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Sutherland and Caithness in Saga-Time or, The Jarls and The Freskyns   By:

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SUTHERLAND AND CAITHNESS IN SAGA TIME OR, THE JARLS AND THE FRESKYNS

BY JAMES GRAY, M.A. OXON.

EDINBURGH OLIVER & BOYD. 1922 STROMNESS: PRINTED BY W.R. RENDALL.

PREFACE.

Originally delivered as a Presidential Address to The Viking Society for Northern Research, the following pages, as amplified and revised, are published mainly with the object of interesting Sutherland and Caithness people in the early history of their native counties, and particularly in the three Sagas which bear upon it as well as on that of Orkney and Shetland at a time regarding which Scottish records almost wholly fail us.

When, however, these records are extant, use has been made of them together with later books upon them, of which a list follows, and to which references are given in the notes.

A special effort has been made to deal with the vexed question of the succession to the Caithness Earldom after Earl John's death in 1231, with the pedigree of the first known ancestors of the House of Sutherland, and with the mystery of the descent of Lady Johanna of Strathnaver.

Acknowledgments of assistance received are tendered to the writers of the books above referred to, but thanks are specially due to Mr. A.W. JOHNSTON, Founder and Past President of the Viking Society, for numerous hints, and for making the Index; to Mr. JON STEFANNSON for reading the manuscript; and to Mr. ALAN O. ANDERSON, whose knowledge of the English and Scottish Records of the period is as accurate as it is extensive, and who has made several valuable suggestions.

But for the opinions expressed no one save the writer is responsible, and, where records are scanty, much has necessarily been left to conjecture.

J.G.

53 MONTAGU SQUARE, LONDON, W., 1922.

TABLE OF CONTENTS.

LIST OF AUTHORITIES AND BOOKS REFERRED TO

CHAPTER I. INTRODUCTORY

A.D. 82 790 Scope of this Book Authorities Roman times and their result Post Roman days.

CHAPTER II. THE PICT AND THE NORTHMAN

Geography and description of Cat Brochs Picts Christianity Vikings Gall gaels Gaelic Land Settlement The rise of the Scots.

CHAPTER III. THE EARLY NORSE JARLS

790 1014 Constantine I and the Northmen Kenneth and the Union of the Picts and Scots Thorstein the Red and Aud Groa and Duncan of Duncansby The Vikings and Harald Harfagr Ragnvald of Maeri and Jarl Sigurd Cyderhall Torf Einar, Thorfinn Hausakliufr, Skuli and others War for the Moray seaboard Jarl Sigurd Hlodverson Christianity introduced in Orkney Swart Kell Earl Anlaf Story of Barth Sigurd Hlodverson, Clontarf "Darratha liod" Resumé.

CHAPTER IV. THORFINN, EARL AND JARL

1008 1064 King Malcolm's matrimonial alliances Victory of Carham Thorfinn Sigurdson, Earl of Caithness and Sutherland His attempts on Orkney Somarled, Brusi and Einar Thorkel Fostri slays Einar Moddan created Earl of Caithness and slain by Thorkel Battle of Torfness Death of Duncan Thorfinn and Macbeth Thorfinn and Ragnvald Brusison Marriage with Ingibjorg Battle of Rautharbiorg Thorfinn sole Jarl of Orkney and Shetland His travels, retirement, and death His chronology.

CHAPTER V. PAUL AND ERLEND, HAKON AND MAGNUS

1058 1123 Paul and Erlend, jarls Ingibjorg's marriage with Malcolm III Its objects Norman conquest of England King Magnus Barelegs Hakon and Magnus, jarls Harold Slettmali and Paul the Silent, jarls Ingibiorg and Margret Moddan in Dale Feudalism in Scotland The Catholic Church Alexander I and David I The three leading families in Caithness and Sutherland, of the Norse Jarls, Moddan, and Freskyn de Moravia The Mackays The Gunns.

CHAPTER VI. THE MODDAN FAMILY, JARLS HARALD AND PAUL AND RAGNVALD

1123 1158 Harald Slettmali and Paul the Silent Frakark and Helga Harald poisoned Frakark in Kildonan Plot against Jarl Paul The Moddan family Audhild Eric Stagbrellir Ragnvald's history and jarldom Battle of Tankerness Olvir Rosta and Sweyn Paul kidnapped Harold Maddadson Frakark's Burning Thorbiorn Klerk Ragnvald's cruise to the East Erlend Haraldson's grant of half Caithness Scramble for the earldom Ragnvald's daughter Ingirid's marriage to Eric Stagbrellir Fight at Thurso Erlend and Sweyn Erlend's death Ragnvald's murder His descendants... Continue reading book >>




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