“When the moon is full and the sky is bright beware it is MacFarlane’s Night!”
For much of their history, the MacFarlanes were a very turbulent lot. Their rallying cry, “Loch Sloy”, signalled many a night raid to “collect” cattle from their richer neighbors to the south and east. Their march-piobaireachd “Thogail nam Bo theid sinn“(To Lift the Cows We Shall Go) gives ample notice of intent. They were so competent that the full moon was known as “MacFarlane’s Lantern”. In 1592, the Clan was accused of slaying the Colquhoun of Luss and was outlawed. It no sooner got out from under that ban, than it were named in legislation in 1594, as being required to provide surety for good behaviour. Feuds, reiff (cattle raids), murder, fire-raising (arson), and even sorning (taking food and drink without payment) were commonplace accusations against the MacFarlanes and their allies during this period.
Artist: Maxine Miller