Seminar – Dr Aonghas MacCoinnich – ‘”Na trì làmh bu phailte”. Gille-Chaluim Garbh of Raasay and a Sixteenth-Century Gaelic Poem from the Fernaig Manuscript’

The SSNS Seminar Series returns on 22 September with a talk by Dr Aonghas MacCoinnich (University of Glasgow), titled ‘”Na trì làmh bu phailte”. Gille-Chaluim Garbh of Raasay and a Sixteenth-Century Gaelic Poem from the Fernaig Manuscript’.

This is a free, ticketed event; please register below.


James VI famously proclaimed that there were two kinds of Highlander: those who has some show of civility on the one hand and could be rehabilitated, and those who were all-utterly barbarous and beyond redemption on the other. For the latter, they were to be rooted out and ‘civilised’ people planted in their stead. This, indeed, was the experience of Sìol Torcaill, or the MacLeods of Lewis between 1598-1609. Yet one of the junior branches of Sìol Torcaill, the MacLeods of Raasay, managed to negotiate a path through this challenging period. This talk will consider Gille-Chaluim Garbh MacLeod of Raasay’s career against a background of clan-feud, plantation, and the pacification of the north-west Gàidhealtachd in the early seventeenth century. Most of the surviving contemporary source material was generated for or by hostile external parties. One Gaelic poem composed by the Raasay chief survives, however, which provides us with a rather different perspective on the clan.


Dr Aonghas MacCoinnich is a lecturer in Celtic History at the University of Glasgow. He has an interest in the history and culture of Gaelic Scotland, tending to focus on the 1400–1750 period. Publications include the article ‘Maritime dimensions to Scotland’s Highland Problem, 1540–1630’ (2019), a monograph, Plantation and Civility in the North Atlantic World: The Case of the Northern Hebrides, c.1570–1639 (2015), and most recently, an article on Gaelic in Galloway and the south-west, 1400–1805 (2022).

Registration below. Details for the Zoom meeting will be emailed in advance of the seminar.

Fernaig Manuscript of Gaelic verse, late seventeenth century (MS Gen 85), University of Glasgow Special Collections.


Thursday 22 Sep 2022


Times are in BST
7:00 pm




Scottish Society for Northern Studies
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