Believed to descend from an early sixth century son of Fergus MacErc, King of Ulster, who made the sea crossing from Ireland to Scotland’s west coast, those who would come to bear the Maclaurin, or Maclaren, name thrived for centuries in Balquhidder and Loch Earn in West Perthshire.
Followers of the powerful Earls of Strathearn, they were frequently to be found with battle-axe and sword in hand in major battles that included Bannockburn in 1314 while, in 1513, they were among the Scots killed at the disastrous battle of Flodden.
Described in government warrants as being ‘among the most dangerous of West Highland clans’, they fought for the Jacobite cause under the banners of the Stewarts of Appin and the Murrays of Athole at the battle of Culloden in 1746.
In more peaceful times, Charles MacLaren was responsible for establishing The Scotsman newspaper in 1817.
Presented here is the vibrant tale of the Maclarens.