Clan Robertson History

Robertson Signet Ring             Clan Robertson pendant


Robertson, that fierce and warlike clan, traces it's lineage down from the ancient Celtic hereditary Abbots of Dunkeld. These Abbots were not always gentle Churchmen, as they traditionally led the vanguard of the army into battle. Bethoc, the daughter of King Malcolm 11 married the Abbot Crinan (killed in battle in 1045) and in 1034 their first son became King Duncan 1, who was later murdered by Macbeth.

Several generations later, Donnachaidh Reamhar (Stout Duncan) was Chief of the Donnachaidh Clan, the other name by which the Robertson Clan is still known. Duncan was a close supporter of Robert the Bruce and led the Clan, with great valour, for the victorious King Robert in the battle of Bannockburn. Over a century later, his direct descendant, Robert Riach (Grizzled Robert) was created Baron of the lands of Struan in Tayside, near Blair Atholl. The Barony was Robert's reward for capturing the murderers of King James 1 and delivering them to the court. It was from this Robert that the Clan took the name of Robertson and the Clan Chief is always known as Struan Robertson.

The warrior spirit and unswerving loyalty of the Clan to the Stewart dynasty involved them in many of the conflicts which shook Scotland.
Under one Chief, the Clan fought for the Jacobites against William 111 in 1689, again in the Jacobite rising of 1715 and although the Chief really was too old by then, took part in the 1745 uprising for Bonnie Prince Charlie. The defeat of the uprising and the subsequent suppression of the Highland clans by the government brought ruin to the Robertsons and the loss of titles and great territories.

Margaret became the 18th Chief in 1749, but most of the remainder of the estates were seized from her heir by the government. Dispossessed, the Chiefs lived at Loch Rannoch and later at the residence known as Rannoch Barracks. Within a few years of Jean Robertson, in 1910, succeeding her brother to become 24th Chief, the last of the Clan lands had been sold.

Struan and Dunalastair, near to Tummel Bridge are the ancient burial sites of the Robertsons. To the west of Blair Atholl, at Bruar Falls, is the Clan Donnachaidh museum which houses the famous Clach na Bratach, the charm-stone of the Clan. This rock crystal has been associated with the Clan since before Bannockburn and is thought to have been worn by the ancient Abbots during their battles.

The Robertson Clan Crest is a hand holding up an imperial crown and the proud Robertson clan motto, “Virtutis Gloria merces” meaning (Glory is the reward of valour).The present Chief is Alexander Gilbert Haldane Robertson of Struan, 24th Chief of Clan Donnachaidh, 28th of Struan.

Our full range of Clan Robertson jewelry can be found here