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Payson Scottish Festival

Scottish clans are kinship organizations. Historically, clans were sophisticated institutions which defined the political landscape of medieval Scotland. Clans were headed by chiefs and bonded by a common territory, and were as varied as the diverse geography of Scotland. They were integral to the feudal society of the Scottish Highlands and Islands, and were also present throughout the Lowlands, particularly in the Borders region. The word “clan” derives from the Gaelic clann, literally meaning children, showing how kinship (both real and fictional) was key to the understanding of Gaelic society. Rather than being limited to strict blood relation as we might today view it, however, clan kinship extended to include the whole community who were viewed as an extended family. The members of historical clans were closely bonded by shared territory, resources, and customs.  

Today, clans are modern social institutions with an interest in preserving history and traditions, exploring genealogy, and promoting global kinship ties. Clans have a mission of promoting a sense of shared history and identity among the Scottish diaspora. Like highland games, they provide the opportunity to engage with heritage and to forge connections in a modern world. Clans are also structured by the Court of the Lord Lyon in Scotland.

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Jul 12 - 13 2024


5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

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