McClintock / McClintic Prologue IV

Seat of the McClintock Family

McClintic Saga

The earliest seat of the McClintock family seems to have been on Loch Awe. Early records indicate they held estates, which included a manor home near Loch Awe, in present day Argyle County. A branch of the family also held territory directly west of Loch Lomond, in the parish of Old or West Kilpatrick that was known as the Lands of Luss. Th Luss territories were held by royal charter after the feudal system was established by the Earls of Lennox who took their surname of Luss from the name of their lands. The luss family had held this land by the 'Right of the Sword' long before recorded history, and after feudalism, by Royal Charter from King Alexander II, at the beginning of the 13th century as the Earls of Lennox. The title Earl was accorded to relatives of the King or to those who were heirs of former local Kings. It was the highest rank in early Scotland. There were only 13 earldoms in this land.

The McClintocks became SEPTS of the Clan 'Colquhoun' during the reign of King David Bruce (1329-1370). King David was the son of Robert Bruce. In the year 1368 Sir Robert Colquhoun (pronounced Cohoon) married the 'Fair Maid of Luss'. This fair maiden was the heiress and oldest daughter of Godfrey de Luss, Earl of Lennox and Chief of the ancient Luss family. She acquired the land that was her inheritance. It was an old Scots custom to call an heiress the Maid of her inheritance, thus the term 'Fair Maid of Luss'. Godfrey de Luss (her father) was the 6th descendant, in direct male line, of Maelduim of Lennox who had received the Luss Lands from Alsyn, the second Earl of Lennox who had received the original charter signed by King Alexander II. The Earls of Lennox had held this land for more than 700 years prior to 1368. They were considered a sacred family. They were the hereditary guardians of the Celtic priests and of the cozier of St. Kessog, the martyr who lived in Glen Luss or on Inchtavannach, the Monk's Island in Loch Lommond. It is possible they were also related to the saint himself, as was often the case with hereditary guardians of saintly relics in the old Celtic Church.

The name 'Luss' given to the lands, is derived from a word meaning the bounds of a sanctuary. King Robert Bruce confirmed by Royal Charter that all the ground within a 'girth' of three miles around the church of Luss (which still stands today) was a holy place of refuge.

The McClintocks most probably were related to the Luss family and had also lived on these lands for centuries. When the 'Fair Maid of Luss' married the Colquhoun Chief in 1368 her tenants became 'SEPTS' of the Clan Colquhoun. The Chief then became known as the 'Colquhoun of Luss'.

In Scotland, as elsewhere, feudalism was imposed by the Crown. The land was now held under contract with the king instead of by Tribal Custom. Even after the rise of the feudal system, many inter-clan battles were fought over land. Disputes over territorial boundaries continued to be settled by combat. Some large Clans were even powerful enough to defy the King's army. The feudal system was never completely enforced in the Scottish Highlands, as the terrain and weather made pure military enforcement impossible. The law of the sword was the only law recognized until the 18th century.

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