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The Highlanders of Scotland
Part II - Conclusion


HAVING now concluded the history of the Highland clans according to the system established in the former part of the Work, it may be proper here to state in a few words the simple but highly important conclusion to which these researches have brought us.

      First. the Gaelic race at present occupying the Highlands have existed as a distinct and peculiar people, inhabiting the same districts which they now occupy, from the earliest period to which the records of history reach.

      Secondly. Previous to the thirteenth century, that Gaelic nation was divided into a few great tribes, which exactly correspond with the ancient earldoms of that part of Scotland. the hereditary chiefs of these tribes were termed Maormors a title which the influence of Saxon manners changed to that of earl.

      Thirdly. From these few tribes all the Highlanders are descended, and to one or other of them each of the Highland clans can be traced.

      Upon this system, therefore, has every part of the present Work been brought to bear. Each of the clans has been viewed rather as forming a part of one great whole than as a separate family detached from all others, and it has throughout been deemed of more importance to establish with precision the place of each clan in this great system, than to enter into any detail of their history. Of the importance of the result to which all these researches have led, it is impossible for a moment to doubt; and while a view has been given of the history of each detached portion, everything has been brought to contribute, in some degree, to the establishment of a great truth as new as it is important.

      This second portion would have extended to far greater length, and more minute detail of family history, had the Author not felt the necessity of compressing his plan within the narrow limits of an essay, which he was desirous should exhibit, in a distinct and complete form, the theory of Scottish history, which his researches have led him to adopt, and which he now submits with deference to the judgment of the public.

      The result of the system will be found, at one view, in the following table of the descent of the Highland clans.


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