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The poverty of evidence, so often a handicap, is for him an opportunity: it makes it possible to take the reader into his condence as he seeks to weigh up the value of each witness. In evaluating his sources, he is willing to see, and to encourage his reader to see, the merits of rival interpretations; and at the same time he has the capacity to perceive how, if one only looked at some piece of evidence in a new way, the whole historical landscape would change, often for the better. Modern Scotland embraces not just what, from c. In Woolfs hands, this transforms what might otherwise have been the tyranny of the modern political map into an opportunity to rise above the history of one nation. In this way he exploits the peculiar interest of what would eventually become Scotland: the interplay between the ve peoples of North Britain. This is particularly true of Britain, since the relationship between North Britain and the new West Saxon kingdom of the English forms another important thread in the narrative. The discussion of the Scandinavian background to the Viking presence in North Britain is also exceedingly helpful.
However, I couldn't help but get the impression from Morrigan's Cross, the first book in her Circle trilogy, that Nora Roberts is a romance writer trying to attract fantasy readers. Not so. Vampires occasionally and suddenly appear out of nowhere, scrap a bit, and retreat. But most of the plot of Morrigan's Cross is focused on the relationship between Hoyt and Glenna who suddenly decide that, after knowing each other for about two weeks, they "complete" each other and must be married.
They spend most of their time making the lights surge while they're in bed, and arguing a lot about how Hoyt wants Glenna to stay safe in the house. Occasionally they work on trying to figure out how to fight vampires. There were some other disappointing plot elements.
For example, Hoyt has traveled from the 12th century to the 21st and keeps brooding about what's going to happen to him and his family and if he'll succeed in his task to vanquish the vampires. When Constantn son of Fergus died in , after a long reign, he was entitled by the Annals of Ulster king of Fortriu; and the same title was given to his brother engus in his obit in Even more importantly, the devastating defeat inicted by the Vikings in was specically at the expense of the men of Fortriu; and their leaders killed in the battle included someone with a Gaelic name, ed mac Boantai who was included among the kings of Alba in the Synchronisms of Irish Kings.
Charles-Edwards apparently placed to mark the boundary of land attached to the royal palace of Forteviot in Strathearn. His power thus exemplied, in the late eighth and early ninth centuries what Woolf has called the Verturian hegemony.
As Woolf notes, the inscription on the Dupplin Cross uses a form of Gaelic orthography, but fails to give the kings father the proper Gaelic genitive: it was not composed by a Gaelic speaker even though it betrays strong Gaelic inuence. There is an argument, therefore, for seeing the change from Pictland to Alba as being from a Verturian hegemony to one based to the south of the Mounth.
It was also a shift from a Pictish dynasty strongly inuenced by Gaelic culture to one that claimed a Gaelic origin in Kintyre, the former homeland of Cenl nGabrin. If the rgrad, the royals, claimed an origin in Kintyre, others did likewise. Woolf pp. What is critical here is not the genetic truth of these claims but their signicance in the tenth and eleventh centuries.
What they assert is that the elite in several provinces of Alba south of the Mounth descended 40 Katherine Forsyth, The inscription on the Dupplin Cross, in From the Isles of the North. Early Medieval Art in Ireland and Britain, ed.
Cormac Bourke Belfast, , Robert Atkinson Dublin, , c b 3. Brouns argument, Alba: Pictish homeland or Irish offshoot?
Chronicum Scotorum, ed. Hennessy London, , s. Whitley Stokes repr. Padraig Riain Dublin, , One reason why Woolf prefers to situate the branch of Clann Chineda descended from ed mac Cineda Clann eda in Moray was that, by doing so, he makes the problem of Moray easier. As Woolf has shown, the pedigree these Irish collections supply leaps with utter disregard of chronology from the eleventh century to two distinct lines of descent ending in the rst half of the eighth century.
At the beginning of the eleventh century, as we have seen, major provincial families in Alba south of the Mounth were claiming descent from branches of Dl Riata. The new rulers of Moray did likewise, choosing the kindred that had held the kingship of Dl Riata for much of the early eighth century, before, in , engus mac Forgusso submerged Dl Riata in his northern imperium.
Woolf offers evidence that relations between the kindred of Constantine mac Cineda and Moray were often hostile, whereas there is no such evidence for the kindred of ed.
Yet, negative evidence counts for little: Clann Chustantn may have been hostile to the men of Moray, but that does not show that Clann eda was based there. There is also evidence for Clann edas interest in the lands south of the Mounth: not only does Custantn mac eda appear to have become a monk at St Andrews, but his son, Ildulb, and his grandson, Culn, may have been buried there.
That would then be evidence for Clann edas presence south of the Mounth. Another response would be to allow that there may be some connection between Cenl Loairn and the eleventh-century rulers of 43 A fuller discussion is in Woolf, The Moray Question and the kingship of Alba, The problem was already seen by Chadwick, Early Scotland, Benjamin T. Hudson Westport, CT, , 87 stanza , 88 stanzas , Broun, Dunkeld and the origin of Scottish identity, Charles-Edwards Moray, even though the pedigree only succeeds in revealing that the precise genealogical link was unknown.
The portion of Dl Riata most immediately open to attack and domination from Fortriu through the Great Glen was the north, namely Lorne, the home territory of Cenl Loairn. Some annal entries help to conrm the accuracy of Walahfrid Strabos placing of Iona in Pictland; indeed, they suggest that the Dl Riatan territories incorporated into Pictland may even have stretched as far as Kintyre, the homeland of Cenl nGabrin.
According to the Annals of Ulster, the battle between Conall mac Taidg and Constantn in was inter Pictos, between two groups of Picts. Conall would be killed in Kintyre in , while Constantn would die as king of Fortriu in ; yet Conall is probably one of the two Conalls recorded in the Synchronisms of Irish Kings.
Yet Conall may have been a Pict who rst took refuge, and later gained power, in Kintyre. Indeed, he may be the Canaul lius Tang of one version of the Pictish regnal list, so that he would rst have ruled in Pictland and later in Dl Riata. When, in , the Vikings slew the leading men of Fortriu in battle, the three named in the Annals of Ulster were ugann son of engus, Bran son of engus, and ed son of Boantae. For a suggestion as to who might have been Walahfrid Strabos informant, see Clancy, Diarmait sapientissimus: the career of Diarmait, dalta Daigre, abbot of Iona, Peritia , ; WattenbachLevison, Deutschlands Geschichtsquellen im Mittelalter: Vorzeit und Karolinger, rev.
Lebor Bretnach, ed. Van Hamel, 86, The Poppleton version, ibid. Fortriu, by that period, was, through its own expansion, a mixed kingdom, both Pictish and Gaelic.
With this background in the second half of the eighth century and the rst half of the ninth, it is then hardly surprising that Cined and his sons should have been at once a Gaelic dynasty from Kintyre and kings of the Picts. Even earlier there had been, as Chadwick and others have noted, Gaelic settlement in Pictland.
It also knows, however, of a branch of the U Choirpri in Pictland. This evidence is especially signicant because it is early, can be ascribed to a particular monastery, and has no interest in advancing the claims of the dynasty in question indeed, quite the reverse. The associations between Gaelic settlement in Pictland and West Munster thus go back before engus mac Forggusso, who was later said to have belonged to the oganacht Maige Gerginn, a branch of the Munster oganachta related to oganacht Locha Lin alias U Choirpri Lchra but settled in eastern Pictland long before the days of Cined mac Alpn.
The bewildering relationship between Cumbria and Galloway in the eleventh and twelfth centuries is an extreme case.
On the one hand there is the division of dioceses: a large twelfth-century diocese of Glasgow that encompassed a land of several nations and languages alongside a smaller diocese of Whithorn. On the other hand, David I who had been prince of Cumbria made a grant, addressed to both Kings and Kingship, , ; Thurneysen, Synchronismen, Early Scotland, Kuno Meyer, in O. Bergin et al. For the probability that Bruide d. For the signicance of denying the title oganacht, see Charles-Edwards, Early Christian Ireland, Charles-Edwards Gawenses and Englishmen and Scots, giving to God and to the church of St Kentigern of Glasgow all the tithe of my cin, in cattle and pigs, from Strathgriff and Cunningham, and from Kyle and from Carrick, each year except when I myself shall come there making my circuit and eating my cin there.
Signicant here is the address to the Gawenses, presumably for Galwenses Galwegians: it is probably put rst because the lands in question were considered to be within Galloway; yet almost all this territory belonged to the diocese of Glasgow. Others were multilingual and allowed people of different ethnic afliation to gain entry into the ruling elite.
Pictland in the eighth and ninth centuries appears to have been like Galloway and Cumbria in the twelfth, but Alba from the tenth century was more like, say, Northumbria in the eighth.
Without such an assumption that Gaelic became a prerequisite for entry into the elite of Alba it is not easy to explain why Pictish should have died. Woolf has an admittedly speculative account of linguistic relationships in North Britain pp. It was noticed by Heinrich Wagner among others that some features of modern Scots Gaelic resemble Welsh rather than Irish: an example would be the use of the synthetic present tense as a future.
This Albanian language is held to have coexisted with purer forms of Gaelic. Albanian was spoken by the mass of the population in Eastern Scotland but the purer Gaelic was the language of cultural prestige and was also reinforced from the west and from Ireland.
A fundamental difculty here is to know whether what is envisaged is a language hitherto unknown to history, Albanian in the sense of the language most widely spoken in Alba in the tenth century and surviving into the twelfth, a fusion of two earlier languages, or simply an impure form of Gaelic, most of whose impurities are to be ascribed to Pictish inuence.
With the second one need not, in general, quarrel; indeed, as is well known, Old Irish was a standard language behind which may lie concealed local dialects. Across its full geographical range, Irish is likely to have had, at various dates, Charters of David I, ed. Barrow Woodbridge, , no. Talk of an Albanian language distinct from Gaelic, therefore, goes far beyond the evidence.
The change from a North Britain beyond Forth and Loch Lomond divided between a Pictish east and north and a Gaelic west to a Gaelic Alba is most unlikely to have been accomplished in one go. Six stages may be distinguished: 1 Before the triumph of the Pictish king, Unust or engus, over Dl Riata in there was already elite Gaelic settlement within Pictland, as indicated by the example of the sons of Der Ilei,59 by epigraphic evidence, and by the mention, c.
For geographical reasons as well as the power of Fortriu, the latter was the Pictish kingdom of which Dl Riata was normally a part. This situation probably continued, though perhaps with gaps, until the Viking defeat of Fortriu in Crucially, the elite of Fortriu accommodated Gaelic alongside Pictish. On the evidence of the Pictish regnal lists, the change from Bred to Cined mac Alpn also marked a change from Pictish to Gaelic in the recording of the names of the kings who ruled the Picts.
It is likely that the main base of Clann Chineda was south of the Mounth, not in Fortriu. Cineds accession was thus much more signicant than recent scholarship has claimed. Charles-Edwards In all three cases the movement was away from Pictland or Picts; the evidence of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle suggests that Alba was, in its elite, predominantly Scottish, namely Gaelic.
To judge by 6 this suggests that Gaelic had become an entrance requirement for inclusion in the elite. But by this stage the elite was again being recruited both from those who did not speak Gaelic and from those who did.
The relationship of the kingdom to ethnicity now more closely resembled that of Pictland in the eighth and early ninth centuries, or Cumbria in the tenth and eleventh, than it did Alba from c.
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