Papers of and relating to Ewan MacLachlan

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

GB 231 MS 0499 Manuscript volume, entitled Transcription of the Dean of Lismore's manuscript, by Ewen MacLachlan, a native of Lochaber. Another by him is in the Advocate's Library. This one belongs to the Rev. J. Walker MacIntyre, minister of Kilmonivaig. The Dean of Lismore's manuscript, a collection of poems in Scottish and Irish Gaelic dating from the beginning of the Christian era to the 16th century, was compiled by Rev. James MacGregor, Dean of Lismore between 1512 and 1526. Ewen MacLaclan's transcript contains an Account of Dean MacGregor's Manuscript and a list of its contents.

GB 231 MS 2145 A small collection of correspondence and other papers relating to Ewen MacLachlan's life and work, 19th c - 20th c. The collection was accumulated by P.J. Anderson, Librarian, University of Aberdeen, whilst engaged in research for Ewen MacLachlan: Librarian to the University and King's College, Aberdeen, 1800 - 1818, Aberdeen University Library Bulletin, 18 (Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press, 1918). It includes general correspondence re. MacLachlan's life and work; correspondence with James Craigie of the Sandeman Library, Perth, and others re. the manuscript of Ewen MacLachlan's Gaelic version of Homer's Iliad, c 1916 - 1925; a Gaelic manuscript, acquired by Donald Masson in 1895, containing 2 poems attributed to William English, dated 1823; a Gaelic manuscript, acquired by Rev. P.E. Kavanagh in 1889 and by Donald Masson in 1901, entitled Aig so Clar an leabhair, containing a list of the kings of Ireland, n.d.; and a manuscript copy of Gaelic and English versions of Carn-na-cuimhne, a Braemar Jacobite song, which was first translated into English by Ewen MacLachlan, n.d.. The collection has not been fully listed and details of provenance have yet to be firmly established.

GB 231 MS 3274 A small collection of correspondence of, and relating to Ewen MacLachlan, c 1809 - c 1841. Most of MacLachlan's own correspondence is written in English to his brother, Hugh MacLachlan, of Green Castle, Jamaica, though there is also one letter, in Gaelic, to his father, Donald MacLachlan, of Fort William, 1809 - 1821. Letters received by him include reports of progress on the compilation of the Gaelic Dictionary, comprising copies of correspondence between Mr MacLeod and Mr Gordon, 1814 - 1817; and a testimonial from Dr John Hunter, Professor of Humanity, and Dr Thomas Jackson, Professor of Natural Philosophy, University of St Andrews, regarding his application for employment with Inverness Academy, 25 Apr 1820. Related correspondence includes a letter from Mr Ewing, of Aberdeen, to Hugh MacLachlan, of Green Castle, Jamaica, regarding Ewen MacLachlan's illness, 16 Jul 1822; and a letter from Ewen MacLachlan's sister, Mary M. MacLachlan, of Balachullish, Fort William, to her nephew, Alexander McInnes, schoolmaster, of Balachullish, Fort William, granting him possession of Ewen MacLachlan's manuscripts, including the first 7 books of Homer's Iliad, and urging him to publish them at the soonest opportunity, 28 May 1841. There are also excerpts, ? in Ewen MacLachlan's hand, in Gaelic, from an unidentified work, n.d.; and copies of his death notices and obituaries from the Aberdeen Journal, Apr 1922.

Administrative / Biographical History

Ewen MacLachlan was librarian to the University and King's College, Aberdeen from 1800 - 1818, and head of the Grammar School from 1819 until his death in 1822. A distinguished Gaelic scholar and poet, he was appointed by the Highland Society of Scotland to assist Rev. John MacLeod, DD (1757 - 1841) in the compilation of the Gaelic Dictionary, published in 1828. Publications include Attempts in Verse (Aberdeen, 1807); Metrical Effusions (Aberdeen, 1816); and his Gaelic translation of parts of Homer's Iliad, which appeared in Patrick MacFarlane's Choice Collection of Gaelic Poems (Edinburgh: Stewart, 1813)

For further details see Dictionary of National Biography; P.J. Anderson, Ewen MacLachlan: Librarian to the University and King's College, Aberdeen, 1800 - 1818, Aberdeen University Library Bulletin, 18 (Aberdeen: Aberdeen University Press, 1918.

Arrangement

Listing in process.

Conditions Governing Access

Open, subject to signature accepting conditions of use at reader registration sheet

Acquisition Information

GB 231 MS 0499 date of deposit in the University not recorded. GB 231 MS 0499 date of deposit in the University not recorded. GB 231 MS 2145 date of deposit in the University not recorded. GB 231 MS 2145 date of deposit in the University not recorded. GB 231 MS 3274 deposited in the University in 1948, by Elizabeth R. Mackay, daughter of Rev. Thomas MacKay, LLD, Aberdeen, 1942. The papers were removed on temporary loan in the 1960s and returned by Professor Derick S. Thomson, of Glasgow, in Jul 1987.

Other Finding Aids

Very brief collection level description available on Aberdeen University Library Catalogue, accessible online http://www.abdn.ac.uk/diss/library/

Alternative Form Available

No copies known

Conditions Governing Use

Subject to the condition of the original, copies may be supplied for private research use only on receipt of a signed undertaking to comply with current copyright legislation.

Permission to make any published use of material from the collection must be sought in advance from the Head of Special Libraries and Archives (e-mail: speclib@abdn.ac.uk) and, where appropriate, from the copyright owner. Where possible, assistance will be given in identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Appraisal Information

This material has been appraised in line with normal procedures

Accruals

No accruals expected

Related Material

No related material identified in this repository

Bibliography

Ewen MacLachlan's letters (GB 231 MS 3274) were edited by Professor D. S. Thomson in Scottish Gaelic Studies, 11 (1966), 202-236

Additional Information

This material is original