Fortitudine (With fortitude)

MacRae Tartan
©2021 Gazetteer for Scotland

MacRae Tartan

The MacRae name is thought to be ecclesiastical in origin, meaning 'Son of Grace', rather than a patronymic name such as MacNeil. The MacRaes, also spelt Mackrae or McRae, were concentrated around Kintail in Wester Ross. It was here they became great supporters of the MacKenzies, and when the MacKenzie Chiefs relocated to Kinellan they left the MacRaes as Constables of Eilean Donan Castle.

The MacRaes were renowned for their military prowess and fought viciously for the MacKenzies against the MacDonalds in 1539, slaying the MacDonald chief as he laid siege to Eilean Donan castle. The MacRaes prospered along with the MacKenzies and the title of Constableship of Eilean Donan became hereditary. They were also made Chamberlains of Kintail.

In more recent times McRae has become a name synonymous with rally driving. Jimmy McRae won the British Rally Championship five times. His son Colin McRae (b.1968) became the first British World Rally Champion in 1995. Colin's younger brother, Alister (b.1970) has also risen into the top grade of world rallying.

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