Tobar an Dualchais - Kist O Riches

The voices of the past ... brought to life through the latest technology - The speik o a bygane age ... gien new virr wi fantoosh technology
This website contains over 36,000 oral recordings made in Scotland and further afield, from the 1930s onwards.
The items you can listen to include stories, songs, music, poetry and factual information.


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James Graham, Marquis of Montrose. In the public domain.

The Battle of Inverlochy was one of a series of battles fought during the Scottish Civil War of 1644-45. It took place on 2 February 1645 and was a decisive victory for the Scottish Loyalists against the Covenanters.

In the winter of 1644-45 Scottish Loyalists James Graham, the Marquis of Montrose, and Alasdair MacDonald (Alasdair MacColla) led an army to Inverary Castle, the stronghold of Covenanter Archibald Campbell, the Marquis of Argyll. They captured the town of Inverary and Campbell clansmen were put to death.

By the end of January 1645 Montrose and MacColla had advanced north to Fort Augustus where they learnt that the Covenanters had blocked their route to the north and also to the south, where the Marquis of Argyll's men were stationed at Inverlochy. Montrose and MacColla decided to double back and attack Argyll's men. They travelled 30 miles over mountainous terrain in under 36 hours, arriving just before dawn on 2 February, and surprising the Covenanters who assumed they were still in Fort Augustus.

As the battle raged, the Covenanters came under attack from all sides and over 1,500 were killed, while Montrose is reputed to have lost 250 men.

The song 'Là Inbhir Lòchaidh' gives an account of the battle and was composed by John MacDonald (Iain Lom), poet to the MacDonalds of Keppoch and eyewitness at the battle. He had a great hostility towards both the Scottish Covenanters and the Campbells.

In this recording from 1976 Rev. William Matheson from North Uist sings 'Là Inbhir Lòchaidh'.

Listen to 'Là Inbhir Lòchaidh'

Browse all recordings of Rev. William Matheson

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About the Website

Julie Fowlis and Chris Wright were Tobar an Dualchais' Artists in Residence in 2012


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