Formerly the term was held to embrace not only all the islands off the Scottish western coast, including the islands in the Firth of Clyde, but also the peninsula of Kintyre, the Isle of Man and the Isle of Rathlin, off the coast of Antrim.
While southern Scotland was thus English and Cymric, the north, from Cape Wrath to Lochaber, in the west, and to the Firth of Tay, on the east, was Pictland; and the vernacular spoken there was the Gaelic. The west, south of Lochaber to the Mull of Kintyre, with the isles of Bute, Islay, Arran and Jura, was the realm of the Dalriadic kings, Scots from Ireland (503): here, too, Gaelic was spoken, as among the " Southern Picts " of the kingdom of Galloway.
761), was victorious while in his prime, and then consolidated Pictland; but (802-83'9) the Scandinavian sea-rovers began to hold large territories in Scotland,weakened the Picts, and made easy their conquest by Kenneth MacAlpine of Kintyre, the king of the Dalriad Scots of Argyll.
His mother was Ineen Dubh, daughter of James MacDonnell of Kintyre; his sister was the second wife of Hugh O'Neill, 2nd earl of Tyrone.
The circumstances which enabled the Scots to succeed in occupying Kintyre and Islay cannot now be ascertained.
Down), which forms the subject of a celebrated romance, Congal was slain and the power of the settlement in Kintyre weakened for a considerable period.