William III, Earl of Ross

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Uilleam (or William) III of Ross was the fourth successor of Ferchar mac in tSagairt, as Mormaer of Ross (1333/6-1370).

Uilleam came into his inheritance at a torrid time, his father Aodh dying at the Battle of Halidon Hill. Uilleam temporarily lost many of his lands. However, he returned from Norway in 1336 and regained them. Uilleam cultivated the friendship of the Stewarts, and was rewarded by being appointed Justiciar of Scotia. Uilleam's reign was marked by continued strife with his encroaching neighbour Raghnall Mac Ruaidhrí. In 1346, Uilleam killed Raghnall with eight of his men at the nunnery of Elcho.

Uilleam married Màiri, the daughter of Aonghas Óg MacDomhnaill. They had an heir, Uilleam, but he died in 1357. Uilleam's lands were forfeited by King David II in 1370. Uilleam died in 1372, and the Mormaerdom was given to his daughter Euphemia with her husband Sir Walter Leslie, thus ending the dynasty started a century and a half before by the great Ferchar. The dominions eventually passed to the MacDonald Lords of the Isles.


  • Roberts, John L., Lost Kingdoms: Celtic Scotland in the Middle Ages, (Edinburgh, 1997)

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Preceded by
Mormaer of Ross
Succeeded by
Euphemia m. Walter Leslie