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Clans and Families of Ireland and Scotland
X. The Vikings and Normans


Chisholms. The Bissets of Lessendrum are among the oldest families in Aberdeenshire.

The Martins (Mairtin) came to Ireland with Strongbow in the twelfth-century Anglo-Norman invasion. They became one of the famous, mostly Norman merchant families of Galway City, known collectively as the Tribes of Galway. The Martyns of Tullyra, County Galway, were one of the few Catholic families ever to be excluded from the harsh penal code, owing to their assistance of Protestants during the Catholic ascendancy of the seventeenth century.

The Menzies (Meinnearach) are a branch of the Anglo-Norman family of de Meyners of England, where the name has taken the form of "Manners" (of Etal and Rutland). The first of the name in Scotland was Sir Robert de Meyners, who was at the Court of Alexander II by 1224, and was created Great Chamberlain of Scotland by 1249. Alexander de Meyneris or Meinzeis had a charter of the lands of Durisdeer in Nithsdale from Robert I, and also held Weem and Aberfeldy, and Fortingal in Rannoch, or West AtholI (Fortingal later passed through an heiress to the Stewarts), and Glendochart, in Breadalbane. The Menzies fought for The Bruce at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314. Sir Robert de Mengues, Knight, had his lands erected into the Barony of Menzies in 1487. The last chieftain of a distinguished fourteenth-century cadet branch, the Menzies of Pitfoddels (their young chieftain had carried the Royal Standard at the battle of Invercarron in 1650) settled his estate of Blairs on the Catholic church, which is now Blairs’ College near Aberdeen, and which holds the surviving muniments of the old Scots College of Paris. The Menzies appear in the Roll of the Clans, 1597. Though after the Stewarts were driven from the throne in 1688 the chief of the Menzies favored the new government, the Menzies nonetheless were out in support of the Stewarts in the 1715 and 1745 Risings (though the chief sat out the 1745 Rising, the clan was out under Menzies of Shian). Menzies of Culdares introduced the first Larch trees to the Highlands in 1738, which was important to the reforestation of the Highlands. The Menzies of Culdares and Arndilly (Speyside) have inherited the chiefship. The name is pronounced "Meeng-us."

The Morrises (de Moireis: Latin "de Marisco"; Norman-French "de Marreis") are of Norman origin, and were a very powerful family in the south of Ireland attached to the Butlers of Ormond. They became Gaeticized, and adopted the patronymic name of Mac Muiris, now usually Morrissey. In 1485 a branch of these Ormond Morrises settled in Galway City, where they became one of the famous and mostly Norman tribes, or merchant families, of that city. They were prominent in the affairs of Galway City down to the time of Cromwell and the submergence of the Catholic aristocracy.

The Nugents (de Nuinnseann) settled to Ireland at the time of the Anglo-Norman invasion in the twelfth century, having come to England with William the Conqueror in 1066. In Ireland the family settled in what is now


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