Duncan Ban MacIntyre, Gaelic Bard

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by John Sinclair McIntyre, a descendant of Mairi Ban Og Macintyre

Duncan Ban Macintyre was born at Druim Liaghart, Glen Orchy, Argyll  on 20th March 1724 and died on 14th May 1812 in Edinburgh. He is renowned for his honest appraisal in verse of Highland life in Scotland at that time. His poetic works are all the more remarkable as he could neither read nor write, but committed these to his memory. As Gaelic was his native tongue, all his poems were in this language when recorded at a later stage and were subsequently translated to English. It is probable that he had a knowledge of English, but obviously preferred his own language through which he was better able to capture the nuances and emotions which he wished to express. Duncan’s poems are equal to the works of any other Scottish poet and reflect his love of Highland life in a way never before expressed in verse.

Duncan married Mairi Ban Og Macintyre, the daughter of a local inn owner at Glen Orchy. Their descendants are recorded in a tree further down on this page. Only female-line descendants have been traced to the present.

It is with pride that we of our later generations of his clan, honour his love and dedication to a way of life, which has drifted into history.

Duncan Ban MacIntyre is buried in Greyfriars Kirkyard, Edinburgh, Scotland (scroll down to images below). His monument is near Dalmally, Scotland (final image below). Click on an image to enlarge it in a new window.

Biography and Genealogy

(for the most part, unknown sources)