The Irish descent of the Scots has been revived, in the
last moments of its decay, and strenuously supported, by the
Rev. Mr. Whitaker (Hist. of Manchester, vol. i. p. 430, 431;
and Genuine History of the Britons asserted, etc., p.
154-293). Yet he acknowledges,
After these concessions, the remaining difference between Mr. Whitaker and his
adversaries is minute and obscure. The genuine history,
which he produces, of a Fergus, the cousin of Ossian, who
was transplanted (A.D. 324) from Ireland to Caledonia, is
built on a conjectural supplement to the Erse poetry, and
the feeble evidence of Richard of Cirencester, a monk of the
fourteenth century. The lively spirit of the learned and
ingenious antiquarian has tempted him to forget the nature
of a question which he so vehemently debates, and so
- That the Scots of
Ammianus Marcellinus (A.D. 340) were already settled in
Caledonia, and that the Roman authors do not afford any
hints of their emigration from another country.
- That all the accounts of such emigrations, which have been
asserted or received, by Irish bards, Scotch historians, or
English antiquaries (Buchanan, Camden, Usher, Stillingfleet,
etc.), are totally fabulous.
- That three of the Irish
tribes, which are mentioned by Ptolemy (A.D. 150), were of
- That a younger branch of
Caledonian princes, of the house of Fingal, acquired and
possessed the monarchy of Ireland.
The History Of The Decline and Fall
Of The Roman Empire—