Clan Gordon History

Gordon Clan Signet Ring               Gordon clan pendant


Clan Gordon, one of the most influential clans in the history of Scotland, draws it’s name from "Gor Dun" (Celtic for "great hill fort") in their original territory of Berwickshire in the borders of Scotland. The family settled in this area early in the twelfth century on the lands which were granted to them by King David 1 and retained estates there for three centuries.

At the beginning of the fourteenth century the Clan supported King Robert the Bruce in the War of Independence against the English and Sir Adam de Gordon was the ambassador who conveyed the famous 1320 Declaration of Independence to the Pope. For this and other services King Robert granted him the forfeited lands of the Cummings at Strathbogie in Aberdeenshire and the Clan moved northwards to their new territory.From the time of their move to the North the Clan steadily increased their lands and power. By the next century, like the Campbells in the West, they ruled much of the North with a great deal of independence. In 1447 Alexander, the Clan Chief, was created Earl of Huntly and the Clan’s influence spread out further from their main stronghold of Huntly Castle.

Always a warrior Clan within a very warlike nation, the Gordons were involved in most of Scotland’s conflicts - and more than a few of their own! As a result of their vigorous involvements, many of the Chiefs died in battle or lost their heads on the execution block. Nor were the Gordon women to be taken lightly. In 1550, the Chief of the Macintosh Clan, their main rival and enemy, visited Huntly Castle. When the Gordon Chief’s wife berated him, he jokingly put his neck upon the kitchen chopping block, declaring that he was now at her mercy, whereupon she snatched up a cleaver and neatly beheaded him.

The current Chief of Clan Gordon is Granville Charles Gomer Gordon, the Most Hon. 13th Marquis of Huntly.

The Gordon Clan Crest is a stag's head out of a coronet and the proud Gordon clan motto is "Bydand" which means (Remaining).

Our full Clan Gordon jewelry collection can be found here