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Historic Holiday- Clans, Tartans, and Edwardian Postcards

Clan Urquhart


 Motto: Per Mare et Terras (By Sea and Land- on their coat of arms), official motto "Meane weil, speak weil, and do weil."

Plant Badge: Wallflower

Lands: The Urquharts occupied the lands in the district and town of Cromarty, a former royal burgh. The clan castle, Urquhart Castle, is located next to Loch Ness. The clan seat however, is Castle Craig on the Cromarty Firth.


The name Urquhart is ancient Gaelic, and has been translated as both "Upon a rowan wood," and "The fort on the knoll." These translations may be referencing the location of the Urquharts clan's seat. The Urquharts have a proud history of producing great scholars and writers. In the 17th Century, Sir Thomas Urquhart compiled a genealogy of his family and claimed that he was 143 in direct descent from Adam and Eve. Sir Thomas was a well-known writer in the 17th Century, but he was also a participant in the Battle of Worcester, where he was captured and imprisoned in the Tower of London. It was during this time that Sir Thomas translated the first book of Rabelais from French to English. The current chief is Kenneth Trist Urquhart, and is one of four clan chiefs who is also an American citizen.


The Urquharts clan's tartan is traditionally green, crossed with black and blue. However, the Modern, Ancient, and Weathered versions have a red and white stripes, whereas the Broad Red carries only a wider red stripe, as can be seen in this postcard. The families eligible to wear this tartan are Urquharts and Cromartys.


Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
N. TAR 10
Digital Number:
N. TAR 10 Urquhart Front, N.TAR 10 Urquhart Back
Dumfries & Galloway Caouncil

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