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Clans and Families of Ireland and Scotland
IV. The Kingdom of the Picts: Christianity, Paganism and the Making of Gaelic Scotland

Christian center and college of St. Andrews in Fife. It is further reflected in the use, at least from the 1200s, of the cross of St. Andrew on the royal seal, with its ancient Pictish significance. Thus we see reflected in modern Scotland evidence of the success of the early Pictish mission initiated by St. Comgall and St. Maelrubha.

Though the Columban church dominated royal circles in the tenth and eleventh centuries, the cult of St. Andrew, alive and well among the Culdees of the east coast, was revived in the national sense early in the twelfth, and the Columban clerics left Dunkeld (Perthshire), to which they had come under Kenneth MacAlpin, and went back to Iona. The Columban church had been banished from Pictland or Alba once before, in A.D. 711, by the Pictish king Nechtan, in connection with the original rise of the "Cult of St. Andrew." (This earlier banishment reflects the development of episcopal sees in Pictland after the synod of Whitby and under Northumbrian influence; the territorial, bishop-oriented Northumbrian church clashed with the abbey system of the Celtic tribal church). Some of the twelfth-century Columban monks even returned to Ireland, taking with them some of the saint’s relics. Why all this happened is probably best explained by several factors. Previous to 1100, the kings of Albany were high-kings in the Picto-Gaelic sense, and held little local power outside their own tribal area; they were at best overlords, and war leaders of the united tribal armies of northern Scotland (Alba) against the Viking sea-kings. Their careers mirrored that of Brian Boru in Ireland (d. 1014) in this regard. Their secular ecclesiastics were powerful and princely, and were drawn chiefly from the Kindred of St. Columba, mentioned above. These ecclesiastics were frankly aristocratic, and though sincere, never represented a grass-roots religious movement, and can hardly be said to represent the old Pictish church, whose true successors were the "Culdees" of especially Fife, Perth-shire and Aberdeenshire (the heartland of the old Pictish kingdom).

The Kindred of St. Columba was tied to the Gaelic tribal dynasties. This would come to have ramifications for the church in the twelfth century, for under the reforming influence of the Saxon princess St. Margaret, who became the second wife of Malcolm III (ca. 1090) the church was revived from the grass roots level by the east-coast Culdees of the original Pictish church. This revival was facilitated by the fact the bulk of the population was still largely Pictish in origin, especially outside the West Highland mountain areas (the Pictish kingdom had always been centered in the coastal lowlands to the east).

The incorporation of the Cineal nGabrain into the Pictish royal house, with its continued tradition of Pictish nuclear family succession, effectively disenfranchised the Cineal Loairn, who had previously enjoyed the right to alternate the kingship of Dal Riada with the Cineal nGabrain. This proves that the ninth-century union of the royal houses was not an exclusively Dalriadic one,- at least not from the perspective of the Cineal Loairn. The differences between the old Gaelic and new Picto-Gaelic systems of royal

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