Comann Eachdraichd Uig

1613 - Beiriseigh: Seasamh Dheireannach Nèill MhicLeòid – Berisay: Neil Macleod’s Last Stand

Neil Macleod, illegitimate son of the last Macleod clan chief of Lewis, is credited with driving out the Fife Adventurers, sent by King James VI to colonise and ‘civilise the most barbarous Isle of Lewis’, and to take over the herring fisheries.

By subterfuge and piracy, he eluded the pro-monarchist Mackenzies for three years, holed up with forty of his men on the island of Berisay. He was eventually betrayed by his own kinsmen and hanged in Edinburgh in April 1613.