Battle of Knock Mary
|Battle of Knock Mary|
|Part of the Scottish clan wars|
Drummond Castle, near to the site of where the battle began
|Clan Murray||Clan Drummond
|Commanders and leaders|
|Murray of Auchtertyre||William Drummond|
|Casualties and losses|
|120-160 in church||Unknown|
In 1511 (some sources say 1490) Murray of Auchtertyre stole cattle from Drummond of Strathearn, the purpose of this was to pay a debt demanded by the Abbot of Inchaffray. In revenge for this William Drummond, the son of the 1st Lord Drummond attacked the Murrays.
The clans met initially at Knock Mary, a hill on the south bank of the River Earn between the river and Drummond Castle. At first the Murrays were winning, but the battle was turned by the arrival of Campbells from Dunstaffnage under Duncan Campbell, McRobbies from Balloch and Faichneys from Argyllshire. Campbell had come to Strathearn to avenge the Murrays' recent murder of his two brothers-in-law and father-in-law, Drummond of Menie. Traditionally the dead from this battle were believed to be buried in the cairn of Rottenreoch, just north of Knock Mary (grid reference NN84252063, but this appears to be a Neolithic long cairn.
Having fled the battlefield, the Murrays crossed the River Earn and took refuge in the Kirk of Monzievaird, about a mile north of the river. Drummond was happy to let them go, but as Campbell returned home, an arrow fired from the church killed one of his men. In revenge the church was burned to the ground, killing those inside. Reports on casualties vary between 120 and 160 Murrays. This became known as the Massacre of Monzievaird.
- Site Record for Monzievaird, Old Parish Church And Ochtertyre Mausoleum, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. Grid reference is of the mausoleum built on the site of the kirk.
- ”The Drummonds” by Libby Urquhart. Published by Lang Syne Publishers Ltd. 1997. ISBN 1-85217-041-7.
- Shearer, John (1881), Antiquities of Strathhearn, pp. 58–9, ISBN 978-0-554-57176-8 Link and page number of BiblioBazaar reprint (2008)
- Site Record for Rottenreoch, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland