meaning are alike obscure. Chalmers, _Caledonia_, v, p.
192, gives to Dornock in Dumfriesshire the derivation "Dur-nochd" or
the "bare" or "naked water." Its situation is like that of Dornoch,
with a wide expanse of tidal sands.]

[Footnote 5: _Sutherland Book_, vol. iii, p. 3, No. 4. See also _Two
Ancient Records of Caithness_, Bannatyne Club. The bishop himself was
a Canon.]

[Footnote 6: _Genealogie of the Earles_, pp. 6 and 31; _O.P._, ii,

[Footnote 7: _Liber Eccles. de Scon_, p. 45, No. 73. Viking Club,
_Sutherland and Caithness Records_, No. 8, pp. 12 and 13.]

[Footnote 8: _O.P._, ii, p. 603. As regards the marriage of Iye Mor
Mackay to the daughter of Walter de Baltroddi (Bishop), see _Book of
Mackay_, p. 37.]

[Footnote 9: _Hakon Saga_, 312, 314.]

[Footnote 10: Do. 317.]

[Footnote 11: _Sutherland Book_, vol. 1, p. 15. _Genealogie of the
Earls_, p. 33.]

[Footnote 12: _Hakon Saga_, 319.]

[Footnote 13: _Hakon Saga_, 318. As to the hostages and their expenses
see _Compot. Camer._ 1-31. From additions to _Hakon's Saga_, Rolls
edition, it appears that Caithness was also fined and an army sent
there by the king of Scotland with a view to the conquest of Orkney.]

[Footnote 14: _Hakon Saga_, 319. The calculation was made by Sir David

[Footnote 15: Also called Port Droman. Possibly Hals-eyar-vik =

[Footnote 16: _Hakon Saga_, 318.]

[Footnote 17: _Hakon Saga_, 327.]

[Footnote 18: There is a tradition that Hakon slaughtered cattle on
Lechvuaies, a rock in Loch Erriboll.]

[Footnote 19: _Hakon Saga_, 328-331. Goafiord--Eilean Hoan at the
entrance to Loch Erriboll still retains the name.]

[Footnote 20: See Tudor, _Orkney and Shetland_, p. 307. What happened
to Earl Magnus III, who in July 1263 had been obliged to join his
overlord, King Hakon, and sail with him from Bergen? The Orkneymen
were far from Norway, but dangerously close to Scotland. Their jarl
had large possessions in Caithness, which he feared to lose if he made
war on the Scottish king. Magnus therefore "stayed behind" in Orkney,
and never went to Largs, but probably went to the Scottish king.
Caithness first suffered from levies of cattle and provisions at the
hands of Hakon, and afterwards from fines levied and hostages taken
by the Scottish King, who sent an army, no doubt under the Chens and
Federeths and others, to threaten Orkney and hold Caithness and levy
the fine. Dugald, king of the Sudreys, intercepted the fine, and
disappeared. Orkney had a Norse garrison, and the Scottish army never
went to Orkney, Magnus was reconciled to Alexander III, and after
the Treaty of Perth, in 1267, was reconciled also to King Magnus of
Norway, on terms that he should hold Orkney of him and his successors,
but that Shetland should remain a direct appanage of the Norse Crown,
as it had been ever since Harold Maddadson's punishment in 1195. (See
Munch's _History of Norway_; and _Torfaeus Orcades_, p. 172; and _King
Magnus Saga_, Rolls edition of _Hakon's Saga_, pp. 374-7).]


[Footnote 1: _Scandinavian Britain_, p. 62. To Orkney and Shetland
they came mainly from the fjords north of Bergen.]

[Footnote 2: _Oxford Essays_, 1858, p. 165, Dasent, an admirable
account of the Norsemen in Iceland.]

[Footnote 3: _Hume Brown, History_, ante.]

[Footnote 4: _Scandinavian Britain_, p. 35.]

[Footnote 5: See _Norse Influence on Celtic Scotland_ (Henderson),
_passim_; and _Sutherland and the Reay Country_, (Rev. Adam Gunn),
chapter on "Language," p. 172.]

[Footnote 6: Viking Club, _Old Lore Miscell._, vol. ii, 213; vol. iii,
14, 182, 234.]

[Footnote 7: See _Burnt Njal_, (Dasent) for a plan and elevation of a
Skali. Skelpick may be Skaill-beg, or Little Hall.]

[Footnote 8: _Ruins of Saga-time_ (in Iceland) by Thorsteinn
Erlingson, David Nutt (1899).]

[Footnote 9: See his _Essay_ with plans in the _Saga Book of the
Viking Club_, vol. iii, pp. 174-216.]

[Footnote 10: i.e. Broadfield; see _O.S._, Rolls edition, p. 232,
formerly Brathwell.]

[Footnote 11: Mousa in Shetland was twice so used, by two honeymoon
pairs. See Tudor, _O. and S._, p. 481.]

[Footnote 12: _O.P._, vol. ii, 758.]

[Footnote 13: _O.S._, 84, 100 and 22; 58, 78, 100, 101, 102, 113, and
pp. 226, 227, 228, in Rolls edition. Hjalmundal is the strath, not the
village of Helmsdale.]

[Footnote 14: We find in Latheron in Caithness "Golsary" the shieling
of Gol. Platagall, see _O.P._, ii, p. 680.]

[Footnote 15: The bodily form often follows that of fathers of a fair
race, it is said.]

[Footnote 16: See p. 21.]

[Footnote 17: Frontispiece to vol. 1 of Du Chaillu's _Viking Age_.]

[Footnote 18: See _Scotland in Early Christian Times_, Dr. Joseph
Anderson's _Rhind Lectures_ in 1879, pp. 141-2; _Scandinavian
Britain_, p. 29.]

[Footnote 19: _Saga of Erik the Red_ and _St. Olaf's Saga_. See _Orig.
Islandicae_, vol. ii, Bk. v, pp. 588-756 "Explorers."]

[Footnote 20: Yet see the Romance of _Guillaume le Roi_, Chroniques
Anglo-Normandes, vol. iii, Francisque Michel.]

[Footnote 21: As witness the Seaforths (Sæ-fjorthr) of the 51st
Division in France.]

[Footnote 22: Vol. 1, p. 45. See also Burton's _History of Scotland_,
vol. i, chapter xi, and vol. ii, pp. 14 and 15.]



                                 FRESKYN I

   of Strabrock and Duffus, b. about 1100, was granted Duffus about 1130;
       entertained David I in 1150 there; died between 1166 and 1171.
                |                                         |
(1)William MacFrisgyn, Grantee of          (2)Hugo Fresechin witnessed the
Strabrock, Duffus, &c., "_quas           Charter of Lohworuora Church
terras pater suus Friskin tenuit           (Borthwick) to Herbert, Bishop
tempore regis David_," 1165-1171.       of Glasgow before 1152, (_Hug.
Witnessed Charter of Innes to              filio Fresechin_).
Berowald the Fleming about 1160.
             |                                  |                      |
(1)Hugo Freskyn of Sutherland,  (2)William filius Willelmi filii (3)Andrew,
father was William, son          Freskin, who calls Hugo his       parson
of Freskin, died before 1214.    lord and brother, was Lord        of
      |                          of Petty, Bracholie, Boharm       Duffus.
      |                          and Artildol: d. before 1226.
      |                                         |
      |                                         +---------------------.
      +------------------------------------+------------.             |
      |                                    |            |             |
(1)William _dominus  (2)Walter de Moravia   (3)Andrew, Bishop  Walter de
Sutherlandiae,          b. ? d. before 20th     of Moray.        Moravia de
filius et heres         March 1248, of Duffus                    Petty,
quondam Hugonis_,    buried there                             guardian
cr. first Earl          with his father                          of King
after 1237, died        Hugo 'beatus,' m.                        Alexander
1248. |                 Euphamia, d. of Ferchar                  III and
      |                 Macintagart,                             his
      |                 Earl of Ross, circa                      Queen,
      |                 1224.    |                               1255
      |                          |                                  |
William, 2nd Earl   Freskinus II, who had a "proavus et     Walter dominus
of Sutherland,      attavus" in Moray and was _nepos_  de Bothwell,
1248-1307.          (grandson) Hugonis, m. Lady Johanna     m.d. of John
      |             of Strathnaver. He was born (?)         Cumyn, d. circa
      |             about 1225, Lord of Duffus by 1248,     1294.  |
      |             d. 1262-3 (Ch. 99 _Reg. Morav._)          |
      |                                |                    .------+--.
   .--+----------.                 .---+----------.         |         |
   |             |                 |              |         |         |
William,      Kenneth,        (1)Mary of  (2)Christian,  William,   Andrew.
Third         Fourth           Duffus,     William       d.s.p.       |
Earl of       Earl of          m.          Federeth I.                |
Sutherland,   Sutherland,      Reginald            |                  |
1307-1327.    1327-1333, fell  Chen II.            |                  |
           +--at Halidon Hill.      |   .----------+  .-----------.---+
           |             .----------+   |             |           |
           |             |              |             |           |
           |   Reginald Chen III   William de     Sir Andrew    John of
           |   "Morar na Shein"    Federeth II    Bothwell,   Abercairney.
           |   had half Caithness, granted one    Wardane of
           |   one quarter by      quarter of     Scotland,
           |   grant.    |         Caithness      d. 1338.
           |             |         to Reginald
           |             |         Chen III.
           |             |
    .------+-------.     +----.------------------.
    |              |          |                  |
William         Nicolas  m. Mary             Marjory
Fifth Earl of   of       |  of          m. 1 Sir John
Sutherland,     Torboll  |  Duffus           Douglas
1333.                    |              m. 2 Sir John
    |                    |                   Keith of
    |              Whence the                Inverugie
    |              Duffus Family                  |
    |              and Peerage.                   |
(For rest of       (For rest of pedigree          |
pedigree see       see Sutherland book.)          |
Sutherland Book.)                            Andrew Keith
                                             of Inverugie.

NOTE.--William MacFrisgyn is said by Shaw in his History of
Moray, 1775 edit., p. 75, to have had several sons, viz.:--Hugo of
Sutherland, (2) Sir John (whence the Atholl family), (3) William of
Petty, (4) Sir John of Moray (whence Abercairney), (5) Andrew, Bishop
of Moray, (6) Gilbert, Bishop of Caithness, and (7) Richard of Culbin:
_sed quaere_.




    why no brochs?




  Adam, earl of Angus.

  Adam, bishop of Caithness;



  Afreka, dau. of earl of Fife, m. Earl Harold Maddadson, their children;
    divorced by Harold.

  Agricola, Tacitus.

  Alane, thane of Sutherland.

    its provinces;
    common language;
    ravaged by Irish Danes;
    wars of kings of A. against Northmen;
    Moray stretched across A.;

  Alcluyd (Dunbarton).

  Alexander I.

  Alexander II cr. Wm. Freskyn earl of Sutherland;
    punished burners of Bishop Adam;
    confiscated half Caithness;
    grant of earldom of south Caithness to Magnus, earl of Angus;
    Magnus II, or Malcolm witness to charter;
    succession to throne;
    revolt of Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    Argyll conquered;
    Caithness subdued (1222);
    rebellions in Moray and Galloway;
    embassy to Norway;
    open letter for Scone;

  Alexander III;
    m. Margaret, dau. of Henry III;
    his only child, Margaret;
    embassy to Norway;
    conquered Isle of Man and Hebrides.

  Altyre, Standing Stane of Duffus removed to.

  America, Norsemen discovered;
    heard of by Jean Cabot in Iceland.

  Amlaiph (Olaf) Craig.

  Anderson, Alan O.;
    _Scottish Annals from English Chroniclers_.

  Anderson, Joseph, 11;
    O.S. trans.;
    _Scotland in Pagan Times_, q.v.;
    _Scotland in Early Christian Times_, q.v.

  Andres Nicholas' son.

  Andres, son of Sweyn.

  Andrew, Bishop of Caithness, had grant of Hoctor Common;
    Culdean monk;
    abbot of Dunkeld;
    died at Dunfermline;
    a witness.

  Andrews, St., bishopric founded;
    Roger, bishop of.

  Anglo-Normandes, Chroniques, (F. Michel).

  Angus, earls of (see also under names),
    Adam, son of Gillebride;
    Gilchrist, son of Gillebride, and father of Magnus II, earl of Orkney
      and Caith.,
    Duncan, son of Gilchrist;
    Malcolm, earl of Caithness and Angus;
    Matilda, countess of, dau. of Malcolm;
    Gilbert d'Umphraville, earl of A., husband of Matilda,
    Gilbert d'Umphraville, son of Matilda.

  Angus, son of Gillebride, earl of Angus.

  Anlaf, or Olaf, earl in C.

  Applecross, in Ross, lay abbots.

  Archibald, bishop of Moray.

  Ardovyr (Gael., upper water), identified as Loch Coire and Mallard River,
    i.e., "Abhain 'a Mhail Aird" of Ord. Map, part of Johanna's estate in

    St. Columba landed from Ulster;
    Scots king;
    Dalriadic territory;
    known as Airergaithel;
    Somerled of;
    conquered by king Alexr.

  Arnfinn Thorfinnson, earl, m. Ragnhild, Eric's dau.

  Arnkell Torf-Einarson, earl, slain in England.


  Asgrim's Ergin, now Assary.

  Asleif, mother of Sweyn.

  Asleifarvik (now Old-shore, also called Port Droman).

    included in Creich (q.v.);
    Store Point.


  Atholl (Atjokl);
    Ath-Fodla, a Pictish province;
    Picts absorbed by Scots;
    earls of;
    Sweyn Asleifarson visits;
    earl Paul died;
    bishop John.

  Atholl, earls of;
    Maddad, m. Margret dau. of Hakon;
    earl of A., in 1236, burned to death;
    earls descended from Freskyn.

  Aud the deeply wise, in Caith., settled in Iceland.

  Audhild, dau. of Thorleif, mistress of Sigurd Slembi-diakn;
    m. Eric Streita;
    her son, Eric Stagbrellir;
    Johanna of Strathnaver, a connection.

  Audna, or Edna, dau. of Kiarval, m. Hlodver, jarl.

  Backies, Norse derivation.

  Bakke, in place-names.

  Baltroddi, Walter de, bishop of C.

  Bard, next of kin of Ulf the Bad, Orkney.

  Barelegs, nickname of king Magnus, because he wore the kilt.

  Barr, St., of Dornoch;
    his Fair in Dornoch;
    old church of St. Barr;

  Barth, or Bard, Helgi's son, and St. Barr.

  Beauly, estate of Bissets.

  Beauly Firth;
    site of Redcastle on.


  Bergen, St. Ragnvald returned to, from Grimsby;
    John, earl of Caithness, present at;
    earl John left his son as hostage;
    king Hakon buried in Christchurch;
    k. Hakon and earl Magnus III sailed from.

  Berowald the Fleming (Innes q.v.), had grant in Moray.

  Berridale conveyed by Malise II, earl, to Reginald More, afterwards acquired
      by Chens.

  Beruvik, misreading of.

  Berwick, North, raided by Sweyn.

  Bethoc, eld. dau. of Malcolm II, m. Crinan;
    grandmother of earl Moddan.

  Bilbao, Spain;

  Birrenswark, near Ecclefechan, was Brunanburg.

  Birsay, Orkney, earl Thorfinn's Hall;
    cathedral built by Thorfinn;
    but replaced by St. Magnus' Cathedral.

  Bisset, a Norman family;
    at Beauly.

  Bjarni, bishop of Orkney, probable author of _Orkneyinga Saga_;
    his parents;
    relative of Sweyn;
    at Bergen.


  Blood-rain in Iceland.

  Blundus, Gaufrid, burgess of Inverness.

  Boar, wild, in Cat.


  Boreale, Corpus Poeticum.


  Borve, rock-castle.

  Bothgowanan, or Pitgavenny.

  Bothwell, family of, descended from Freskyn.

  Bothwell, Sir Andrew of.

  Boun, whence Eng. bound, i.e., equipped.


  Brawl, formerly Brathwell (Breithivellir), Castle;

  Breithifjorthr, i.e., Broad-firth, Moray Firth.

  Bressay Sound.

  Brewster, Sir David.

  Brian Borumha, king of Ireland.

  Brichan, Jas.;
    _Orig. Paroch. Scot._.

  Bricius, bishop.

  Brochs, or Pictish towers;
    Roman relics found in;
    date, number, distribution, rise, construction, &c.;
    Norse place-names near brochs;
    at Dunrobin;
    used by Norse as dwellings;
    Craig Carrill, Roman tablets found;
    Skene on origin of;
    at Feranach.

  Broethrungr, firnari en, first cousin once removed.

  Broxburn, (Strabrock).

  Brunanburgh, site.

  Brusi Sigurdson, earl.

  Buchan, earl of.

  Burghead, Turfness of Saga;
    Norse raids from B. checked by Duffus.

  Burnt Njal, Saga of;
    transl. by Sir G.W. Dasent.

  Cabot, Jean, in Iceland.

  Cailleach (Carline) Stone in Kyleakin.

  Cait, or Cat, Pictish province of, (now Caithness and Sutherland, q.v.),
      in three parts, (1) Ness, (2) Strathnavern, and (3) Sudrland;
    description of land;
    unsuitable for trees in Ness;
    west uninhabited in Viking times;
    deer, etc., abounded;
    Athelstan's naval demonstration;
    held by earls of Orkney;
    Duncan the maormor;
    Picts and Norse;
    Pictish clergy driven from north-east by Norse;
    land and people on arrival of Norse.

  Cat, maormors of;
    Duncan, or Dungall;
    Moldan or Moddan.

  Caithness (Ness), part of the ancient province of Cat, q.v.;
    Norse occupied fertile parts;
    ancient monuments;
    _Orkneyinga Saga_ only record before 12th cent.;
    earlier notices and later records;
    earldom claimed by Sigurd Hlodverson;
    Skuli Thorfinnson cr. earl;
    C. people in Iceland;
    sea battle between Ulf and Helgi;
    Moddan, earl of C.;
    his expedition to;
    Norse earls;
    Thorfinn returns to, after Scottish conquests;
    "king of Catanesse," in "William the Wanderer";
    St. Magnus;
    seized by earl Hakon;
    earl Magnus favoured in;
    earldom conferred on Ragnvald Gudrodson;
    much of owned by Moddan's family;
    Norse steadily lost hold on C.;
    Norse driven outward and eastward;
    bishopric founded;
    bishop Andrew;
    Norse earls;
    family of Freskyn de Moravia;
    earldom of David I;
    robberies by Sweyn;
    Malcolm IV granted half earldom to Erlend Haraldson;
    red deer and reindeer hunting;
    bishop's litigation with earls of Sutherland;
    Innes family;
    earldom held of Scottish crown;
    diocese and cathedral;
    bishop Andrew;
    first conquest by King William;
    subdued by King William;
    earl Ragnvald's half conferred on Harald Ungi;
    earl Harold slew earl Harald Ungi;
    Caithness given to Ragnvald Gudrodson;
    who defeated earl Harold at Dalharrold;
    Ragnvald's stewards left in charge, their fate;
    the lawman;
    Ragnvald bought earldom;
    extent of earl Harold's earldom;
    Scottish policy in the north;
    old Norse earldom broken up;
    services of Freskyn family;
    extent of earldom of earl David;
    the burning of bishop Adam;
    thingstead and lawman;
    the earldom;
    succession to earldom;
    subjected by king Alexr. II, 1222;
    king Hakon's fine;
    escaped attack by Hakon;
    Scottish subjection of Norse;
    Norse adopted Gaelic;
    Norse place-names;
    Norse type still in evidence;
    Normans, Cheynes, Oliphants and St. Clairs;
    inheritance of Erlend lands by Normans;
    inhabitants a blend of Gael and Norse.

  Caithness, church in;
    bishopric founded;
    cathedral at Halkirk,
    at Dornoch;
    bishop's palace at Thurso;
    constitution of diocese;
    bishops: Andrew;
     Walter de Baltroddi.

  Caithness, earldom of;
    in the 14th cent. a moiety in the Angus earls and the Chen family;
    South Caithness granted to earl Magnus II;
    Brawl, a capital residence of the earls in C.;
    devolution of earldom and tribal owners;
    North and South divisions;
    hostages taken by Scotland after Largs;
    paid a fine to king Hakon.

  Caithness, earls of;
    Thorfinn Sigurdson, first Scottish earl;
    Skuli cr. earl by Scots king;
    Moddan cr. earl by Scots king;
    Crichton and Sinclair earls;
    earl's office descended to females;
    Norse and tribal land-owners;
    Scottish policy in regard to succession in C.

  Caithness and Sutherland Records, Viking Society.

  Caithness, Inventory of Monuments and Constructions in the County of.

  Caithness, Prehistoric Remains of, (S. Laing and T.H. Huxley).

  Calder, Loch.

  Calder Valley, Calfdale of Saga.

  Caledonia, (G. Chalmers).

  Caledonians, Annals of the, (Ritson).

  Caledonians inhabited the Grampians;
    Romans failed to conquer;
    Roman wars effected union of;
    St. Ninian, Christian mission, through Roman influence.


  Carham; victory of Malcolm II.

  Cat, Province of, (Angus Mackay).

  Ce, the province Keith, or Mar.

  Celtic Britain, (Rhys).

  Celtic Scotland, (W.F. Skene);
    on succession to Caithness;
    Sir W. Fraser's criticism.

  Celts, non-seafaring;
    Norse influence;
    influence of Norse on Gaelic, and of Gael on Norse;
    "P" and "Q" Celts;
    kilted warriors of Norse extraction.

  Celts, Survival of Beliefs among the, (George Henderson).

  Chen, or Cheyne, family in Caithness;
    descendants of Johanna of Strathnaver;
    family lands.

  Chen II, Reginald;
    signatory of National Bond with Wales;
    father of Reginald Chen III;
    m. Mary, dau. of Freskin and Johanna of Strathnaver, got one-fourth of
    had regrant of Strathnaver lands;

  Chen III, Reginald, known as "Morar na Shein," acquired Berridale in south
      Caithness from Malise II;
    owned a moiety of earldom of Caith., lived in parish of Halkirk;
    grandson of Johanna;
    his estate;
    acquired south Caithness lands after 1340;
    acquired Christian (Freskyn's) fourth;

  Christ Church, Norse name for a cathedral.

  Christ Church, Bergen;
    king Hakon buried.

  Christ's Kirk, Birsay;
    burial of St. Magnus.

  Christian I, king of Norway;
    mortgaged Orkney and Shetland to Scotland.

  Christiania Fjord, or the Vik.

  Pictish, Columban and Catholic;
  Norse influence.

  Clairdon, near Thurso;
    earl Harald Ungi defeated;
    where Lifolf Baldpate fell.

  Clibreck (Clibr'), part of Johanna's estate.

  Clon, in Ross, granted by earl of Ross to Walter de Moravia.

  Clontarf, the battle of.

  Clouston, J. Storer;
    _A Branch of the Family_;
    Orkney trithing.


  Cobbie Row, ruins of the castle of Kolbein Hruga, in Wyre.

  Coire, Loch;
    lands probably held by Moddan family.

  Coire-na-fearn, (Cornefern) Strathnavern;
    part of Johanna's estate.

  Collingwood, W.G., on Thorfinn as "king of Catanesse.";
    see _Scandinavian Britain_, transl. _William the Wanderer_.

  Columba, St.;
    Adamnan's Life of;
    mission to Picts, settlement in Iona;
    clergy removed to Dunkeld;
    relics removed;
    patron saint of Scot and Pict;
    his cult and culture destroyed by Norse.

  Columban settlements of hermits and missionaries;
    Columban church;
    replaced by Catholic.

    discovered America long after Norsemen.

  Comyn, Alexr.;
    see Buchan, earl of.

  Comyn, John, m. Matilda heiress of Malcolm, earl of Angus.

  Comyn, Walter;
    earl of Menteith.

  Constantine I;
    viking raids.

  Constantine II;
    Norse seize C. and S.

  Constantine III;
    Danish attacks.

  Constantinople (Micklegarth).

  Coracles, Pictish boats.

  Cortachy, advowson of.

  Craig Carrill Broch;
    Roman tablets found.

  Crakaig, crooked bay, now drained.

  Creich, owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    including Assynt;
    granted by Hugo Freskyn to Gilbert while archdeacon of Moray.

  Crinan, Abthane of Dunkeld, m. Bethoc, dau. of Malcolm II.

  Croc Skardie;
    (?) Sigurd's Howe.

    northern Suter of;
    Norse place-names;
    Macbeth's property.

  Cruithne and his seven sons.

  Curle, A.O.;
    early  monuments of Caith. and Sutherland.

  Cyderhall, see Sigurd's Howe.

  Dale, Dalar or Dalr, C.;
    earl Skuli slain;
    home of Moddan.

  Dalharrold, on River Naver;
    belonged to Johanna.

  Dalriadic kingdom.

  Dalrymple's Collections, on divorce;
    on earl Magnus II.

    earl Erlend killed.

    Irish Danes.


  Dasent, Sir G.W.;
    transl. _Orkneyinga Saga_, q.v.;
    _Oxford Essays_, q.v.;
    _Saga of Burnt Njal_, q.v.

  David I, king of Scotland;
    church organisation;
    earldom of Caithness held of him;
    his tutor John, bishop of Glasgow;
    visited by Sweyn Asleifarson;
    introduced feudal barons and charters;
    at Duffus Castle;
    by education a Norman knight.

  David II.

  David Haraldson, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    did not have earl Ragnvald's share of Caith. earldom;
    succeeded to a reduced territory;
    sole earl of Orkney;
    joint earl with earl John;

  Dawey (Dalvey).

  Death in bed, a reproach among Norse.

    earls Ragnvald and Harald hunted red deer and reindeer in
    red deer abounded in Cat.

  Deerness, Mull of;
    sea-fight between Thorfinn and Duncan I;
    king Hakon's fleet passed.

  Deerstalking, days of, Scrope.

  De Moravia, see under Freskyn.

    southern limit of Norse.

  Dirlot, or Dilred, in Strathmore, C.

  Dolfin, son of Maldred.

    Scots defeated by Danes.

  Donada, dau. of Malcolm II, m. Finnleac.

  Donald, supposed son of Malcolm III.

  Donald Bane, claimant to Scottish crown.

  Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    claimant of Scottish crown;
    his son Guthred slain;
    descended from Ingibjorg, widow of Thorfinn and Malcolm Canmore.

  Dornoch (Durnach);
    supposed dedication of Cathedral;
    monks to be protected;
    owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    in earldom of Caithness;
    cathedral of St. Barr;
    excluded from earldom of earl David;
    part granted by Hugo Freskyn to Gilbert;
    Embo near D., Norse defeated;
    existed in Norse times;
    cathedral lands;
    bishop Adam buried in;
    traditional origin of name.

  Dornock, Dumfriesshire, deriv.


  Dougal of the Isles, in Orkney;
    joined Hakon's expedition.

  Douglas, family of.

  Dovyr, tofftys de;
    part of Johanna's estate;
    from Gael. for water, identified as River and Loch Naver.

    played by St. Ragnvald.

    Sweyn killed at.


    near Burghead or Turfness;
    castle built by Freskyn de Moravia;
    estates owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    Freskyn, lord of;
    estate succeeded to by Walter Freskyn;
    William MacFrisgyn second lord of;
    chapel of St. Lawrence;
    Freskyn's fortress checked Norse raids;
    king David's visit;
    rector of St. Peter's.


  Dugald, king of Sudreys;
    intercepted the Scotch fine on C.

  D'Umphraville, Gilbert--earl of Angus;
    m. Matilda, countess of Angus.

  D'Umphraville, Gilbert--earl of Angus;
    son of Matilda.


  Dunbar, Sir Archibald; _Scottish Kings_, q.v.

  Dunbarton, Dun-bretan, fort of the Britons.

  Duncan I;
    Karl Hundason;
    at North Berwick;
    defeated by earl Thorfinn off Deerness;
    and at Turfness;
    his death and age;
    created Moddan, his sister's son, earl of Caithness.

  Duncan II, king of Scotland;
    son of Malcolm and Ingibjorg.

  Duncan, earl;
    father of Dufnjal.

  Duncan, earl of Angus.

  Duncan, maormor of Duncansby;
    m. Groa;
    his dau. Grelaud.

  Duncan, earl of Fife;
    dau. Afreka m. Harald Maddadson.

  Duncansby or Dungallsby.

  Dundas, Sir David.

  Dunfermelyn, Reg.

    Bishop Andrew a Culdean monk of.

  Dungal's Noep, C.;

    clergy of Iona removed to, eccl. capital for Scots and Picts;
    capital of southern Picts;
    bishopric founded;
    Andrew, bishop of Caith., abbot of.

  Dunnet Head.

    charter room;
    Robert, legendary 2nd earl of Sutherland, founder (?);
    MS. of Constitution of diocese;
    Norse derivation.

  Dunskaith, Castle of.

  Dunstable, Annals of.

  Durness (Dyrness);
    clan Mackay;
    in old earldom of Caithness;
    Asleifarvik, anchorage of Hakon's fleet;
    raided by Norse in retreat from Largs;
    Seanachaistel, chaistel;
    MacHeth settlement.

    martyrdom of St. Magnus;
    bishop John from Athole visited.

  Einar Oily-tongue;
    slew Havard jarl.

    wrecked off Shetland;
    sailed with earl Ragnvald to the East;
    his treachery;
    and desertion.

  Ekkjal, Norse name of Oykel.

    southern limit of conquest of earl Sigurd I;
    indentification disputed;
    earl Paul's journey to Athole;
    in Sweyn's track to burn Frakark;
    Atjokl's bakki.

  Eclipse of sun in Orkney, Augt. 5th, 1263.

  Eddirdovir, castle of, at Redcastle.


  Edgar, claimant to Scottish crown.

  Einar Sigurdson, earl;
    his slaughter.

    cathedral, built by Andrew, bishop of Moray;
    Johanna granted lands in Strathnaver for the cathedral;
    constitution of diocese based on Lincoln;
    guides for Sweyn.

  Elin, dau. of Eric Stagbrellir;
    at home near Loch Naver;
    she, or sister, m. Gilchrist, earl of Angus, and was mother of
      Magnus II, earl of Caithness.

    abounded in Cat;
    horns found.


  Ellwick (Ellidarvik).

  Embo, near Dornoch;
    Norse defeated and their "prince" slain, to whom the Ri-Crois erected.

  Erde-houses, of Pictish times.

  Erg (Gaelic, airigh), a sheiling, Norse, setr;
    pl. ergin, sheilings, in Asgrim's Ergin.

  Eric bloody-axe.

  Erik the Red, Saga of.

  Eric Stagbrellir, son of Audhild, brought up in Kildonan by Frakark;
    sole male survivor of Moddan line;
    m. Ingigerd, dau. of earl St. Ragnvald, united the Erlend and Moddan
    tried to reconcile earls Ragnvald and Harold;
    probably got earl Ottar's lands on the death of earl Erlend;
    viking raid to Hebrides and Scilly Isles;
    his son Harald Ungi made earl of Orkney and Caithness (excluding
    his son, Ragnvald;
    line represented by Snaekoll Gunni's son.

  Eric Streita;
    husband of Audhild, dau. of Thorleif.

  Erlend Haraldson, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    heir of earl Ottar;
    granted half earldom of Caith.;
    granted half earldom of Orkney;
    supported by Sweyn;
    in Shetland;
    last of male line of Thorfinn Sigurdson;
    nearest heir, Ragnvald Gudrodson, king of Man;
    grandson of Hakon Paulson;
    not Erlend Ungi.

  Erlend Torf-Einarson, earl;
    slain in England.

  Erlend Thorfinnson;
    joint earl of Orkney and Caith. with his brother Paul;
    at battle of Stamford Bridge;
    banished to Norway where he died;
    his descendants;
    his line of heirs;
    Scottish policy as to succession;
    Snaekoll Gunni's son, chief of line;
    Skene's theory;
    the converse theory that Magnus of Angus m. the nameless dau. of earl
      John, through whom he got the title, and Paul's lands;
    his share of earldom of Caithness;
    inherited by Johanna of Strathnaver;
    his line (excepting Harald Ungi) excluded from Orkney during rule
      of earl Harold, David and John;
    succession to Erlend lands in C.

  Erlend Ungi;
    eloped with Margret, mother of earl Harold Maddadson, to Mousa Broch;
    reconciled to earl Harold, with whom he went to Norway;
    not earl Erlend.

  Erling Erlendson;
    in Norwegian expedition to Wales;
    probably killed in Ireland.

  Erling Ivar's son;
    in Hakon's expedition;
    in raid on Dyrnes.

  Erlingson, Thorsteinn;
    _Ruins of Saga-time in Iceland_, (Viking Society, extra series).

  Ermengarde, queen.

  Erriboll, Loch;
    the Goafiord, or Hoanfiord, Hakon's fleet in;

  Euphemia, wife of Walter Freskin de Moravia of Duffus, dau. of
      Ferchar Mac-in-Tagart, earl of Ross.

  Evelix, River;

  Eystein, king of Norway;
    seized earl Harold Maddadson;
    invaded Aberdeen.

  Eysteinsdal, or Ousedale, near the Ord of Caithness;
      to which king William marched against earl Harold

  Eyvind Urarhorn.

  Fair Isle;


    old parish was Johanna's estate in Strathnaver;
    Borve Castle.

  Federeth I (Fedrett), William de;
    m. Christian, dau. of Freskin and Johanna, and got one fourth of
    Caithness lands.

  Federeth II, William de;
    son of W.F. and Christian Freskin, sold his fourth of C. to Sir
      Reginald Chen III.

  Felix, bishop of Moray;

  Feranach, Broch at;
    Frakark's residence (?).


    introduced into Scotland by Alexander I and David I.

  Fib (Fife).

  Fidach (Moray).

    conquests by earl Thorfinn.

  Finleac or Finlay MacRuari, maormor of Moray;
    fought earl Sigurd at Skidamyre;
    m. dau. of Malcolm II.

  Finn Arnason, father of Ingibjorg;
    and of Sigrid.

  Firth par., Orkney;
    Paplay, Thora's residence.

  Flandrensis, not applied to Freskin de Moravia.

  Flatey Book;
    Thorstein the Red;
    earls of Orkney;
    story of Barth;
    continuation of _Orkneyinga Saga_;
    earl Ragnvald's half of Caith. earldom;
    extent of Harold's later earldom;
    battle of Skitten.

  Fleet, Loch;
    no longer reaches to Pittentrail.

  Floruvoe, Floruvagr;
    battle in 1135;
    battle in 1194.

    rebellion in Moray;
    earl John's hostage dau.;


  Forsie, Force of Saga.


  Fotla, Ath-Fodla;

  Frakark, or Frakok, dau. of Moddan;
    m. Liot Nidingr;
    earl Harald Slettmali with her in N. Kildonan;
    banished from Orkney, went to her homesteads in Sutherland;
    earl Ragnvald seeks her aid;
    burnt alive;
    Freskyn I her contemporary;
    Johanna of Strathnaver a connection;
    her residence.

  Fraser, or Fresel, of Beauly.

  Fraser, Sir William;
    genealogy of Freskyn family;
    on Johanna of Strathnaver;
    _The Sutherland Book_, q.v.

  Freskyn de Moravia, and family;
    the family the mainstay of Scottish rule in the north;
    superintended building of Kinloss Abbey;
    ancestor of earls of Sutherland;
    built Duffus Castle;
    not a Fleming;
    a Pict or Scot, and ancestor of families of Athole, Bothwell,
      Sutherland and probably Douglas;
    his family in Caith.;
    great-great-grandfather of Freskin the younger, husband of Johanna;
    two branches of family settled north of the Oykel;
    Freskyn, of Strabrock and Moray, its two branches in Sutherland
      and Caith.;
    founder of the family;
    entertained king David I at Duffus Castle;
    year of death;
    his two sons;
    father of William MacFriskyn, and Hugo the witness;
    derivation of name;
    revised pedigree;
    he and successors appointed guardians of Moray and Nairn;
    defended Moray against the Norse;
    the family introduced into Sutherland;
    no thanes of this line in Sutherland;
    name also spelt Fretheskin;
    his neighbour in Moray, earl Waltheof.
    (See Appendix, Pedigree.)

  Freskin de Moravia, younger, lord of Duffus;
    eld. son of Sir Walter de Moravia;
    in Strathnaver and Caith.;
    m. Johanna of Strathnaver;
    his date fixed;
    by marriage became owner of lands in Strathnaver and of a
      moiety of earldom of Caith.;
    born in or after 1225, lord of Duffus by 1248;
    m. 1245-1250;
    nephew of William, earl of Sutherland;
    signatory to National Bond;
    d. 1260-1263;
    buried in church of Duffus;
    his maternal uncle, William MacFerchar, earl of Ross;
    possible violent death.
    (See Appendix, Pedigree.)

  Freskyn, Andrew, son of Hugo F. of Sutherland;
    parson of Duffus, bishop of Moray.

  Freskyn, Andrew, son of William son of Freskyn;
    parson of Duffus.

  Freskin, Christian;
    dau. of Freskin younger and Johanna of Strathnaver, m. William
      de Fedrett, had one fourth of Caithness, which their son
      resigned to her sister's husband, Sir Reginald Chen III.

  Freskyn, Hugo, son of Freskyn;
    the witness, uncle of Hugo de Moravia of Sutherland.

  Freskyn, Hugo, eld. son of William MacFreskyn;
    his family settled north of the Oykel and owned Sutherland;
    northern boundary of his estate;
    ancestor of the de Moravias, or Murrays, of Sutherland;
    called "my lord" by his younger brother, William;
    his family;
    burial place;
    succession to Morayshire estates;
    grant of Sutherland;
    not earl;
    his lordship of Sutherland, excluded from earldom of Caithness
     as inherited by earl David;
    grant to Gilbert, archdeacon of Moray;
    of Strabrock, Duffus and Sutherland, father of Walter de Moravia
      of Duffus, whose son m. Johanna of Strathnaver;
    his eld. son, William;
    a witness.

  Freskin, Mary;
    dau. of Freskin, younger, and Johanna of Strathnaver, m. Sir
      Reginald Chen II, had one fourth of Caithness.

  Freskyn, Walter, de Moravia of Duffus;
    son of Hugo F. of Sutherland, succeeded to Strabrock and Duffus;
    his wife;
    known as Sir Walter de Moravia;
    of Duffus;
    his son, Freskin, m. Johanna of Strathnaver;
    grant of land in Clon from earl of Ross.

  Freskyn, Walter, of Petty.

  Freskyn (MacFreskyn), William, eld. son of Freskyn de Moravia;
    charter of Strabrock and other lands in Lothian and Moray;
    his sons;
    omitted in _Sutherland Book_;
    second lord of Duffus and Strabroc;
    his eldest son, Hugo of Sutherland.

  Freskyn, William, _dominus Sutherlandiae_, first earl of Sutherland;
    eld. son of Hugo F.;
    de Sutherland;
    cr. earl of Sutherland:
    _dominus Sutherlandiae_ from about 1214;
    uncle of Freskyn the younger;
    his lands bounded by those of Johanna on the north and east;
    was probably Johanna's guardian;
    cr. earl after 10th October 1237;
    repulsed a Norse invasion (?) at Embo;

  _N.B.--All these Freskyns' name was de Moravia, not Freskyn.--J.G._

  Freskyn, William, of Petty, son of William son of Freskyn.

  Freswick (now Bucholie) Castle, (Lambaborg).

  Fretheskin, see Freskin.

  Frida, dau. of Kolbein Hruga, m. Andres, son of Sweyn Asleifarson.

    Wemund, monk of.

  Gaedingar, too, 152 (n. 22).

    superseded Pictish;
    in Sutherland full of Norse words;
    Psalms translated into by Gilbert, bishop;
    Gaelic blood crossed with Norse produced the Saga;
    Gaelic in Sutherland and Caithness included many Norse words;
    a trustworthy vehicle of Norse.

    Sweyn's castle;
    robbed by earl Harald;
    Sweyn's life and large drinking hall.

  Gall, Eilean nan;
    traditional combat.

  Gall-gaels, or Gaelic strangers;
    mixed Gaelic-Norse;
    held sea from Lewis to Isle of Man;
    of Argyll.

    part of Valentia;
    subdued by earl Thorfinn;
    rebellion subdued;
    Roland of, defeated Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    rebellion put down by king Alexr. II.

  Geographical Collections, (W. Macfarlane).

  Gibbon, Gillebride or Gilbert, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    son or brother of earl Magnus II;
    his dau. Matilda m. Malise, earl of Stratherne;
    d. 1256, succ. by son Magnus III.

  Gilbert, alleged earl of Orkney.

  Gilbert d'Umphraville, earl of Angus, m. Matilda, countess of Angus.

  Gilbert d'Umphraville, earl of Angus;
    son of Matilda.

  Gilbert de Moravia, archdeacon of Moray;
    grant of Skelbo, etc.;
    afterwards became bishop of C.;
    founded cathedral at Dornoch, in which he was buried.

  Gilbert, son of Gillebride, earl of Angus, and uncle of Magnus, earl of

  Gilchrist, earl of Angus;
    m. as 2nd wife, Ingibiorg or Elin, dau. of Eric Stagbrellir;
    Skene's theory;
    converse theory;
    pedigree of Angus family;
    charter of south Caith. to his son Magnus;
    his death.


  Gillebert, or Gillebryd, son of Angus.

  Gillebride, earl of Angus;
  his sons;
  grandson (not son) Magnus II, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
  his death.

  Gilli Odran.

    John bishop of, mission to Orkney;
    Herbert, bishop of, grant of Borthwick Church.

  Glendhu, Loch;
    identified as Murkfjord.

  Goa-fiord, or Hoanfiord, (now Loch Erriboll);
    Hakon's fleet at;
    Eilean Hoan retains the name.

    viking ship.

  Golsary, the shelling of Gol, in Latheron, Caithness, cf. Golspie.

  Golspie (formerly  Kilmalie);
    owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    (Gol's-by) formerly Platagall.

  Good men.


  Gospatric, eld. son of Maldred.

  Goudie, Gilbert;
    transl. _Orkneyinga Saga_;
    _Antiquities of Shetland_.

  Grants, Normans.

  Gratiana, wife of William the Wanderer.

  Gray, Thomas;
    _The Fatal Sisters_.


  Grelaud, dau. of Duncan, maormor of C.

    St. Ragnvald traded at, met Harald Gillikrist.

  Gritgard, son of Moldan.

  Groa, dau. of Thorstein the Red, m. Duncan of Duncansby.

  Groa, wife of Macbeth.

  Gudrun, sister of Anlaf, earl of C.

  Guillaume le Roi.


  Gunn, in Darratha-Liod.

  Gunn family;

  Gunn, Adam;
    _Sutherland and the Reay Country_.

  Gunnhild, wife of Eric Bloody-axe, in Orkney.

  Gunnhild, Erlend's daughter, sister of earl St. Magnus, m. Kol;
    her descendants.

  Gunnhilda, dau. of earl Harold Maddadson and Hvarflod.

  Gunni, brother of Sweyn Asleifarson;

    m. (as 2nd husband) Ragnhild sister of earl Harald Ungi;
    probably grandson of Sweyn Asleifarson;
    became chief of Moddan family.

  Guthorm Sigurdson, earl.

  Guthred, son of Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    led rebellion in Moray and slain.

  Hadrian's Wall.

    battle, (872).

  Hailes, lord;
    on forfeiture of earl Harold Maddadson;
    _Annals of Scotland_, q.v.;
    case of Elizabeth claimant of earldom of Sutherland.

  Hakon Hakonson, king of Norway;
    his mother's ordeal;
    expedition to Scotland;
    account of his expedition (1263);
    died in the bishop's palace, Kirkwall;
    result of expedition.

  Hakon Sverri's son, king of Norway;
    his son Hakon.

  Hakon Haroldson, son of Earl Harold Maddadson and Afreka;
    foster-child of Sweyn Asleifarson;
    probably fell with Sweyn at Dublin;
    with Sweyn;
    his death.

  Hakon Paulson, earl;
    went to Norway;
    in Norwegian expedition to Wales;
    returned to Orkney;
    slew the king's steward;
    dispute with earl Magnus;
    slew his cousin Dufnjal, and Thorbjorn in Burrafirth;
    seized Magnus' share of earldom;
    slew St. Magnus;
    sole earl;
    pilgrimage to Rome and Jerusalem, builder of the round church of
    Helga and their children;
    his son Paul by a lawful wife;
    his descendant Ragnvald Godrodson;
    Norse favourite for earldom of C., as against Magnus, had to
      conquer C.;
    mixed blood;
    his grandson Erlend.

  Hakonar Saga;
    record until 13th cent.

  Halfdan Halegg, or long-shanks;
    slain by Torf-Einar.

    source of Thurso River in;
    Moddan lands;
    first cathedral of bishopric;
    bishop's house;
    residence of Chen family inherited from Johanna of Strathnaver;
    Johanna's estate;
    castle of Reginald Chen III;
    Spittal of St. Magnus.

  Hall o' Side, Iceland.

  Hallad Ragnvaldson, earl.

  Halvard, an Icelander.

  Halvard of Force;
    called Hoskuld also.

  Halvard the Red.

  Hanef, Norse commissioner;
    aids Snaekoll.

  Harald, of N. Ronaldsay;
    slain by Ulf the Bad.

  Harald Gillikrist;
    St. Ragnvald fought for him at Floruvoe.

  Harold Godwinson, king of England, defeated Harald Hardrada.

  Harald Hakonson Slettmali (smooth-talker), earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    son of earl Hakon and Helga;
    held Caithness;
    his death;
    his Moddan kinsmen.

  Harald Sigurdson Hardrada, king of Norway;
    killed at Stamford Bridge.

  Harald Harfagr;
    battle of Hafrsfjord, (872);
    subdued Orkney and Shetland which he erected into an earldom;
    cr. Torf-Einar earl of Orkney;
    second expedition to Orkney;
    imitated Charlemagne's feudalism.

  Harald Jonson;
    son of John, earl of Caithness;
    left as hostage at Bergen;
    drowned, (1226).

  Harold Maddadson, earl;
    son of Margret, Hakon's daughter and Maddad, earl of Atholl;
    earl St. Ragnvald ruled Caith. as his guardian;
    to Norway with earl Ragnvald;
    seized at Thurso by king Eystein;
    outlawed Gunni;
    conflict with earl Erlend Haraldson;
    reconciled to earl Ragnvald at Thurso;
    quarrels with Sweyn and robbed his house;
    annual deer hunt in Caith.;
    present at earl Ragnvald's slaughter;
    seized Ragnvald's share of earldom;
    became sole earl;
    forfeited in 1196;
    later rebellions and loss of lands;
    expedition to Ross and Moray;
    subdued by king William;
    imprisoned for failure to deliver hostages;
    deprived of Sutherland;
    earl Ragnvald's half of Caith. conferred on Harald Ungi;
    his grandsons;
    his heir, Thorfinn;
    fled to Isle of Man;
    defeated earl Harald Ungi;
    king William conferred Caith. on Ragnvald Gudrodson;
    defeated in Caithness by Ragnvald;
    had one of Ragnvald's stewards slain, mutilated the bishop, drove
      the stewards out;
    son Thorfinn mutilated and died in prison;
    king William marched with an army to Caith., and Harold ultimately
      came to terms;
    negotiated with king John of England;
    extent of his later earldom;
    deprived of Shetland;
    character and personal appearance;
    his two wives and descendants.

  Harald Ungi;
    earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    his parents;
    heir of Moddan lands;
    fared to Norway;
    at home near Loch Naver;
    grant of half earldom of Orkney;
    grant of half of Caithness (exclusive of Sutherland);
    Invaded Orkney, defeated and slain in Caithness;
    line represented by Snaekoll Gunni's son;
    his share of earldom of Caithness never granted to the Paul line;
    probably held by Moddan line;
    pedigree ceases;
    sister m. earl of Angus;
    date of death;
    his half of Caithness earldom;
    his heirs, earl Magnus II and Johanna;
    succeeded to earldom through a female.

  Haroldswick, Unst;
    said to have been called after king Harald.

  Havard Thorfinnson, earl;
    m. Ragnhild, k. Eric's dau.

  Hebrides (see also Sudreys);
    Vikings, subdued by king Harald Harfagr;
    Norse influence on Gaelic;
    under Norway;
    raided by Sweyn;
    Norse expedition against south H. assisted by earl John;
    king Alexander's naval expedition;
    king Alexr. II sent embassy to Norway to get cession of;
    harried by earl of Ross;
    king Hakon's expedition;
    Scottish expedition;
    ceded to Scotland;
    conquered by Alexander III;
    ceded by Norway to Scotland.


  Helena, dau. of earl Harald Maddadson and Afreka.

  Helga, dau. of Moddan;
    associated with Helgarie;
    concubine of earl Hakon;
    banished from Orkney;
    her grandson, earl Erlend.

  Helga Ulfs-datter, Sanday, Orkney.

  Helgarie, near Helmsdale.

  Helgi, Harald's son, N. Ronaldsay, elopes with Helga Ulfsdatter.

  Helgi Njal's son.

  Helliar-holm, Ellar-holm.

    strath in Sutherland, Frakark;
    H. Water;
    Hjalmundal, the strath, not village.

  Henry I of England;
    visited by earl St. Magnus.

  Henry II of England;
    wars in France,.

  Henry III of England;
    his sister Joanna, m. Alexr. II of Scotland;
    his dau. Margaret m. Alexr. III of Scotland.

  Henry III, emperor of Germany;
    earl Thorfinn's visit.

  Henry, prince;
    son of king David I;

  Henry, son of Harold Maddadson by Afreka;
    claimed Ross;
    date of death.

  Henry, bishop of Orkney;
    in whose palace, in Kirkwall, king Hakon died.

  Herbjorg, 3rd dau. of earl Paul Thorfinnson.

  Herbjorg, dau. of Sigrid;
    m. Kolbein Hruga.

  Herborga, dau. of earl Harald Maddadson.

  High Church (ha-kirkja), Halkirk.

  Highlanders of Scotland (Skene).

  Hill fort;
    Ben-y-griam Beg, Caithness.

  Hjaltalin, Jon;
    transl. _Orkneyinga Saga_.

  Hlodver Thorfinnson, earl;
    m. Audna.

  Hoanfiord, or Goa-fiord, (Loch Erriboll);
    Hakon's fleet at;
    Eilean Hoan.

  Hoctor Common;
    granted to bishop of C.

  Hofn, Caithness;
    Hlodver's howe.



    Norse skali described.

    earl Moddan's burning, in Thurso;
    Olaf Hrolfson, in Duncansby;
    Frakark, in Sutherland;
    earl Waltheof, in Moray.

  Hoxa, South Ronaldsay;
    Thorfinn Hausa-kliufr buried.

  Hrolf the Ganger.

  Hrollaug Rognvaldsson.

  Hrossey, now Mainland, Orkney.

  Hundi (possibly Crinan).

  Hundi Sigurdson.

  Hut-circles of Pictish times.

  Hvarflod, or Gormflaith, dau. of Malcolm MacHeth, m. earl Harold
    date of birth.

    Pictish mission;
    Aud's settlement;
    Hrollang Rognvaldsson settled;
    viking settlement;
    the skali described;
    Jean Cabot first heard of America in;
    Christianity accepted;
    blood-rain, ib., Norsemen in;
    ruins of Saga-time.

  Icelandic Annals;
    earls of Orkney.

  Inga Saga, transl.

  Ingibjorg, Finn Arnason's daughter, m. earl Thorfinn Sigurdson;
    after Thorfinn's death m. Malcolm III;
    cousin of queen Thora of Norway;
    her descendant, Donald Ban MacWilliam.

  Ingibiorg, daughter of earl Hakon and Helga;
    m. Olaf Billing;
    her grandson, Ragnvald Gudrodson, of Man.

  Ingibiorg, dau. of Eric Stagbrellir;
    at home near Loch Naver;
    she or her sister m. Gilchrist, earl of Angus.

  Ingirid or Ingigerthr, only dau. and child of earl Ragnvald, m. Eric
    her children;
    date of birth;
    probably the same Ingigerthr commemorated in Maeshowe runes.

  Ingirid, sister of Kali (St. Ragnvald), m. Jon Peterson.

  Ingirid, sister of Sweyn Asleifarson;
    m. Thorbiorn Klerk.


  Innes, Familie of.

  Innes family;
    Berowald the Fleming.

  Innes, Cosmo;
    _Orig. Par. Scot._, q.v.;
    genealogy of Freskyn family.


    St. Columba's settlement.

    Duncan I;
    Sweyn Asleifarson's raids.

  Islandicae, Origines.

  Ivar Rognvaldsson.

    pilgrimages to.

  Joanna, queen of Alexander II, possibly name-mother of Johanna of
    dau. of king John, and sister of king Henry II of England.

  Johanna of Strathnaver, lady;
    m. Freskin de Moravia of Duffus;
    her estate;
    her father;
    relationship to Snaekoll Guuni's son;
    supposed dau. of earl John;
    Skene's theory that she inherited earl John's, i.e. earl Paul's,
      half of the earldom without the title;
    the opposite theory, that she inherited Erlend lands;
    Skene's opinion;
    her daughters;
    Skene's suggestion that she was the hostage dau. of earl John, and
      given in marriage to Freskin;
    Fraser's criticism of Skene;
    her grandson, Reginald Chen III, in possession of half of Caithness
      and resided in Halkirk and Latheron;
    granted land in Strathnaver to the bishop of Moray;
    her estate in Strathnaver;
    her connection with Moddan family and descent from Harald Ungi's
      sister Ragnhild;
    her inheritance of Moddan and Erlend lands;
    her right to half share of Harald Ungi's half share of Caithness
    her title to Strathnaver lands not derived through earl John;
    circumstantial evidence against her being a dau. of earl John,
      never claimed any share of earldom of Orkney;
    Skene's opinion that she was a dau. of earl John based on name
    theory as to her being a dau. of Snaekoll, and, as such, heiress of
      large estates, made a ward by the king, whose queen was Johanna;
    her husband's lineage;
    suggested born by 1232 at latest, when her supposed father,
      Snaekoll, went to Norway, but not before 1225;
    possibility of her being a dau. of a younger child of Ragnhild and
      born later than 1225;
    her guardian;
    her lands bounded those of the lord of Sutherland;
    d. ca. 1269;
    her children and estates;
    succ. to Erlend and Moddan lands in C.;
    owned Dalharrold;
    she did not own any lands in south C., which were acquired by
      R. Chen III, i.e., Latheron and Wick;
    she probably owned Far and Halkirk, but not Latheron.

  John, king of England.

  John, king of the Sudreys.

  John o' Groat's;

  John, bishop of Caithness;
    mutilated by earl Harald;
    succeeded by Adam;
    neglect to collect Peter's Pence;
    date of death.

  John, bishop (of Glasgow).

  John Haroldson, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    from whom Snaekoll Gunni's son claimed Ragnvald lands in Orkney;
    shared earldom with his brother, earl David;
    succeeded David as sole earl of Orkney and of Caithness;
    his dau. given as hostage;
    letters from earl Skuli;
    at Bergen;
    at the burning of bishop Adam;
    his castle at Brawl;
    the lordship of Sutherland not in his earldom;
    visited Bergen;
    his hostage dau. his only heir;
    assisted Norse against Hebrides;
    favoured Norway;
    representative of line of Paul and Harold Maddadson;
    attacked and slain by Snaekoll;
    his supposed dau. Johanna;
    his nameless dau. m. Magnus of Angus;
    succession to earldom;
    theories as to his daughter's marriage;
    treaty with king William;
    lands confiscated and restored;
    the last male of the Paul line;
    Johanna's title not derived through him;
    his nameless dau. probably wife of earl Magnus II;
    reasons why Johanna was not his dau.;
    probably named after king John of England;
    his legal successor, his nameless dau.;
    sole earl of O.;
    his sister's son, Jon Langlifson, in 1263;
    succeeded in earldom of Orkney by Magnus II;
    his castle at Brawl;
    joint earl with David;
    Matilda not his daughter's name.

  Jon Langlifson.

  Jon  Peterson, m. Ingirid, sister of St. Ragnvald.

  Jury trial.

  Kalf Arnason.

  Kalf Skurfa.

  Kali Ragnvald Kolson.

  Kari Solmundarson.

  Karl Hundason, name of Duncan I, in Saga.

  Keith, or Mar;
    Ce, Pictish province.


  Kenneth, k. of Scots.

  Kentigern, or Mungo, St.

  Kerrera, near Oban.

  Kerrow-Garrow, (Eddrachilles).

  Kerrow-na-Shein, i.e. Chen's quarter.

    Frakark's homesteads;
    connection with Scone;
    owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    earl Ragnvald sends messengers to Frakark;
    part of lordship of Sutherland;
    old name Scir-Illigh.

  Kildonan, North;
    earl Harald Slettmali brought up;
    Frakark burnt.

  Kilmalie (now Golspie).

  Kilravock (Rose).

    Cistercian abbey.

  Kinloss, Records.

    cathedral built;
    earl Ragnvald Brusi-son resided at;
    seized by earl Thorfinn;
    relics of St. Magnus removed to cathedral;
    king Hakon died in bishop's palace;
    St. Magnus' cathedral.


  Kolbein Hruga;
    m. Herbjorg;
    his castle in Wyre.

  Kyleakin, or the Kyle of Hakon.

    owned Hugo Freskyn;
    in Sweyn's track to burn Frakark;
    in old earldom of Caithness.

  Lambaborg (Freswick Castle).

  Langdale (Langeval).

  Langlif, dau. of earl Harold Maddadson;
    marriage with Sæmund, abandoned;
    her son Jon.

  Largs, battle of;
    earl Magnus III never went to L.

  Larne Bay, Ulfreksfirth of Saga.

    Latheron hills, source of Thurso River;
    Moddan lands;
    residence of Chens in 14th cent.;
    in South C.;
    not owned by Johanna;

    Rafn, of Caithness.

  Lawrence, chapel of St.;
    at Duffus.


  Lewis, the;
    passed by Hakon's fleet;
    Macaulays of.

  Lifolf Baldpate.

  Ljot Thorfinnson, earl of Orkney and Caith., m. Ragnhild, Eric's dau.;
    slew Skuli in C.;
    fought earl Macbeth in C.;
    buried at Stenhouse in Watten, C..

  Liot Nidingr, m. Frakark.

  Little Ferry, or Unes;
    Norse invasion;
    site of Norse Castle.

  Lohworuora, now Borthwick; church granted to bishop of Glasgow.

    water of;
    owned by Hugo Freskyn.

  Lothians, formed part of Valentia;
    Berenicians of.

  MacBain, A.;
    on seven Pictish provinces.

  Macbeth, king of Scotland;
    son of Finlay MacRuari;
    property in Ross and Cromarty;
    king of Scotland;
    visited Rome;

  MacFrisgyn, William;
    (see Freskyn, William).

  MacHeth, or MacAoidh, see Mackay, deriv. of name.

  MacHeth, Donald.

  MacHeth, Malcolm;
    earl of Ross;
    dau. Gormflaith m. Harold Maddadson;
    personated by Wemund.

  Mac-in-Tagart, Ferchar;
    see Ross, earl of.

  Mackay (MacHeth) clan;
    came from Moray to Sutherland;
    Freskyns guardians of Moray against MacHeths;
    occupation of Durness;
    rebellion of MacHeths of Moray;
    the chief m. dan. of bishop;
    children of Heth attacked Hakon's expedition;
    largely blended with Norse.

  Mackay, Iye Mor.

  Mackay, Book of, (Angus Mackay).

  MacWilliam, earl of Caithness (?) (Scots Peerage).

  Maddad, earl of Athole;
    m. Margret, dau. of earl Hakon Paulson;
    visited by Sweyn;
    his death.

  Maeshowe, runes of.

  Magbiod, or Macbeth, earl;
    fought at Skidamyre, C.

  Magnus the Good, king of Norway;
    grants Orkney to Ragnvald Brusison;
    Thorfinn's visit.

  Magnus Barelegs, king of Norway;
    expeditions to Scotland;
    father of Harald Gillikrist;
    why called "barelegs".

  Magnus the Blind, king of Norway;
    defeated by king Harald at Floruvoe.

  Magnus Erlingson, king of Norway;
    fell at Norafjord.

  Magnus Hakonson, crowned king of Norway in his father's lifetime;
    ceded Hebrides to Scotland.

  Magnus, king of Man;
    joined Hakon's expedition.

  Magnus, or Mangi, son of Eric Stagbrellir;
    fared to Norway, fell at Norafjord;
    his home.

  Magnus Erlendson, St., earl and saint;
    in expedition to Wales;
    in England and Wales;
    went to Caithness after king Magnus' death and received as earl there;
    his steward in Orkney killed by earl Hakon;
    dispute with earl Hakon;
    slew his cousin, Dufnjal, and Thorbjorn in Burrafirth;
    his marriage;
    his share seized by Hakon, upon which he went to England;
    burial in Birsay, and removal of relics to St. Magnus' Cathedral,
    legends, character and appearance;
    his sister, Gunnhild, m. Kol;
    his successor in estate;
    cathedral built by his nephew, earl Ragnvald;
    his heirs;
    Snaekoll Gunni's son, representative of his line;
    heirs of his share of Caithness earldom;
    his sagas see below;
    his life;
    took Erlend share of earldom;
    Scottish candidate for earldom of C.;
    mixed blood.

  Magnus II, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    obscure pedigree;
    erroneously called son of Gillebride of Angus;
    his name suggests a Norse mother of the line of earl Erlend;
    perambulated lands of Arbroath Abbey;
    not a minor on earl John's death;
    regarding his supposed son, Magnus;
    grant of earldom of south Caith.;
    probably possessed by line of Erlend;
    supposed marriage to the nameless dau. of earl John;
    got earl John's earldom lands and title;
    remainder of the earldom granted to him as son of a sister of earl
      Harald Ungi;
    neither he nor wife claimed any part of Strathnaver lands;
    Sutherland excluded from earldom;
    Erlend line excluded from Orkney since Ragnvald's death (excepting
      Harald Ungi);
    earl of Orkney;
    Caith. lands of the Angus line of earls;
    death, successor.

  Magnus III, Gibbonson, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    extent of his estate in Caithness;
    in Bergen with king Hakon (1263);
    his position as earl of C.;
    stayed behind under orders to follow Hakon;
    deserted him;
    reconciled to Alexander III and to king of Norway.

  Magnus, son of Havard Gunni's son.

  Magnus' Cathedral, St., Kirkwall;
    relics of saint were removed to;
    erected by St. Ragnvald;
    king Hakon temporarily buried in;
    built by Norse.

  Magnus Saga, St.

  Magnus Saga the Longer.

  Magnus Saga the Short.

  Magnus Hakonson Saga.

  Magnus, Spittal of St., near Halkirk.

  Magnusson, Eirikr;
    transl. of Darratha-liod.

  Maiming, made a Northman impossible.

  Mainland, Orkney;
    Thorfinn's Hall;
    meeting between earls Hakon and Magnus.

  Malbrigde of the buck-tooth.

  Malcolm I, (954).

  Malcolm II, king of Scotland;
    dau. m. Sigurd Hlodverson;
    kingdom of Scotland produced;
    contemporary records begin;
    defeated Norse at Mortlach;
    his daughters;
    Macbeth also supposed son of his sister;
    policy in Caith. and Orkney;
    kinsman, Moldan, maormor of Caith.;
    his dream of a consolidated kingdom realised.

  Malcolm III, Canmore, king of Scotland;
    m. Ingibjorg, Thorfinn's widow;
    m. 2nd, St. Margaret, introduced Saxon nobility;
    his son Duncan II, whose descendant was Donald Ban MacWilliam.

  Malcolm IV,
    granted half earldom of Caithness to Erlend Haraldson;
    defeated Somarled;
    his death.

  Malcolm, supposed son of Malcolm III.

  Malcolm, earl of Caithness and Angus;
    earl of Caith. (1232-36);
    earl of C. as guardian of a minor, as trustee or custos;
    his dau. heiress, and successors.

  Maldred, of Cumbria.

  Malise, earl of Stratherne;
    m. Matilda, dau. of Gibbon, earl.

  Malise II, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    heir of Matilda, dau. of earl Gibbon;
    conveyed Berridale, to Reginald More, and Reginald Chen III;
    descendant of the lines of Paul and Erlend.

  Mallard River;
    see Ardovyr,

  Mamgarvie, near Inverness.

    Sweyn's annual raids;
    earl Harold Maddadson in;
    Ragnvald Gudrodson, king of;
    returned to Man;
    king Magnus of M. joined Hakon's expedition;
    conquered by Alexander III after Largs;
    incorporated in Scotland.

  Maor and maormor, Pictish rulers.

  Margaret, St.;
    2nd wife of king Malcolm Canmore.

  Margaret's Hope, St.;

  Margret, earl Hakon's dau.;
    brought up by Frakark in Kildonan;
    m. Maddad, earl of Athole;
    visited by Sweyn;
    received her brother earl Paul, his fate;
    returned to Orkney, had a child by Gunni, Sweyn's brother;
    eloped with Erlend the Young;
    contemporary of Freskyn I;
    younger sister of Ingibiorg.

  Margret, dau. of earl Harold Maddadson and Afreka.

  Matilda, countess of Angus; heiress of Malcolm, earl of A.,
    m. (1) John Comyn;
    m. (2) Gilbert d'Umphraville, earl of A.

  Matilda, dau. of Gibbon, earl of Orkney and Caithness, m. Malise,
    earl of Stratherne.


    why no brochs?;
    Cirig, for Magh-Circinn, or, Mearns, a Pictish province.

  Melrose, Chronicle of;


    Fortrenn, a Pictish province.

  Michel, Francisque;
    _Chroniques Anglo-Normandes_.

  Minch, the,
    or Skotlands-fiorthr.

  Missel (probably Frisel or Fraser), in embassy to Norway.

  Moddan, earl of C.;
    sister's son of Duncan I;
    at North Berwick;
    slain by Thorkel Fostri;
    his family in Caithness.

  Moddan, in Dale, and family;
    possible son of earl Moddan;
    the clan and family;
    held the hills and upper parts of valleys;
    family and Pictish clansmen;
    family plots;
    clan harried by Sweyn;
    his daughters and estates;
    dau. Helga;
    Eric Stagbrellir's children sole heirs;
    family lands;
    Harald Ungi's title to Moddan lands;
    Gunni, Ragnhild's husband, became chief of M. clan;
    estates left to earl Erlend Haraldson, then went to Eric Stagbrellir;
    Snaekoll Gunni's son next heir to estates;
    Johanna inherited Moddan lands;
    estates passed to Norman families.

  Moldan, (see Moddan), of Duncansby;
  kinsman of Scots king;
  connection with Moddan family.

  Monuments of C. and S., early.

  Moravia, family, de;
    see Freskin.

  Moraviensis, Registrum Episcopatûs.

  Moray, province of;
    Pictish province of Fidach including Ross;
    northern limit of Roman penetration;
    no brochs;
    Norse influence;
    last Pictish province subdued by Scots;
    wars between kings of Alban and the Norsemen in;
    Pictish clergy driven from seaboard by Norse;
    Norse driven from laigh of M.;
    taken from Norse;
    Norse defeated at Mortlach;
    ravaged by earl Thorfinn Sigurdson;
    bishopric founded;
    estate of Freskyn de Moravia;
    earl Waltheof burnt in his house;
    a barrier to Scottish civilisation;
    Pictish province stretched across to the Minch;
    defeat of Picts of M. at Stracathro;
    Register of Moray;
    Freskyn estate;
    feudal barons repel Eystein's invasion;
    rebellion subdued;
    estates of Freskyn;
    earl Harold Maddadson's expedition;
    Freskyn family appointed guardians;
    rebellion of MacHeths;
    king William's expedition against thanes of Ross:
    revolt of Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    king Hakon's proposed raid (1263);
    no Norse place-names on seaboard;
    Pictish inhabitants scattered, the Mackays to Durness.

  Moray, bishops of;
    Andrew Freskyn;
    grant from Johanna of Strathnaver;
    Archibald, regrant to Reginald Chen II;

  Moray, Gilbert, archdeacon of and bishop of Caithness.

  Moray, Richard of;
    brother of Gilbert;
    fell repulsing Norse.

  Moray, Shaw's.

  More, Loch.

  More, Reginald;
    chamberlain of Scotland.

    first name of clan Mackay, MacHeth, or MacAoidh.

  Mortlach, in Moray;
    Norse defeated by Malcolm II.

  Morton, Reg. Hon. de, earl of Katanay.

  Mound, the;
    Craig Amlaiph near.

  Mounth, or Grampians, home of Caledonians.

  Mousa Broch;
    used by run-away honeymoon couples.

  Munch, P.A.;
    _History of Norway_.

  Mungo, or Kentigern, St., in Strathclyde and Pictland.

  Murkfjord or Myrkfjord (possibly Loch Glendhu).

  Murkle, C.

  Mydalr, Iceland.


  Naver, Loch;
    River Naver;
    lands of Moddan family;

  Naver, River;
    see Dovyr.


  Nerbon, sae-borg on the;
  Bilbao on the Nervion.

  Ness, now Caithness.
    See Cait and Caithness.

  New Spalding Club;
    _Records of Elgin_.

  Niorfa Sound (Straits of Gibraltar).

  Nisbet's Heraldry.

  Norafjord in Sogn.

    families accepted as chiefs;
    influence of, in Caithness and Sutherland.

  Norman architecture;
    St. Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall.

  Norse mythology;
    of early settlers in Britain.

    occupation of Caith. and Sutherland;
    no women brought;
    early Norse rulers;
    defeated at Mortlach;
    raids on Moray coast;
    Freskyns appointed guardians of Moray against;
    expedition against south Hebrides;
    invasion of Sutherland repulsed at Embo;
    law and language in Orkney and Shetland;
    intermarriage with Celts;
    influence of, on British law;
    religion of early settlers in British Isles;
    destroyed culture of St. Columba;
    enslaved aborigines in their colonies;
    their place-names in Scotland;
    settled on coasts and lower valleys;
    subdued by Scots in north;
    Gaelic language adopted by;
    few monuments in Scotland;
    domestic and ecclesiastical buildings of wood or stone;
    York Powell on;
    discovery of America, and Africa.

  Norse Influence on Celtic Scotland, (George Henderson).

  Northman and Pict.

    viking raids on British Isles;
    trade with Grimsby;
    earl Ragnvald visited king Ingi;
    earl Ragnvald returned from Jerusalem through Norway;
    Margaret, queen of N.;
    Scottish embassy to;
    Hebrides ceded to Scotland.

  Norway, kings of;
    Harald Harfagr, (860-933);
    Eric Bloody-axe, (930-935);
    Olaf Tryggvi's son, (995-1000);
    Magnus the Good, (1035-1047);
    Harald Sigurdson Hardrada, (1045-1066);
    Olaf Haraldson, (1067-1093);
    Magnus Barelegs, (1093-1103);
    Sigurd Magnusson, (1103-1130);
    Magnus the Blind, (1130-1135);
    Harald Gilli, (1130-1136);
    Eystein Haraldson, (1142-1157);
    Ingi, (1136-1161);
    Magnus Erlingson, (1162-1184);
    Sverrir, (1184-1202);
    Hakon, Sverri's son, (1202-1204);
    Hakon Hakonson, (1217-1263);
    Magnus Hakonson, (1263-1280);
    Christian I, (1459-1481), q.v.

  Norway, History of, P.A. Munch.

  Ochill, (Oykel).

  Odal lands;
    in Orkney;
    none in Cat.

    blood-eagle rite;
    worshipped by Norse in Britain;
    Sigurd Hlodverson died fighting for;
    and defeated at Clontarf.

  Olaf, king of Norway;
    received Thorfinn Sigurdson, earl of Orkney and Caithness;
    and Thorkel Fostri;
    his award;
    killed at Stiklastad.

  Olaf's Saga, St.;
    account of earls of Orkney.

  Olaf Haraldson Kyrre, king of Norway.

  Olaf Tryggvi's-son;
    conversion of Sigurd Hlodverson.

  Olaf Tryggvason Saga;
    account of earls of Orkney.

  Olaf Bitling, king of the Sudreys;
    m. Ingibiorg, daughter of earl Hakon.

  Olaf the White, king of Dublin;
    invasion of Scotland.

  Olaf, king of Man.

  Olaf Hrolfson, father of Sweyn and Gunni.

  Olaf, son-in-law of earl Harold Maddadson.

  Old-Lore Miscellany (Viking Society);
    authorship O.S.;
    _Orkney and Shetland Folk_.

  Old-shore (Asleifarvik).

  Oliphant family;
    charters, earldom of Caithness.

  Olvir Rosta;
    grandson of Frakark;
    aid sought by earl Ragnvald;
    defeated in sea fight;
    burned Sweyn's father, Olaf;
    fled before Sweyn and not heard of afterwards;
    no direct heirs;
    his contemporary, Freskyn I;
    supposed ancestor of Macaulays.

  Orcades, of Torfaeus;
    for transl. see Pope, Alex.

  Ord of Caithness;
    king William marched his army to, against earl Harald;
    Man of.

  Origines Parochiales Scotiae.

    St. Kentigern's mission;
    influence of Gael on Norse;
    foundation of Norse earldom;
    earls' attacks on north of Scotland;
    succession of earls;
    converted by Olaf Tryggvi's son;
    under Norway;
    first cathedral and bishop's seat at Birsay;
    double bishops;
    a contingent in expedition against Saxons;
    trade with Grimsby;
    the bishops;
    Sweyn's viking life;
    invasion of earl Harald Ungi;
    earl Harold Maddadson, after defeat by Ragnvald Gudrodson, fled to;
    Cobbie Row Castle, in;
    the gaedingar of the earl of Orkney;
    king Hakon at;
    and died in Kirkwall, in the palace of bishop;
    mortgaged to Scotland;
    adopted English with many Norse words;
    old Norse ballad sung in 18th cent.;
    proposed Scot. conquest after Norse reverse at Largs;
    annular eclipse of sun in 1263;
    Orkney and Shetland colonised mainly from the fjords north of Bergen;
    see also Orkney and Caithness, earls of.

  Orkney and Caithness, earls of;
  (see also under their individual names);
    Sigurd Eysteinson;
    Guthorm Sigurdson;
    Hallad Ragnvaldson;
    Torf-Einar Ragnvaldson;
    Arnkell, Erlend and Thorfinn Hausa-kliufr, sons of Torf-Einar;
    Arnfinn, Havard, Hlodver, Ljot and Skuli, sons of Thorfinn;
    Sigurd Hlodverson;
    Somarled, Brusi, Einar and Thorfinn, sons of Sigurd;
    Ragnvald Brusi's son;
    Paul Thorfinnson;
    Erlend Thorfinnson;
    Sigurd Magnusson, son of k. Magnus Barelegs;
    Hakon Paulson;
    St. Magnus Erlendson;
    Paul Hakonson the Silent;
    Harald Hakonson Slettmali;
    Erlend Haraldson;
    St. Ragnvald Kolson;
    Harald Ungi;
    Harold Maddadson;
    David Haroldson;
    John Haroldson;
    no pedigree of earls after John;
    diploma of earls unreliable;
    various theories as to genealogy of the earls after John;
    no claim to earldom of Orkney by Johanna of Strathnaver;
    diploma on earldom of Sutherland;
    Malcolm, earl of C. and Angus;
    Magnus II, son of Gilchrist, earl of Angus;
    Magnus III Gibbonson;
    Malise II, heir of Matilda, dau. of earl Gibbon;
    the earldom acquired through females;
    unknown earls;

  Orkney and Shetland Folk, (Viking Society, Old-lore Miscellany and
      reprint), A.W. Johnston.

  Orkney and Shetland, (Tudor);

  Orkney and Shetland Records, (Viking Society).

  Orkneyinga Saga (Rolls text and transl.);
    historical record until 12th cent.;
    battle of Turfness;
    Thorfinn's life;
    St. Magnus;
    Ragnvald and Sweyn Saga;
    its end;
    Somarled the Freeman slain;
    earl Harold Maddadson's family;
    Wick and Thurso;
    transl. by Hjaltalin and Goudie;
    Thorfinn's residence in C;
    residence of Frakark;
    Atjokl's Bakki.

  Orm, earl;
    m. Sigrid, not Ingibjorg, dau. of Finn Arnason.

    the earl's hall burned;
    round church;
    incident of the poisoned shirt;
    earl Paul's Yule feast, Sweyn slew Sweyn;
    Jarls' Bu;
    earl Ragnvald at.

    The Round Church and Earl's Bu of, (Viking Society Saga-Book),
      A.W. Johnston.

  Osmundwall, or Kirk Hope, Orkney;
    conversion of Sigurd Hlodverson;
    king Hakon's fleet in.

  Oswy, king.

  Ottar, earl in Thurso;
    his heir;
    son of Moddan in Dale;
    probably owned Thurso valley;
    paid wergeld to Sweyn;
    his lands left to earl Erlend Haraldson, and afterwards went to
      Eric Stagbrellir;
    his estates, forming the Moddan lands in Caith., held by Ragnhild
      and Gunni;
    Johanna of Strathnaver a connection.

  Ottar, son of Snaekoll Gunnison.

  Ousedale, or Eysteinsdal.

  Oxford Essays, (Sir G.W. Dasent);
    Norsemen in Iceland.

    boundary between Cat and Ross;
    identified as the Norse Ekkjal;
    family of Freskyn de Moravia settled north of the;
    in Sweyn's track to burn Frakark;
    crossed by king William.

  Papa Stronsay.

  Papa Westray.


  Paul Hakonson, the Silent, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    his mother, 52;
    lived in Orkney, 58;
    banished Frakark and Helga from Orkney, 59;
    sole earl, 60;
    not a speaker at things, 60;
    refused to share earldom with St. Ragnvald, 61;
    defeated earl Ragnvald, 62;
    seized his fleet in Shetland, 62;
    yule feast at Orphir, 62;
    kidnapped by Sweyn, 62;
    deported to Athole, his fate, 63.

  Paul Thorfinnson, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    joint earl of O. with his brother Erlend;
    at battle of Stamford Bridge;
    banished to Norway, where he died;
    his descendants;
    his daughters;
    Scottish policy regarding later succession in Caithness;
    Skene's theory as to Johanna of Strathnaver;
    the converse theory;
    John the last male of Paul's line;
    his share of earldom of C., descended to daughter and Angus line
      of C. earls.

  Pentland Firth.

    court held (1260);
    treaty of.

  Peter, St.

  Peter's church, St., Duffus.

  Peter's church, St., Thurso.

  Peter's pence.

  Petty, William Freskyn of.

    settlements of hermits and missionaries;
    Pictish church replaced by Catholic church;
    driven eastward and northward by Scots;
    seven provinces;
    P. and Northmen;
    hunters and fishers;
    brochs for defence, arms, etc.;
    non-seafaring Celts;
    never conquered by Romans;
    did not have mastery of sea in Norse times;
    Christian missions and Columban church;
    viking invasion;
    Pictish language superseded by Gaelic;
    never dispossessed of upper parts of valleys throughout Norse
    conquered by Scots;
    language, "P" Celtic;
    Picts of Athole, Moray, Ross and Cat;
    Pictish church and Pictish province of Ross and Moray resisted
      Scottish civilisation;
    Normans accepted as chiefs;
    their Christianity;
    Norse drove clergy from Orkney, N.E. Caithness, coasts of
      Sutherland and sea-board of Ross and Moray;
    Norse attacks on Picts, effect of;
    their lands seized by Norse.

  Pictish Nation and Church, The;
    (Rev. A.B. Scott), Pictish navy.

    St. Ninian's mission;
    St. Kentigern's mission.

  Picts and Scots, Chronicle of the;
    origin of brochs;
    the Pictish navy.

    Norse p.n. preserved;
    near brochs.

  Plantula, dau. of Malcolm II, m. Sigurd, earl of Orkney.

  Platagall, "flat of the stranger," old name of Golspie.

  Pluscardensis, Liber.

  Pope, Alexander, of Reay;
    a tradition of Snaekoll's return;
    transl. Torf.

    Innocent III, letter.

  Powell, York.

  Prehistoric races.

  Primrose J.;
    _Hist, and Antiq. of the Parish of Uphall_.

  Rafn the Lawman;
    chief of stewards of Caithness;
    remained as lawman;
    at bishop Adam's burning;
    in derivation of Dunrobin--Drum-Rafn.

  Ragnhild, dau. of Eric Bloody-axe.

  Ragnhild, dau. of Eric Stagbrellir;
    sister of earl Harald Ungi;
    m. (2) Gunni;
    by whom she had a son, Snaekoll;
    her children the only heirs of Ragnvald and of Moddan;
    at home near Loch Naver;
    m. (1) Lifolf Baldpate;
    Johanna of Strathnaver, her sole descendant after 1232;
    held Moddan lands.

  Ragnvald, jarl of Maeri;
    made first Norse earl of Orkney;
    slain in Norway.

  Ragnvald Brusi's son, earl of Orkney;
    personal appearance;
    at Stiklastad;
    in Russia;
    Thorfinn's claims and their sea fight;
    escaped to Norway;
    returned and burned Thorfinn's hall;
    his slaughter;
    his grave;
    Kali Kolson named after him.

  Ragnvald, son of Eric Stagbrellir;
    fared to Norway;
    lived near Loch Naver;
    sole male representative of Erlend Thorfinnson;
    not known what became of him.

  Ragnvald Gudrodson, the viking;
    his descent;
    his title to earldom;
    invaded Caithness.

  Ragnvald Kolson, St., earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    sold odal lands back to bonder, to raise money for St. Magnus'
    letter from David I;
    re-named after Ragnvald Brusi's son;
    estates in Caith. and Sutherland;
    personal description;
    earldom grant confirmed by king Harald;
    sought aid of Frakark to win earldom;
    defeated by earl Paul in a sea fight;
    earl Paul seized his fleet in Shetland;
    escaped to Norway;
    returned to Westray;
    assisted Sweyn against Frakark;
    welcomed Sweyn on his return from Frakark's burning;
    reconciled Sweyn and Thorbiorn;
    besieged Sweyn in Lambaborg;
    reconciled to Sweyn;
    visited king Ingi in Norway;
    his eastern pilgrimage;
    description of route, etc.;
    visited queen Ermengerde at Bilbao;
    visited Jordan, Jerusalem, Constantinople, etc.;
    returned to Turfness;
    in Shetland;
    in Sutherland at his daughter's wedding;
    reconciled to earl Harold at Thurso;
    reconciled earl Harold and Sweyn;
    annual deer-hunt in Caith.;
    slain by Thorbiorn;
    buried in St. Magnus' cathedral;
    his only child;
    had lands in Caith.,
    and managed earldom;
    never earl of Caith.;
    succeeded through a female;
    his mother and dau.;
    his half of Caith. earldom conferred on his grandson,
      Harald Ungi;
    his lands in Orkney claimed by Snaekoll;
    who was representative of his line;
    his share of Caith. earldom inherited by Johanna;
    his poetry.

  Ragnvaldsvoe, South Ronaldsay.

  Rautharbiorg or Rattar Brough;
    sea fight.

  Raven-banner of Sigurd, jarl.

  Redcastle is Eddirdovyr.

  Red deer and reindeer in C. and S.

  Redesdale, lord of.

  Reeves' _Life of St. Columba_.

  Register House, Edinburgh;
    list of Oliphant charters.

  Reindeer, or elk;
    horns found in Sutherland.

  Ri-Crois, at Embo.

  Rinansey, Rinarsey (Ninian's Island), now North Ronaldsay.

  Rinar's Hill.

  Robert, legendary second earl of Sutherland.


  Roger, bishop of St. Andrews.

  Roland of Galloway.

  Roland's Geo, Papa Stronsay.

  Romans in Britain;
    Caledonians not conquered.

  Ronaldsay, North;
    Darratha-Liod recited.


    northern part of Airergaithel;
    Pictish clergy;
    subdued by Thorfinn;
    bishopric founded;
    claimed by Henry, son of earl Harold and Afreka;
    Malcolm MacHeth cr. earl;
    Pictish province;
    bishopric refused by Andrew Freskyn;
    king William's expedition;
    earl Harold Maddadson's expedition;
    king William's expedition against thanes of Ross;
    Norse place-names;
    Macbeth's property.

  Ross, earl of;
    Ferchar Mac-in-Tagart;
    granted land to Walter de Moravia on his daughter's marriage;
    lay abbot of Applecross;
    knighted for a victory in Galloway;
    cr. earl of Ross in 1226;
    second earl, William MacFerchar, harried Hebrides.

  Ross, Euphemia of;
    m. Walter de Moravia.

  Rossal (Rossewal).

  Sæmund, of Iceland\.

  Saga-Book of the Viking Society.

  Saga-time, Ruins of.

    writer's historical accuracy;
    Norse crossed with Gaelic blood produced the Saga.

  Sandvik, Deerness.

  Saxon nobility and Scotland;
    St. Margaret.

  Scandinavian Britain, by (W.G. Collingwood).

  Scapa Flow.

    of Orkney.

  Scilly Isles.

  Scir-Illigh, old name of Kildonan parish.

  Scon, Lib. Eccles. de.




  Scotland, Annals of, (Lord Hailes).

  Scotland, Annals of the Reigns of Malcolm and William, Kings of,

  Scotland, Bain's Calendar of Documents relating to;
    Freskin signatory of National Bond.

  Scotland, Early Christian Monuments of, (J. Romilly Allen).

  Scotland, Early Chronicles relating to, (Sir Herbert Maxwell).

  Scotland, Early Kings of, (Robertson's);
    on earls of Angus.

  Scotland, History of, (Hume Brown).

  Scotland in Early Christian Times, (Joseph Anderson).

  Scotland in Pagan Times, (Joseph Anderson).

  Scotland, Prehistoric, (Munro).

  Scotland, Register of the Great Seal of.

  Scotland, S.A., Proceedings.


  Scots Peerage, The, (Sir J.B. Paul);
    MacWilliam, earl of C.

  Scott, A.B.;
    The Pictish Nation and Church.

  Scottish Annals from English Chroniclers, (A.O. Anderson).

  Scottish Charters, Early, (Lawrie).

  Scottish Historical Review.

  Scottish Kings, (Sir A.H. Dunbar).


    Days of Deerstalking.


  Shenachu, or Carn Shuin.

  Shaw's Moray.


  Shetland, Antiquities of, (Gilbert Goudie).

    Viking, British, Pictish, Roman;
    Pictish  coracles.

    Sigurd's Howe.


  Sigtrigg Silkbeard, king of Dublin.

  Sigurd Eysteinson, earl, conquered C. and S.;

  Sigurd Hlodverson, jarl;
    his conversion;
    in Darrath-Liod;
    his wife, dau. of Malcolm II.

  Sigurd Magnuson;
    prince of Orkney.

  Sigurd Marti.

  Sigurd Slembi-diakn.

  Sigurd's Howe, Cyderhall.

  Skaill, Norse skali.

  Skali, Norse farm-house.

  Skardi, a "gap" in place-names.

  Skelbo, (Skail-bo).

  Skelpick, deriv.

  Skene, W.F.;
    _Chronicle of the Picts and Scots_, q.v. _Highlanders of_
    _Scotland_, q.v. _Celtic Scotland_, q.v.

  Skidamyre (Skitten in Watten) C.

  Skotlands-fiorthr, or Minch.

  Skuli, duke.

  Skuli Thorfinnson, cr. earl.

  Snaekolf, son of Moldan.

  Snaekoll Gunni's son;
    sole male representative of Erlend and Moddan lines, claimed earl
      Ragnvald's lands from earl John;
    heir of Erlend lands in Caith.;
    killed earl John;
    return to Caith.;
    father of Johanna of Strathnaver;
    deriv. of name.

  Somarled Sigurdson, earl of Orkney and Caith.

  Somarled the Freeman;
    slain in the Isles by Sweyn Asleifarson.

  Somarled of Argyll, in rebellion.

  Sorlinc, or Surclin, castle of;
    in William the Wanderer, at Helmsdale, Scir-Illigh.

  Southern Isles.

  Spalding Club.

  Spittal of St. Magnus.

  Spynie, near Elgin;

  Standing Stane, Duffus.

  Stenhouse, Watten.

  Stefansson, Jon.

  Store Point.

  Strabrock, now Uphall and Broxburn.



  Stratherne, earls of;
    Fereteth, in rebellion;
    Malise, m. Matilda dau. of Gibbon;
    see also Malise II.

  Strathmore, in Halkirk.

    lady Johanna of;
    grant of lands for Elgin cathedral;
    Johanna's estate.

  Strathnaver valley.

    Moddan lands;
    Freskin of Duffus, in.


  String, The;

  Sturlunga Saga, Prolegomena by Vigfusson.

  Sudreys (see also Hebrides and Southern Isles).

  Sutherland (Sudrland);
    part of ancient Pictish province of Cait, q.v.;
    its boundaries;
    outwardly much the same now as in Pictish times;
    deer abounded;
    Pictish clergy driven from coasts by Norse;
    subdued by Thorfinn;
    Norse earls;
    seized by earl Hakon;
    Liot Nidingr;
    much owned by Moddan family;
    Norse steadily lost hold of;
    Celts kept their land;
    Norse driven outwards and eastward;
    family of Freskyn de Moravia;
    Norse occupied fertile parts;
    freed from Norse influence in 1266;
    inventory of ancient monuments;
    writing began in 12th cent.;
    Orkneyinga Saga only record before 12th cent.;
    earlier notices;
    land and people at arrival of Norsemen, all owned by Hugo Freskyn;
    earl Harald Slettmali seated in;
    seldom visited by earl Paul;
    Frakark burnt alive;
    Strath Helmsdale;
    Sweyn's raid;
    earl Ragnvald at his daughter's wedding;
    children of Eric Stagbrellir;
    William de Sutherlandia;
    Mackay settlement;
    Innes family;
    part of old earldom of Caithness;
    granted to Hugo Freskyn;
    excluded from grant of half of earldom of Caithness to Harald Ungi;
    subdued by king William;
    services of Freskyn family;
    lordship of Sutherland;
    erected into an earldom after 10th Oct. 1237;
    escaped attack by king Hakon;
    Norse adopted Gaelic language;
    Norse place-names;
    part settled by Mackays;
    Freskyns introduced into;
    inhabitants of Gael-Norse blend;
    no thanes of Moravia line in;
    horns of reindeer or elk found;
    see also Orkney and Caithness.

  Sutherland, earls of;
    fictitious earls, Alane, Walter and Robert;
    Freskyn de Moravia ancestor of;
    William Freskyn, first earl;
    William (1275), litigation with bishop;
    case of Elizabeth, claimant of earldom.
    See also Freskyn.

  Sutherland, Genealogie of the Earles of, (Sir R. Gordon);
    on Alane, thane of S.;
    treated as fiction;
    boundaries of Sutherland.

  Sutherland Book;
    William MacFrisgyn omitted;
    on Johanna of Strathnaver;

  Sutherland and the Reay Country, (A. Gunn).

  Sutherland, Inventory of the Monuments in.

    duke of.

  Sverrir, king of Norway.

  Sverri's Saga.

  Swart Ironhead.

  Swart Kell, or Cathal Dhu.

  Swelchie (whirl-pool) near Stroma.

    ancestor of Gunn family;
    his son, Andres;
    his father, Olaf, burned at Ducansby, his mother, Asleif;
    his character;
    burned Frakark;
    his brother, Gunni;
    quarrels with earl Harold;
    annual viking cruises and life described;
    death at Dublin.

  Sweyn Breast-rope.



  Templar church of Orphir.

    none of Moravia line in Sutherland.

  Thing (parliament), in Caithness.

  Thora, queen of Norway.

  Thora, mother of earl St. Magnus.

  Thorbiorn Klerk, grandson of Frakark;
    tutor to earl Harold Maddadson;
    m. Ingirid, sister of Sweyn;
    his character;
    burned Waltheof;
    divorces Sweyn's sister;
    instigated quarrel between earls in Thurso;
    viking raid;
    ambushed earl Ragnvald;
    burnt alive;
    no direct heirs.

  Thorbjorn in Burrafirth, Shetland.

  Thorfinn, son of Harold Maddadson;
    in rebellion against Scotland;
    promised as hostage to king William.

  Thorfinn, a farmer, C.

  Thorfinn Sigurdson, earl of Orkney and Caith.;
    cr. earl of Caith. and Sutherland;
    ancestor of all subsequent Norse earls;
    established at Duncansby;
    claimed Orkney;
    war with Duncan I;
    at Deerness;
    conquests in Fife;
    Ragnvald Brusi-son co-earl;
    raids on England;
    his wife, Ingibjorg;
    "king of Catanesse,";
    claimed two-thirds of Orkney;
    sole earl;
    visited Rome;
    his widow m. king Malcolm Canmore;
    earl Erlend his grandson's grandson.

  Thorfinn Torf-Einarson Hausa-kliufr (skull-cleaver), earl, m. Grelaud.


  Thorgisl, Saga of.

  Thorir Rognvaldson.

  Thorir Treskegg.

  Thorkel Amundson, or Fostri;
    at Sandvik, Deerness, slew Einar;
    and Moddan;
    and Ragnvald Brusi-son.

  Thorkel, son of Cathal Dhu of C.

  Thorleif, Frakark's sister.

  Thorolf, bishop of Orkney.

    valley of Thurso river.

  Thorstan the White.

  Thorstein the Red, seized C. and S.;
    father of Groa, who m. Duncan, maormor of Cat.

  Thorstein, son of Hall O' Side.

    the river;
    earl Moddan killed at;
    Ottar, jarl in;
    earl Harold Maddadson seized;
    earls Ragnvald and Harold reconciled;
    St. Peter's church;
    earls' residence.

  Tighernac, The Annals of.

  Torfaeus, _Orcades_, q.v., for transl. see Pope, Alex.

  Torf-Einar Ragnvaldson, earl;
    slew Halfdan Halegg.

  Turfness (probably Burghead), Moray;
    Ragnvald Kali went to;
    held by Norse.




  Ulf the Bad.

  Ulfreksfirth (Larne Bay).


  Undal, Peter Clauson.

  Unes, or Little Ferry.

  Uphall, History and  Antiquities of, (J. Primrose).


  Valthiof, brother of Sweyn.

  Varangian Guard.

  Vallich, Loch, or Bealach.

    settlers as well as raiders;
    settlements place-names, including the;
    intermarriage, influence;
    held and named most of coasts and valleys of Cat and Ross;
    survival of place and personal names;
    Valhalla influence;

  Viking Age, The, (Du Chaillu).

  Viking expeditions.

  Viking Society for Northern Research. Publications:
    _Saga-Rook_ (Proceedings), The Round Church and Earl's Bu of Orphir;
    _Year-Book_, 150 (ns. 24, 28);
    _Old-Lore Miscell. of O.S.C. and S._, q.v.;
    _Orkney and Shetland Records_, q.v.;
    _Caithness and Sutherland Records_, q.v.;
    _Ruins of Saga-Time_, q.v.


  Walter de Baltroddi, bishop.

  Waltheof, earl.

  Wardships, granted by Crown.

  Wemund (monk).

  Wergeld, for Halfdan;
    Olaf Hrolfson.

    earl Harald Ungi defeated;
    earls' residence.


  Will. Newburgh Chron.

  William the Lion;
    charter of Strabrock;
    confirmed charter in Sutherland;
    service of Wm. Freskyn;
    grant to Gaufrid Blundus;
    first conquest of Caithness, Sutherland granted to Hugo Freskyn;
    with army in Ross;
    war against Donald Ban MacWilliam;
    defeated Thorfinn, Harold's son;
    subdued Sutherland and Caithness;
    conferred half of earldom of C. on Harald Ungi;
    conferred it on Ragnvald Gudrodson;
    came to terms with Harald;
    war with thanes of Ross;
    the dau. of John as hostage;
    treaty with John, Caithness;

  William, son of Gillebride, uncle of Magnus II.

  William FitzDuncan, son of Duncan II.

  William the Old, bishop of Orkney;
    at Egilsay;
    went to the east.

  William the Wanderer, transl. W.G. Collingwood; Thorfinn, "king of

  Wolves, in Cat.

    _The Prehistory of the North_.

  Wrath, Cape.

  Wyntoun's Chronicle.

  Wyre, Vigr, now called Veira;
    Cobbie Row's Castle.

  Yell Sound.

  Yorkshire ridings, trithings.


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