Eòin Mòr Tànaiste Mac Dhòmhnaill

Eòin Mòr Tànaiste Mac Dhòmhnaill, aka John Mór Tanister or Iain Mac Dhòmhnaill, Gaelic lord, died 1427.

Eòin Mòr Tànaiste Mac Dhòmhnaill/John Mór Tanister MacDonald
TitleClan Chief: MacDonald of Dunnyveg
SuccessorDomhnall Ballach


Mac Dhòmhnaill was the second son of John Macdonald (John of Islay, Lord of the Isles) and Princess Margaret Stewart of Scotland, daughter of King Robert II.[1] He is the founder of Clan MacDonald of Dunnyveg.

Mac Dhòmhnaill was granted 120 merklands in Kintyre, with the castles of Dunaverty, Skipness and Airds and 60 merklands on Islay with the castle of Dunyvaig upon his father's death. Not being satisfied with his inheritance, he led a revolt against his brother Dómhnall Íle as Mac Dhòmhnaill was recognized as the heir-apparent (tànaiste). The rebellion started in 1387 and went on into the 1390s, and Eòin Mòr obtained the support of the powerful Clan MacLean kindred. However, Mac Dhòmhnaill and the MacLeans were eventually forced to submit to Dómhnall, and by 1395 Mac Dhòmhnaill had been forced to flee into Ireland. There he entered the service of King Richard II of England in Antrim and later King Henry IV.

Through his marriage with Margaret Bisset, a daughter of the MacEoin Bisset, Lord of the Glens, according to Mac Dhòmhnaill shanachies he received as the dowry the Glens and Rathlin Island in Ireland, then becoming known as Lord of Dunnyvaig and the Glens. In fact this is a later invention, for the MacEoin Bissets continued to hold the Glens of Antrim until at least as late as 1522, when the last known died in battle.[2]

Mac Dhòmhnaill led the reserve at the battle of Harlaw just north of Inverurie in Aberdeenshire on 24 July 1411 and later fought with Robert Stewart, Regent Albany who had forayed into Argyll to force his brother Dómhnall Íle to surrender.

Eòin Mòr Tànaiste Mac Dhòmhnaill was attacked and killed by James Campbell after a scheduled meeting at Ard-du, Islay in 1427. He is thought to have been buried at Finlaggan.[3]


By his wife, Margaret, daughter of MacEoin Bisset, Lord of The Glens, they had:

He is also the father of Ranald Bane MacDonald, by a daughter of the Finnon (the Green Abbot) or by his wife Margaret.


  1. "The Family Tree of the Lords of the Isles". 2010. Archived from the original on 4 July 2010. Retrieved 24 November 2010.
  2. History of Glenarm Castle
  3. "People and Events". Finlaggan: The Centre of the Lordship of the Isles. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
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