A Policy Characterised by Cunning and Perfidy

Inveraray Castle, on the shore of Loch Fyne, Argyll.
Inveraray Castle, on the shore of Loch Fyne, Argyll.

After this period the rise of the Argyll family to power and influence was rapid, and the encroachments which had commenced with the branches of their own clan soon involved most of the clans in their neighbourhood; and their history is most remarkable from their extraordinary progress from a station of comparative inferiority to one of unusual eminence, as well as from the constant and steady adherence of all the barons of that house to the same deep system of designing policy by which they attained their greatness.

It would be inconsistent with the limits of this work to follow the history of this family farther, and the omission is of the less importance, as during the early part their history is identic with that of all the other Highland clans of no great notoriety; while in the later part, when they began to rise upon the ruins of the great families of the Isles, it becomes in some degree the same with that of the Highlanders generally, and consists principally of the details of a policy characterised by cunning and perfidy, although deep and far-sighted, and which obtained its usual success in the acquisition of great temporal grandeur and power.

William Forbes Skene, The Highlanders of Scotland, Vol. 2., London: Murray, 1837.

Published by Christian Clay Columba Campbell

Christian Clay Columba Campbell is a Roman Catholic of the Anglican Use. As Senior Warden of the Cathedral of the Incarnation (Orlando, FL), he organised the process by which the parish accepted the Apostolic Constitution Anglicanorum coetibus, petitioning to join the Catholic Church. The Anglican Cathedral is now the Church of the Incarnation in the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. Personal queries should be directed to me at eccentricbliss dot com.

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