"MacLeod," for your information, means "Son of Ugly."


Unknown said...

Son of Ugly is about equal to son of the cripple, which we MacLennans got. Progeny of a deliberately crippled newborn at the hands of enemies - not the most heroic origin story for a clan. :)

Grim said...

Names that track to Viking origin are often insulting, although insult was probably not always the point. The patronymics often weren't adequate to distinguish this Olaf Einarsson from that one, so people fell back on "by-names" that usually track to noticeable physical features. "Olaf Einarsson, the Ugly," or "Olaf the Short," or "Olaf the Bald" -- these are much more descriptive names. :)

You see that in other cultures too, of course (e.g., "Charles the Bald"; "Duncan the Fat").

Anonymous said...

"Son of Ugly": Well, the nickname for the clan tartan isn't Loud MacLeod for nothing.