|King of Alba|
|Died|| 14 August 1040 |
Pitgaveny, near Elgin
|Issue|| Malcolm III, King of Alba|
Donald III, King of Alba
Máel Muire, Earl of Atholl
|Father||Crínán of Dunkeld|
Donnchad mac Crinain (Modern Gaelic: Donnchadh mac Crìonain;anglicised as Duncan I, and nicknamed An t-Ilgarach, "the Diseased" or "the Sick"; ca. 1001 – 14 August 1040) was king of Scotland ( Alba ) from 1034 to 1040. He is the historical basis of the "King Duncan" in Shakespeare's play Macbeth .
The Kingdom of Scotland was a sovereign state in northwest Europe traditionally said to have been founded in 843. Its territories expanded and shrank, but it came to occupy the northern third of the island of Great Britain, sharing a land border to the south with the Kingdom of England. It suffered many invasions by the English, but under Robert I it fought a successful War of Independence and remained an independent state throughout the late Middle Ages. In 1603, James VI of Scotland became King of England, joining Scotland with England in a personal union. In 1707, the two kingdoms were united to form the Kingdom of Great Britain under the terms of the Acts of Union. Following the annexation of the Northern Isles from the Kingdom of Norway in 1472 and final capture of the Royal Burgh of Berwick by the Kingdom of England in 1482, the territory of the Kingdom of Scotland corresponded to that of modern-day Scotland, bounded by the North Sea to the east, the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, and the North Channel and Irish Sea to the southwest.
The Kingdom of Alba refers to the Kingdom of Scotland between the deaths of Donald II in 900 and of Alexander III in 1286, which then led indirectly to the Scottish Wars of Independence. The name is one of convenience, as throughout this period the elite and populace of the Kingdom were predominantly Pictish-Gaels or later Pictish-Gaels and Scoto-Norman, and differs markedly from the period of the Stuarts, in which the elite of the kingdom were speakers of Middle English, which later evolved and came to be called Lowland Scots. There is no precise Gaelic equivalent for the English terminology "Kingdom of Alba", as the Gaelic term Rìoghachd na h-Alba means 'Kingdom of Scotland'. English-speaking scholars adapted the Gaelic name for Scotland to apply to a particular political period in Scottish history during the High Middle Ages.
King Duncan is a fictional character in Shakespeare's Macbeth. He is the father of two youthful sons, and the victim of a well-plotted regicide in a power grab by his trusted captain Macbeth. The origin of the character lies in a narrative of the historical Donnchad mac Crinain, King of Scots, in Raphael Holinshed's 1587 The Chronicles of England, Scotland, and Ireland, a history of Britain familiar to Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Unlike Holinshed's incompetent King Duncan, Shakespeare's King Duncan is crafted as a sensitive, insightful, and generous father-figure whose murder grieves Scotland and is accounted the cause of turmoil in the natural world.
He was a son of Crínán, hereditary lay abbot of Dunkeld, and Bethóc, daughter of king Máel Coluim mac Cináeda (Malcolm II).
Crínán of Dunkeld was the hereditary abbot of the monastery of Dunkeld, and perhaps the Mormaer of Atholl. Crínán was progenitor of the House of Dunkeld, the dynasty which would rule Scotland until the later 13th century. He was the son-in-law of one king, and the father of another.
Lay abbot is a name used to designate a layman on whom a king or someone in authority bestowed an abbey as a reward for services rendered; he had charge of the estate belonging to it, and was entitled to part of the income. The custom existed principally in the Frankish Empire from the eighth century until the ecclesiastical reforms of the eleventh.
Bethóc ingen Maíl Coluim meic Cináeda was the elder daughter of Máel Coluim mac Cináeda, King of Scots, and the mother of his successor, Duncan I.
Unlike the "King Duncan" of Shakespeare's Macbeth, the historical Duncan appears to have been a young man. He followed his grandfather Malcolm as king after the latter's death on 25 November 1034, without apparent opposition. He may have been Malcolm's acknowledged successor or Tànaiste as the succession appears to have been uneventful.Earlier histories, following John of Fordun, supposed that Duncan had been king of Strathclyde in his grandfather's lifetime, between 1018 and 1034, ruling the former Kingdom of Strathclyde as an appanage. Modern historians discount this idea , although it is supported by the ODNB. .
William Shakespeare was an English poet, playwright and actor, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's greatest dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon". His extant works, including collaborations, consist of approximately 39 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and a few other verses, some of uncertain authorship. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright.
Tanistry is a Gaelic system for passing on titles and lands. In this system the Tanist is the office of heir-apparent, or second-in-command, among the (royal) Gaelic patrilineal dynasties of Ireland, Scotland and Mann, to succeed to the chieftainship or to the kingship.
John of Fordun was a Scottish chronicler. It is generally stated that he was born at Fordoun, Mearns. It is certain that he was a secular priest, and that he composed his history in the latter part of the 14th century; and it is probable that he was a chaplain in St Machar's Cathedral of Aberdeen.
An earlier source, a variant of the Chronicle of the Kings of Alba (CK-I), gives Duncan's wife the Gaelic name Suthen.Whatever his wife's name may have been, Duncan had at least two sons. The eldest, Malcolm III (Máel Coluim mac Donnchada) was king from 1058 to 1093, the second Donald III (Domnall Bán, or "Donalbane") was king afterwards. Máel Muire, Earl of Atholl is a possible third son of Duncan, although this is uncertain.
The Chronicle of the Kings of Alba, or Scottish Chronicle, is a short written chronicle of the Kings of Alba, covering the period from the time of Kenneth MacAlpin until the reign of Kenneth II. W.F. Skene called it the Chronicle of the Kings of Scots, and some have called it the Older Scottish Chronicle, but Chronicle of the Kings of Alba is emerging as the standard scholarly name.
Malcolm III was King of Scots from 1058 to 1093. He was later nicknamed "Canmore". Malcolm's long reign of 35 years preceded the beginning of the Scoto-Norman age. Henry I of England and Eustace III of Boulogne were his sons-in-law, making him the maternal grandfather of Empress Matilda, William Adelin and Matilda of Boulogne. All three of them were prominent in English politics during the 12th century.
Donald III, and nicknamed "Donald the Fair" or "Donald the White", was King of Scots from 1093–1094 and 1094–1097.
The early period of Duncan's reign was apparently uneventful, perhaps a consequence of his youth. Macbeth (Mac Bethad mac Findláich) is recorded as having been his dux, today rendered as "duke" and meaning nothing more than the rank between prince and marquess, but then still having the Roman meaning of "war leader". In context — "dukes of Francia" had half a century before replaced the Carolingian kings of the Franks and in England the over-mighty Godwin of Wessex was called a dux — this suggests that Macbeth may have been the power behind the throne.
A duke (male) or duchess (female) can either be a monarch ruling over a duchy or a member of royalty or nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch. The title comes from French duc, itself from the Latin dux, 'leader', a term used in republican Rome to refer to a military commander without an official rank, and later coming to mean the leading military commander of a province.
The phrase "power behind the throne" refers to a person or group that informally exercises the real power of a high-ranking office, such as a head of state. In politics, it most commonly refers to a relative, aide, or nominal subordinate of a political leader who serves as de facto leader, setting policy through possessing great influence and/or skillful manipulation.
In 1039, Duncan led a large Scots army south to besiege Durham, but the expedition ended in disaster. Duncan survived, but the following year he led an army north into Moray, Macbeth's domain, apparently on a punitive expedition against Moray.There he was killed in action, at Bothnagowan, now Pitgaveny, near Elgin, by the men of Moray led by Macbeth, probably on 14 August 1040. He is thought to have been buried at Elgin before later relocation to the Isle of Iona.
Durham is a historic city and the county town of County Durham in North East England. The city lies on the River Wear, to the west of Sunderland, south of Newcastle upon Tyne and to the north of Darlington. Founded over the final resting place of St Cuthbert, its Norman cathedral became a centre of pilgrimage in medieval England. The cathedral and adjacent 11th-century castle were designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. The castle has been the home of Durham University since 1832. HM Prison Durham is also located close to the city centre. City of Durham is the name of the civil parish.
A punitive expedition is a military journey undertaken to punish a state or any group of persons outside the borders of the punishing state. It is usually undertaken in response to perceived disobedient or morally wrong behavior, either as revenge or to apply strong diplomatic pressure without a formal declaration of war. In the 19th century, punitive expeditions were used more commonly as pretexts for colonial adventures that resulted in annexations, regime changes or changes in policies of the affected state to favour one or more colonial powers.
Killed in action (KIA) is a casualty classification generally used by militaries to describe the deaths of their own combatants at the hands of hostile forces. The United States Department of Defense, for example, says that those declared KIA need not have fired their weapons but have been killed due to hostile attack. KIAs do not come from incidents such as accidental vehicle crashes and other "non-hostile" events or terrorism. KIA can be applied both to front-line combat troops and to naval, air and support troops. Someone who is killed in action during a particular event is denoted with a † (dagger) beside their name to signify their death in that event or events.
Duncan is depicted as an elderly king in the play Macbeth (1606) by William Shakespeare. He is killed in his sleep by the protagonist, Macbeth.
In the historical novel Macbeth the King (1978) by Nigel Tranter, Duncan is portrayed as a schemer who is fearful of Macbeth as a possible rival for the throne. He tries to assassinate Macbeth by poisoning and then when this fails, attacks his home with an army. In self-defence Macbeth meets him in battle and kills him in personal combat.
In the animated television series Gargoyles he is depicted as a weak and conniving king who assassinates those who he believes threaten his rule.He even tries to assassinate Macbeth, forcing Demona to ally with the Moray nobleman, with Duncan's resulting death coming from attempting to strike an enchanted orb of energy that one of the Weird Sisters gave to Macbeth to take Duncan down.
Duncan: This guy was a jerk. I mean, really. A paranoid tyrant who thought the world was out to get him. Well, not the world so much as his cousin, Macbeth. I suppose I can understand seeing Macbeth as a threat to the throne, but he just seemed to go out of his way to make Macbeth miserable. He reveled in it. When he died, we were all happy to see him bite it.
Alexander I, posthumously nicknamed The Fierce, was the King of Scotland from 1107 to his death.
Macbeth was King of Scots from 1040 until his death. He was titled King of Alba during his life, and ruled over only a portion of present-day Scotland.
Máel Coluim mac Domnaill was king of Alba, becoming king when his cousin Constantine II abdicated to become a monk. He was the son of Donald II.
Malcolm IV, nicknamed Virgo, "the Maiden" was King of Scotland from 1153 until his death. He was the eldest son of Henry, Earl of Huntingdon and Northumbria and Ada de Warenne. The original Malcolm Canmore, a name now associated with his great-grandfather Malcolm III, he succeeded his grandfather David I, and shared David's Anglo-Norman tastes.
Cináed mac Maíl Coluim was King of Scots (Alba). The son of Malcolm I, he succeeded King Cuilén on the latter's death at the hands of Rhydderch ap Dyfnwal in 971.
Malcolm II was King of the Scots from 1005 until his death. He was a son of King Kenneth II; the Prophecy of Berchán says that his mother was a woman of Leinster and refers to him as Forranach, "the Destroyer".
Cináed mac Duib anglicised as Kenneth III, and nicknamed An Donn, "the Chief" or "the Brown", was King of Scots from 997 to 1005. He was the son of Dub. Many of the Scots sources refer to him as Giric son of Kenneth son of Dub, which is taken to be an error. An alternate explanation is that Kenneth had a son, Giric, who ruled jointly with his father
The House of Dunkeld, in Scottish Gaelic Dùn Chailleann, is a historiographical and genealogical construct to illustrate the clear succession of Scottish kings from 1034 to 1040 and from 1058 to 1286. The line is also variously referred to by historians as "The Canmores", and "MacMalcolm".
Máel Muire of Atholl was Mormaer of Atholl at the beginning of the 12th century, until sometime perhaps in the 1130s. According to the Orkneyinga Saga, Máel Muire was a son of king Donnchad I and a younger brother of King Máel Coluim III. A Malmori d' Athótla is mentioned in a charter relating to a year after 1130, contained within the Book of Deer. If the first part is true, and the second part refers to the same Máel Muire, then this Máel Muire lived for more than 90 years, between the death of King Donnchad I in 1040 and the 1130s. It seems likely that his paternal grandfather Crínán was also Mormaer of Atholl. Máel Muire then probably inherited the Mormaerdom in compensation for not inheriting the kingship.
The Mormaerdom or Kingdom of Moray was a lordship in High Medieval Scotland that was destroyed by King David I of Scotland in 1130. It did not have the same territory as the modern local government council area of Moray, which is a much smaller area, around Elgin. The medieval lordship was in fact centred on both the lower Spey valley and the environs of Inverness and the northern parts of the Great Glen, and probably originally included Buchan and Mar, as well as Ross.
Findláech of Moray was the King or Mormaer of Moray, ruling from some point before 1014 until his death in 1020.
The so-called House of Moray is a historiographical and genealogical construct to illustrate the succession of rulers whose base was at the region of Moray and who ruled sometimes a larger kingdom. It is much the same as Cenél Loairn, an originally Gaelic concept to express one of the two rivalling leader clans of early medieval Scotland.
The High Middle Ages of Scotland encompass Scotland in the era between the death of Domnall II in 900 AD and the death of King Alexander III in 1286, which was an indirect cause of the Scottish Wars of Independence.
Harald Maddadsson was Earl of Orkney and Mormaer of Caithness from 1139 until 1206. He was the son of Matad, Mormaer of Atholl, and Margaret, daughter of Earl Haakon Paulsson of Orkney. Of mixed Norse and Gaelic blood, and a descendant of Scots kings, he was a significant figure in northern Scotland, and played a prominent part in Scottish politics of the twelfth century. The Orkneyinga Saga names him one of the three most powerful Earls of Orkney along with Sigurd Eysteinsson and Thorfinn Sigurdsson.
Máel Coluim mac Alaxandair was an illegitimate son of Alexander I of Scotland was an unsuccessful pretender to the Scottish throne. He is a relatively obscure figure owing primarily to the scarcity of source material, appearing only in pro-David English sources, which label him a "bastard".
Duncan I of ScotlandBorn: unknown 14 August
| King of Scots |