Ardchattan, Priory of

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A former valliscaulian house on the shores of Loch Etive, Argyllshire, Scotland, founded by Duncan Mackoull, or Macdougall, in 1230, and dedicated to St. Mary and St. John the Baptist. Its name was derived from the Gaelic, meaning "hill of Cattan," which probably refers to Cailtan, an early Scottish saint of the district. The priory's early history is obscure: it is known to have sworn fealty to Edward I in 1296, although Robert the Bruce held a parliament there in 1308. In 1506 James, the prior general of the order, commissioned the prior of Beauly to visit Ardchattan and to make such reform regulations as he should find necessary. By 1538 only six monks appear to have been left at Ardchattan, and in 1602 James VI dissolved the monastery and erected it into a temporal lordship for Alexander Campbell, its former prior. It is now a ruin.

Bibliography: Edinburgh Bannatyne Club, Origines parochiales Scotiae, ed. c. innes, 2 v. (Edinburgh 185055) v. 2.1. m. barrett, The Scottish Monasteries of Old (Edinburgh 1913). d. e. easson, Medieval Religious Houses: Scotland (London 1957) 70. s. cruden, Scottish Abbeys (Edinburgh 1960).

[l. macfarlane]