The name originates from
Old Norse Thorketill (Thor's kettle), in Gaelic MacCorcadail, and the clan held lands in
Argyll in the fourteenth century. From Ewen Mackcorquydill of Phantelan, of whom there is
a record in 1434, descended Duncan MacCorquodale of Phantillans, and from him Sir Malcolm
MacCorquodale (1901-71), 1st and last Lord MacCorquodale of Newton, created in 1955.
MACCORQUODALE: The name is often given as a sept of the MacLeod on no more evidence than that it is derived from 'son of Thorketill, or Torquil', the latter name being that of the progenitor of the MacLeods of Lewis. Such name is of Scandinavian origin meaning "Cauldron of the Thunder Spirit" and undoubtedly would have spread wherever the maurauding Norsemen stamped their influence. The traditional account of the MacCorquodales makes them of more ancient origin than the MacLeods, for the lands of Fionnt Eilean comprised, at one time, the northern shore of Loch Awe from Avich to Ard-an-aiseig, and such are said to have been granted to another Torquil, progenitor of the MacCorquodales, by King Kenneth MacAlpin. There is no evidence that this Torquil was of Clan Leod and the name MacCorquodale appears seldon, if ever, in the histories of that clan. It is evident by their Argyllshire habitat and title that the MacCorquodales ARE A DISTINCT CLAN, whose chiefs were the Barons MacCorquodale of Phantelane (The 'White Island' - Eilean-a-Bharain on Loch Tromlee). From their island castle they held Baronial power over the thousands of mountainuous acres which have been their domain since at least the 13th century. In 1428 Euan MacCorquodale and the chief of the Campbells were summoned to Court, with their charters in order that adjudication might be made in a land dispute with Scrymgeour, Constable of Dundee, who held the neighbouring lands of Glassary. Such was resolved when Euan's son, Malcolm, married the Constable's daughter in 1436. The Dean of Lismore's book of Gaelic poetry (collected 1514-1551) contains verses by Effric nighean Thorcaidill, poetess of the clan, and in 1542 the MacCorquodale lands were re-incorporated by royal charter as a free barony. In 1612, younger sons of the chief were charged by the Privy Council for consorting with proscribed MacGregors and the clan history and succession in the rest of that century is confused by two step brothers each contested the other's claim. The MacCorquodales supported the Campbells in the Civil Wars and 'Colkitto' MacDonald sacked their island home in 1645. Since the death of the last Baron in the 18th century the chiefship has been uncertain.
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