PS 013 – The Rout of Glenfruin

      Ruaig Ghlinne Freòin

Primary Sources

C1 Ruag Glen froin / MacGrigors March C1.11: 27
Ruaig Ghlinne Freoir / The pursuit of Glenfrooig H.2: 3r
D1 Ruaig Ghlenne Fruin…Glenn a Bhroin / The Rout of Glen Fruin D1.8: 48
K2 Ruaig Ghlinne Fruin / The Rout of Glenfruin K2.31: 65

Notes on Gaelic Title

Ruaig Ghlinne Freòin  Ruag Glen froin C1; Ruaig Ghlinne Freoir / The pursuit of Glenfroo… H (apparently cut off by the binder); Ruaig Ghlenne Fruin (Properly Glenn a Bhroin.) Valley of Sorrow. / The Rout of Glen Fruin D1; Ruaig Ghlinne Fruin / The Rout of Glenfruin K2. The Rout of Glenfruin. Donald MacDonald’s (D1) reading of the placename as ‘The Glen of Sorrow’, i.e. Gleann a’ bhròin, is not generally supported. For stories and a song about the battle, see M.D. Newton, Bho Chluaidh gu Calasraid[:] from the Clyde to Callander, Stornoway (1999), p. 191 ff.

Roderick Cannon (2009)

Archive Recordings

1971 George Moss
1971a George Moss

Other Material

William Donaldson’s Set Tunes Notes (2001)
William Donaldson’s Set Tunes Notes (2013)

1 thought on “PS 013 – The Rout of Glenfruin”

  1. The momentous conflict between the Clann Gregor and the Colquhouns of Luss had tragic and far-reaching consequences, and spawned a number of inter-related pibrochs, the names of which are tangled and confused, as it took place over four hundred years ago. The names have sometimes been interchanged, thanks to oral tradition.

    The tune Colin Campbell called ‘MacGregor’s March’ is the one generally called ‘The Rout of Glenfruin’, and this name was written in above his original title in the MS. This may be helpful when interpreting the piece ( it is often played as a lament; which is entirely appropriate) – Campbell’s name and setting can also suggest a bolder, more agressive and assertive performance – one might even think of it as a descriptive piece, conjuring up the battle. (David Glen’s setting lends itself to this treatment.)

    Other tunes which are part of this musical nexus are ‘MacGregor’s Gathering’, ‘Black Wedder White Tail’, and ‘White Wedder Black Tail’ (the sheep in the description was the evidence which hanged two MacGregors for sheepstealing and led to the battle.)

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