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Malcolm the second

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Malcolm II, son of Kenneth II, demonstrated a rare ability to survive among early Scottish kings by reigning for twenty-nine years. He was a clever and ambitious man. Brehon tradition provided that the successor to Malcolm was to be selected by him from among the descendants of King Aedh, with the consent of Malcolm’s ministers and of the church. Ostensibly in an attempt to end the devastating feuds in the north of Scotland, but obviously influenced by the Norman feudal model, Malcolm ignored tradition and determined to retain the succession within his own line. But since Malcolm had no son of his own, he undertook to negotiate a series of dynastic marriages of his three daughters to men who might otherwise be his rivals, while securing the loyalty of the principal chiefs, their relatives. First he married his daughter Bethoc to Crinan, Thane of The Isles, head of the house of Atholl and secular Abbot of Dunkeld; then his youngest daughter, Olith, to Sigurd, Earl of Orkney. His middle daughter, Donada, was married to Findláich, Mormaer of Moray, Thane of Ross and Cromarty and a descendant of Loarn of Dalriada. This was risky business under the rules of succession of the Gael, but he thereby secured his rear and, taking advantage of the renewal of Viking attacks on England, marched south to fight the Sasunnaich. He defeated the Angles at Carham in 1018 and installed his grandson, Duncan, son of the Abbot of Dunkeld and his choice as Tanist, in Carlisle as King of Cumbria that same year.

1. BETHOC [BethócBeatrix Beatrice Betoch Bethok] “Genealogy of King William the Lyon” dated 1175 names “Betoch filii Malcolmi” as parent of “Malcolmi filii Dunecani”. The Chronicle of the Scots and Picts dated 1177 names “Cran Abbatis de Dunkelden et Bethok filia Malcolm mac Kynnet” as parents of King Duncan. source Beatrice who married Crynyne Abthane of Dul and Steward of the Isles

2. DONADA [ Dovada Duada Doada Donalda] R alph Holinshed´s 1577 Chronicle of Scotland names “Doada” as second daughter of Malcolm II King of Scotland and adds that she married “Sinell the thane of Glammis, by whom she had issue one Makbeth”

3. OLITH [Alice Olith Olitha Alitha Anlite Anlita] Orkneyinga Saga records that “Earl Sigurd” married “the daughter of Malcolm King of Scots”. Snorre records the marriage of “Sigurd the Thick” and “a daughter of the Scottish king Malcolm”. Ulster journal of archaeology, Volume 6 By Ulster Archaeological Society names her as (Alice) wife of Sygurt and daughter of Malcolm II. The American historical magazine, Volume 2 By Publishing Society of New York, Americana Society pg 529 names her Olith or Alice.

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