Kenneth I (MacAlpin) of Scotland

Cinaed (MacAlpin) of Scotland (abt. 0810 - 0858)

Privacy Level: Open (White)
Cinaed (Kenneth I) "Cináed mac Ailpín, King of Picts and Scots" of Scotland formerly MacAlpin
Born about in Scotlandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in Cinnbelachoir, Fortevoit, Perth, Scotlandmap
Profile last modified | Created 11 May 2012 | Last significant change: 14 Nov 2018
16:34: Michael Thomas edited the Biography for Cinaed (MacAlpin) of Scotland (abt.0810-0858). [Thank Michael for this]
This page has been accessed 9,125 times.

Categories: Irish History, Kingdom of Dál Riata | Argyll, Scotland | Perthshire, Scotland | Scottish Nobility | Siol Alpin | House of Alpin.



House of Alpin tartan.
Kenneth I (MacAlpin) of Scotland is a member of House of Alpin.
Join: Scottish Clans Project
Discuss: scottish_clans
British Aristocracy
Kenneth I (MacAlpin) of Scotland was a member of aristocracy in the British Isles.
Join: British Royals and Aristocrats Project
Discuss: british_aristo

Preceded by
King of the Picts
abt 848 - 13 February 858
Succeeded by
Donald I


King of Dalriada ( 841 - 844)
King of the Picts ( 844) as Kenneth III
King of Scots ( 844 - 858)

This profile relates to Kenneth MacAlpin (Cináed mac Ailpín), sometimes noticed as "Kenneth, the Hardy".


Kenneth MacAlpin is generally regarded as the founder of medieval Scotland. He was the son of Alpin mac Eochaid (Alpin the son of Achay in John of Fordun). The name of his mother is not provided in source although there is mention that she may have been a daughter of Achalas, King of Argyllshire, or a Pictish princess. His father is thought to have been killed in 831, in battle with the Picts after a reign of three years after which he was beheaded.

There is considerable debate on his origins and Kenneth's origins are unproven, as are his ties, if any, to previous kings of the Picts or Dál Riata. If this an area of interest there is a discussion on the usefulness of source material in Skene's Work: Chronicles of the Picts, chronicles of the Scots, and other early memorials of Scottish history from page cxxiii. [1] Robertson also includes a discussion on the methods of electing a King for both Kingdoms of relevance. [2]

There is little certainty provided in source material regarding his early life and much of the source work is conflicting. The Norwegian invasions and raiding, Vikings, was prevalent across all of northern Scotland and the western Isles. The old Kingdom of Dalriadan Scots had been near destroyed and was isolated from its origin in Ireland. Many had fled to Galloway and it is thought that it was to Galloway that Alpin, the last king of Scottish Dalriada had fled. [3]

Kenneth may have assumed the throne of Dalriata (Dalriete regnum) two years before taking the throne of the Picts (Pictaviam) although there is doubt. The opportunity, to become King of the Picts, arose from the defeat of the Picts, by the Norwegain forces in 839 where "the death of king Uen, son of Óengus of Fortriu, his brother Bran, Áed mac Boanta, and others almost innumerable."

There is a notice of what became known, in legend, as MacAlpine's treason where "At a banquet at Scone, Kenneth murdered the seven Earls of the Scot's kingdom of Dalriada, who might have lead opposition to his claim to be King of Scots and Picts, marking what was hoped to be the end of the conflict. " Some sources suggest it was the Pictish Earls that were killed. There is no certainty of the event, although an event is plausible. What is known that, at some point, around 844, likely over a period, he became the first King of the joint Kingdoms.

The 11th century Synchronisms of Flann Mainistreach name (in order) "Cinaet mac Ailpin…Domnall mac Ailpin, Custantin mac Cinaeta, (Aedh mac Cinaedha), Girg mac Dungaile, Domnall Dasachtach (mac Custantin)" as Scottish kings, dated to the 9th and 10th centuries, adding that "Kenneth son of Alpin…was the first king who possessed the kingdom of Scone, of the Gael. In doing this he created a tradition in that the seat of the Kings of Scotland is moved to Scone, once the ancient heartland of the Kingdom of the Picts. The throne of the King of Scotland based on a slab of stone which Scottish myth suggests was carried by the Celtic tribes since their origins in Spain, brought to Tara in Ireland, built into the wall of Dunstaffnage Castle and then brought to Scone.

MacAlpin created his capital at Forteviot (mod. Scone), in Pictish territory; then moved his religious centre to Dunkeld, on the River Tay, in present-day Perthshire. In 849 he transferred relics of Columba, which may have included the Monymusk Reliquary, transferred from Iona to Dunkeld, likely to protect them from Norwegian raids.

He ruled for 16 years, according to most. The Chronicle of the Kings of Alba reports that he invaded Saxonia six times, captured Melrose and burnt Dunbar, and also that Vikings laid waste to Pictland, reaching far into the interior. His time on the throne was certainly turbulent. The Britons of Strath Clyde burnt Dunblane; the Norwegians and Danes carried their burnt Dunkeld in Atholl, and attacked Cluny in Stormont. According to some sources his major protagonist was Ragnar Lodbroc.

The Annals of Ulster record the death in 858 of "Cinaed son of Ailpín king of the Picts". [4] The 10th century Pictish Chronicle Cronica de Origine Antiquorum Pictorum suggests he died in the Ides of February, on the third day of the week; and the Ides of February fell on a Tuesday, in the year 860. [5] He died of a "tumour" at "Forteviet", likely Scone and was buried at Iona at the church of St. Columba.

He was succeeded by his brother, Donald.


The name of his wife is not provided in source material. They had four children:

  • Constantine.
  • Aedh.
  • A daughter. Her parentage and marriage are confirmed by the 10th century Pictish Chronicle Cronica de Origine Antiquorum Pictorum which records that "Eochodius…filius Run regis Britannorum, nepos Cinadei ex filia" succeeded King Aedh and ruled for 11 years. She married Run Macarthagail (Rhun ab Arthgal), King of Strathclyde.


See also:

  • Caledonia : or, a historical and topographical account of North Britain, from the most ancient to the present times with a dictionary of places chorographical & philological; Chalmers; Vol. 1; see pages from 374
  • Chronicles of the Picts, chronicles of the Scots, and other early memorials of Scottish history; Skene; available at
  • Kenneth MacAlpin on Foundation for Medieval Genealogy
  • Scotland under her early kings; a history of the kingdom to the close of the thirteenth century; Robertson, Vol. 1.; available at
  • Annals of Scotland


Kenneth (Cinaed) MacAlpin of the Cenel nGabráin; son of Alpín;

He was King the Picts c. 843–858; though it is generally thought that he was not a king in Dál Riata [6]

Death: 858 and "Because Cináed with many troops lives no longer there is weeping in every house; there is no king of his worth under heaven as far as the borders of Rome." [7]


  1. Chronicles of the Picts, chronicles of the Scots, and other early memorials of Scottish history; page cxxiii
  2. Scotland under her early kings; from page 24
  3. Chronicles of the Picts and Scots; page cxciv
  4. Cinaed son of Ailpín, king of the Picts, and Ethelwulf, king of the Saxons, died. Celt : The Annals of Ulster U858.2 corpus of electronic texts edition
  5. Chronicles of the Picts and Scots; page clxxxviii
  6. Wikipedia : List of kings of Dál Riata
  7. Cináed son of Alpín, king of the Picts, died. It was of him that the quatrain was said: Celt : Fragmentary Annals of Ireland : Annal FA 285 corpus of electronic texts edition
  • ...Cináed son of Alpín son of Eochaid son of Áed Find son of Domangart son of Domnall Brecc son of Eochaid Buide son of Áedán son of Gabrán son of Domangart son of Fergus Mór ... Celt : Genealogies from Rawlinson B 502: 1696 Genelach Ríg n-Alban

This person was created through the import of DR fam 9.ged on 14 September 2010. The following data was included in the gedcom.

More Genealogy Tools

Sponsored Search

Searching for someone else?
First: Last:

DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Kenneth I by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. Y-chromosome DNA test-takers in his direct paternal line on WikiTree:

Have you taken a DNA test for genealogy? If so, login to add it. If not, see our friends at Ancestry DNA.

Images: 2
Kenneth MacAlpin
Kenneth MacAlpin

Kenneth I (MacAlpin) of Scotland
Kenneth I (MacAlpin) of Scotland


On 1 Oct 2018 at 00:08 GMT Valerie Willis wrote:

MacAlpin-11 and UNKNOWN-10326 appear to represent the same person because: these two profiles MUST be merged as the tail end of a parallel upload of Dal Riata Kings. A SEPARATE profile (or series of profiles) should be created for the Pictish Kings.

On 11 Jun 2018 at 14:56 GMT Al Scott wrote:

I agree with your comment below Doug as far as 2 Mixed Individuals, i also notice some one has Listed Wikipedia for sources,

i dont think Wikipedia should ever be used for Geaneology as any one can edit the info and wrong info can therefore be replicated.

On 5 Jun 2018 at 19:50 GMT Al Scott wrote:

Read on From Page 30 The Dalriada Lineage should go back to Naill of Nine Hostages, The Lineage is in this Book Below that also mentions the Origins of many Surnames such as Gallagher, McLaughlin and many others. Book below should be consulted for Kenneth's Ancestry See Kenneth page 39

On 26 Apr 2018 at 14:10 GMT Lance Osbourn wrote:

I have discovered I have a unique genealogy I'm trying to figure out how to add to my profile the tartans of the different Clans my genealogy is linked to, thanks

On 12 Nov 2017 at 23:54 GMT Al Scott wrote:

See Page 32 Here

I Have a YDNA Match of the McAlpin Surname who has the Naill of Nine Hostages badge assigned to him by FTDNA His Ysearch Id is 59jh6 my Ysearch id is JADZH Line should go back to Naill of Nine Hostages once there Naill's Ancestry can be Traced back to Noah

Read Antiquity of the Name of Scott by Martin Bowen Scott,%20Articles,%20etc./Antiquity%20of%20the%20Name%20Scott.pdf

or Here

On 22 Apr 2017 at 06:38 GMT Sarah (Murtaugh) Heiney wrote:

UNKNOWN-34299 and MacAlpin-11 appear to represent the same person because: Clear duplicate

On 1 Oct 2016 at 00:25 GMT C (Sälgö) S wrote:


On 7 Jan 2016 at 14:09 GMT RJ Horace wrote:

Prince Gregor seems to have mutated into King Kenneth

On 11 Nov 2015 at 12:47 GMT Marty (Lenover) Acks wrote:

Lots of text copied from WIkipedia here. Bio should be changed to follow WIkitree standards to not do that.

On 19 Jun 2015 at 04:06 GMT Marty (Lenover) Acks wrote:

MacAlpin-61 and MacAlpin-12 appear to represent the same person because: Same person, same father, same son

more comments

Kenneth I is 32 degrees from Sharon Caldwell, 30 degrees from Burl Ives and 25 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

M  >  MacAlpin  |  O  >  of Scotland  >  Cinaed (MacAlpin) of Scotland