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The Five Arrows

Cameron of Lochiel's Own Website

Central to the Clan Cameron badge are the five arrows, "united" with one another with a gules ribbon or band. The meaning of the five arrows, which is not found in any contemporary publications, is offered here in the words of Colonel Sir Donald H. Cameron of Lochiel, K.T., the XXVI Chief of Clan Cameron (1910-2004.)


"This crest goes back to pre-1745 as it is engraved on the Gentle Lochiel's pistol, which I have at Achnacarry, and also on a silver snuffbox that belonged to him. As regards the meaning of the five arrows, it definitely refers to the five branches of the clan, and I remember my father at a pre-war clan gathering mentioning this and stating which were the five branches concerned but, unfortunately, I have no record of what he actually said. I have, however, looked up my history again and there are only five branches of any significance which were in existence before 1745, so I am sure these are the ones relating to the five arrows. They are as follows:

1) MacMartins or Camerons of Letterfinlay
2) Camerons of Glen Nevis
3) Camerons of Callart and Lundavra
4) Camerons of Erracht
5) Camerons of Clunes"