This page brought to you by Clan Cameron Online

The Battle of


Cameron of Lochiel's Own Website

John Og-Mac-Ian of Ardnamurchan, who had been betrothed to one of Allan Cameron, XVI Captain and Chief of Clan Cameron's daughters, was basely murdered by his own uncle, while providing himself with a suitable equipage for the wedding, which, according to the custom of the times, was to have been celebrated with great magnificence.  The murderer, commonly known as Mac Mhic Eoin, was a man of gigantic size and strength.  He possessed the district of Suinart on lease from his nephew, Mac Ian, whom he had assassinated.  It is said that he committed this act not in resentment of any injury done to him, but with the view of succeeding him in estate and command of the clan as the next heir.  For Mac Ian, Allan Cameron of Lochiel had the highest esteem.  No sooner than Lochiel heard of his death than he determined to avenge it.

The murderer, in dread of Allan's resentment, fled with all his goods and cattle to the island of Mull, placing himself under the protection of Lauchlan Mor Maclean of Duart, a near relation on his mother's side.  Lochiel pursued him with approximately sixty men and captured his goods, but notwithstanding the haste he had made Mac Mhic Eoin managed to escape across the Sound of Mull.  Maclean, seeing all that passed, from the opposite shore, dispatched his eldest son Hector with 220 men, with Mac Mhic Eoin at their head, to recover the spoil.

Lochiel, now finding himself obligated to fight, posted his men in an advantageous position, which largely made up for his deficiency in numbers.  Mac Mhic Eoin, armed cap-a-pie, advanced with an air which indicated the highest contempt for his enemy.  Feeling warm under the weight of his armor, he raised his helmet to admit fresh air.  One of Lochiel's archers at once observed this, and, taking aim, pierced him in the forehead with an arrow, mortally wounding him.  As he lay dying he requested Lochiel to receive his sword, being unwilling to yield it to one of inferior station.  Two renditions as to what occurred next are recorded.  Either he took a great swipe at Lochiel, perishing soon after, or he used the remainder of his strength to plunge the sword into the opposite bank, at a place called Leac-nan-Saighid or "The Ledge of Arrows.".

With the death of Mac-Mhic-Eoin his followers were easily dispirited and were either killed or taken prisoner.  Among the prisoners was Hector Maclean and twenty of his party, but Lochiel released them immediately without any ransom.  Lachlan Mor himself crossed the Sound of Mull during the action and pursued Lochiel with a much greater force than his own, but the Camerons managed to escape without much loss.