Clan Lachlan Association of
& Clan MacLachlan Society
Origins of the Clan.
The name MacLachlan means Son of Lachlan and in
Gaelic, Son of the Northlands which in those days referred to Norway.
Prior to the 18th century, the normal spelling was MacLochlainn.
The Irish Era.
This is a mixture of fact and legend; ancient annals
claim that the MacLochlainns descend from the Milesian tribe from the
northern part of the Iberian Peninsula; they were one of the Celtic
tribes to settle in what is now Ireland and became known there as the
The MacLochlainns were a branch of the Northern Ui Neill.
The Irish-Scottish Era.
In the 6th century warriors from Ireland founded the
Ulster -Scottish kingdom of Dalriada and called that part of the West
Coast of Scotland, Earra Gael (Argyll), "the land of the Gael."Then in
563, St. Columba established himself on Iona. It is reputed that
MacLochlainns have been in Argyll since that time.
About 1038, Anrothan O'Neill, resigned as King of
Aileach in favor of his brother and moved to Kintyre where he married a
princess of a local king; she brought as a dowry the lands of Cowal
which is the peninsula lying between Loch Fyne, the Firth of Clyde and
Loch Long, and also the lands of Knapdale which lies on the western
side of Loch Fyne. From old Gaelic manuscripts, the family Maclachlan
of Maclachlan can claim descent from Anrothan and the Kings of Aileach
and High Kings of Ireland.
The MacLochlains of Donegal, Kings of Aileach, and
the O'Neills, Lords of Tyrone, both descended from the legendary High
King Niall Mor bitterly contested for supremacy in the north of
Ireland, from the eleventh to the thirteenth centuries. In 1241 Brian
O'Neill, backed by the Norman Earl of Ulster and by the O'Donnells
triumphed in battle and slaughtered King Domnhall MacLochlainn with ten
of his immediate family, his chieftains and most of the adult
MacLochlainn males; the MacLochlainns, for centuries Kings of Aileach
and High Kings of Ireland, never again challenged their kinsmen the
O'Neills for supremacy.
The Scottish Era.
In 1249 only seven years after the death of King
Domnhall, the MacLochlainns of Cowal began to be recognized as a clan
under their chief Lochlainn Mor( Lachlan the Powerful). The Maclachlan
of Maclachlan family is directly descended from this Lochlainn Mor.
There are few recorded facts in the highlands at
this time but there is an important charter dated 1238 in which
Lochlainn's father Gillapatrick is a witness to the granting of lands
to Paisley Abbey; Gillapatrick is shown in Gaelic manuscripts as being
a direct descendant of Anrothan O'Neill.
For over 700 years since the 13th century, the Clan
Lachlan has been a Scottish Highland clan and has held the lands of
Strathlachlan on Loch Fyne, Argyll. The present Chief of the Clan is
Euan Maclachlan of Maclachlan, 25th of that ilk, Castle Lachlan,
There is more on "The heritage and beginning of the Clan" and "the history of the Chiefs" in the "Lachlan Library "
, the Clan MacLachlan Society & the Lachlan Trust of Canada: Reg.