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King Of Scotland/Picts Donald II Of Alba "the Madman"
(-900)
King Of Scotland Malcom I Of Alba "the Dangerous Red"
(Bef 900-954)

King Kenneth II "The Fratricide" Of Scotland (Alba)
(Bef 954-995)

 

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Unknown

King Kenneth II "The Fratricide" Of Scotland (Alba)

  • Born: Bef 954
  • Marriage: Unknown
  • Died: 995, Fettercairn
  • Buried: Iona

bullet   Another name for Kenneth was Cináed mac Maíl Coluim.

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bullet  Noted events in his life were:

• Royal. ? - c.995 Scottish monarch. Son of King Malcolm I, who he succeeded in 954. Said to have led a savage raid on Northumbria, but was later granted lands between the Rivers Tweed and Forth by the Saxon King Edgar. This is the earliest mention of the River Tweed as a border of Scotland. Killed at Finela's Castle, Fettercairn and buried on the island of Iona.

Cináed mac Maíl Coluim, (Modern Gaelic: Coinneach mac Mhaoil Chaluim)[1] anglicised as Kenneth II, and nicknamed An Fionnghalach, "The Fratricide" [2] (before 954 \endash 995) was King of Scotland (Alba). The son of Malcolm I (Máel Coluim mac Domnaill), he succeeded King Cuilén (Cuilén mac Iduilb) on the latter's death at the hands of Amdarch of Strathclyde in 971.

The Chronicle of the Kings of Alba was compiled in Kenneth's reign, but many of the place names mentioned are entirely corrupt, if not fictitious.[3] Whatever the reality, the Chronicle states that "[h]e immediately plundered [Strathclyde] in part. Kenneth's infantry were slain with very great slaughter in Moin Uacoruar." The Chronicle further states that Kenneth plundered Northumbria three times, first as far as Stainmore, then to Cluiam and lastly to the River Dee by Chester. These raids may belong to around 980, when the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records attacks on Cheshire.[4]

In 973, the Chronicle of Melrose reports that Kenneth, with Máel Coluim I (Máel Coluim mac Domnaill), the King of Strathclyde, "Maccus, king of very many islands" (i.e. Magnus Haraldsson (Maccus mac Arailt), King of Mann and the Isles) and other kings, Welsh and Norse, came to Chester to acknowledge the overlordship of the English king Edgar the Peaceable.[5] It may be that Edgar here regulated the frontier between the southern lands of the kingdom of Alba and the northern lands of his English kingdom. Cumbria was English, the western frontier lay on the Solway. In the east, the frontier lay somewhere in later Lothian, south of Edinburgh.[6]

The Annals of Tigernach, in an aside, name three of the Mormaers of Alba in Kenneth's reign in entry in 976: Cellach mac Fíndgaine, Cellach mac Baireda and Donnchad mac Morgaínd. The third of these, if not an error for Domnall mac Morgaínd, is very likely a brother of Domnall, and thus the Mormaer of Moray. The Mormaerdoms or kingdoms ruled by the two Cellachs cannot be identified.

The feud which had persisted since the death of King Indulf (Idulb mac Causantín) between his descendants and Kenneth's family persisted. In 977 the Annals of Ulster report that "Amlaíb mac Iduilb [Amlaíb, son of Indulf], King of Scotland, was killed by Cináed mac Domnaill." The Annals of Tigernach give the correct name of Amlaíb's killer: Cináed mac Maíl Coluim, or Kenneth II. Thus, even if only for a short time, Kenneth had been overthrown by the brother of the previous king.[7]

Adam of Bremen tells that Sweyn Forkbeard found exile in Scotland at this time, but whether this was with Kenneth, or one of the other kings in Scotland, is unknown. Also at this time, Njal's Saga, the Orkneyinga Saga and other sources recount wars between "the Scots" and the Northmen, but these are more probably wars between Sigurd Hlodvisson, Earl of Orkney, and the Mormaers, or Kings, of Moray.[8]

The Chronicle says that Kenneth founded a great monastery at Brechin.

Kenneth was killed in 995, the Annals of Ulster say "by deceit" and the Annals of Tigernach say "by his subjects". Some later sources, such as the Chronicle of Melrose, John of Fordun and Andrew of Wyntoun provide more details, accurately or not. The simplest account is that he was killed by his own men in Fettercairn, through the treachery of Finnguala (also called Fimberhele), daughter of Cuncar, Mormaer of Angus, in revenge for the killing of her only son.[9]

The Prophecy of Berchán adds little to our knowledge, except that it names Kenneth "the kinslayer", and states he died in Strathmore.[10]

Kenneth's son Malcolm II (Máel Coluim mac Cináeda) was later king of Alba. Kenneth may have had a second son, named either Dúngal or Gille Coemgáin.[11] Sources differ as to whether Boite mac Cináeda should be counted a son of Kenneth II or of Kenneth III (Cináed mac Duib).[12]


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Kenneth married.



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