Who told Alexander Carmichael about the MacMhuirichs?

  • Donald Stewart (Speaker)

Activity: Academic talk or presentation typesInvited talk


An examination of folkloric material connected with the celebrated MacMhuirich kindred, poets successively to the late medieval Lords of the Isles, then to the MacDonalds of Clan Ranald, as preserved in the collection of Alexander Carmichael (1832-1912). The paper builds on the work of Barbara Hillers and Prof. William Gillies [William Gillies, 'Alexander Carmichael and Clann Mhuirich', Scottish Gaelic Studies, xx (2000), 1-66; Barbara Hillers, 'Poet or magician: Mac Mhuirich Mòr in oral tradition' in Joseph F. Nagy and Leslie Ellen Jones (eds), Heroic Poets and Poetic Heroes in Celtic Tradition: A Festschrift for Patrick K. Ford (Dublin, 2005), 141-57; and William Gillies, 'Alexander Carmichael and the folklore of the MacMhuirich poets' in Domhnall Uilleam Stiùbhart (ed.), The Life and Work of Alexander Carmichael (Port of Ness, 2008), 96-114], revealing the original field notebook sources for the edited items they discussed, and introducing some new, hitherto overlooked, sources for the family from the Island of South Uist.
PeriodJun 2011
Held atClan Currie Society, Edinburgh