With their name derived from the Gaelic forba, meaning a field or district and also found in the landscape in the form of the Braes of Forbes, Clan Forbes thrived for centuries throughout western Aberdeenshire.
The distant ancestor of the clan was the warrior Oconachan, who reputedly killed a bear that had devoured nine maidens. The Braes of Forbes had been the bear’s main hunting ground, and Oconachan accordingly took this territory as his own.
Oconachan’s descendants prospered as they acquired high honours and distinction.
John de Forbes fought at the side of the warrior King Robert the Bruce during the Wars of Independence while, during the time of the 1745 Jacobite Rising, Duncan Forbes of Culloden was the Hanoverian government’s main representative in Scotland and was later appointed Lord President of the Court of Session.
Chronicled here are the stirring lives and times of proud bearers of the Forbes name.