This Celtic name is derived from the Gaelic ‘Macaonghuis’, meaning ‘son of Angus’. Grimble notes the earliest reference to the sons of Angus is given in the seventh-century chronicle, Senchus Fer n’Alban (History of the Men of Scotland). The Scots of Dalriada appear to have been divided into three kindreds: those of Gabran, Lorne and Angus. The kindred of Angus are said to have possessed Islay, later to be the seat of the Lordship of the Isles. There is, however, little concrete evidence to connect all of this to the MacInneses as a distinct family. They arose around Morvern, and were in possession of Kinlochaline Castle when it was attacked in 1645 by the Macdonalds who had risen for Montrose against the Covenanters, led by Campbell of Argyll. They may simply have held the castle as keepers or captains, however, as they had become by this time quite dependent upon the Campbells. Another section of this family were noted as hereditary archers to the Mackinnon chiefs on Skye, and this is alluded to in the most common crest of this family, which is an arm holding a bow. The main body of the clan followed the Campbells in supporting the Hanoverian cause against the Stuart exiles, but one branch, which had become connected withthe Stewarts of Ardsheal, fought for the Jacobite cause. In common with many fragmented families, the Macinneses scattered worldwide during the great periods of emigration and the name is commonly found throughout the English-speaking world, particularly in Canada and New Zealand.

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