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Clan Cunningham

Clan Cunningham is a Scottish chiefly family


On December 18, 2013, Sir John Christopher Cunningham, Baronet of Corsehill, became the 16th Lord Kilmaurs when he was recognised as the Cunningham chief by the Lyon Court, after the clan had been considered armigerous for over 200 years. <ref>,%20John%20Christopher%20Foggo%20Montgomery%20-%20Granting%20Arms%20and%20with%20NOTE%20-%20web%202.pdf</ref>


This is a territorial name found in Ayrshire. <ref>George Way of of Plean and Romilly Squire, Scottish Clan and Family Encyclopedia, 377 </ref> It is likely that it derives from 'cuinneag' - meaning 'milk pail' and the Saxon 'ham' -meaning 'village'. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref> The first holder of the name was Warnebald, or perhaps his son, Robertus, who received a grant of the lands of Cunningham sometime between 1160 and 1180.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref> An origin myth also states that Malcolm, son of Friskin obtained the lands of Cunningham from Malcolm III after sheltering him in a barn and covering him with hay. This is said to give rise to the shake fork in the family arms, but this is in fact an allusion to the office of Master of the King's Stables.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref>

Another origin legend is that the Cunninghams were great allies of the Comyns, whose shield bore sheaves of corn.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref> When the Comyns were defeated by the Bruces, the Cunninghams adopted the shake fork as a reference to their former allies. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref>

Middle Ages

It is certain that the Cunninghams were settled in their lands of Kilmaurs by the end of the thirteenth century.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377</ref> Hervy de Cunningham, son of the Laird of Kilmaurs, fought for Alexander III at the Battle of Largs in 1263. The following year he received from that king a charter confirming all his lands. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 377 </ref>

Later History


James Cunningham, Earl of Glencairn (1749-91) was a patron of Patron of Robert Burns. <ref>,_14th_Earl_of_Glencairn</ref>