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a Scottish clan is a kinship group and the system plays a big role in culture and traditions. The roots are in time of the Celtic tribal system. In the beginning the clans were tied to specific areas which created a bond to protect it from being invaded or stolen by other groups. The clans were led by a Clan Chief whose family lived in an ancestral castle. The chief controlled just about every part of life of the clan and was the main political system of Scotland. Membership passes down through the male side of the family. It is centered around a man's last name so when a woman marries she becomes part of her husband's clan. This paid off in times of trouble because all families got involved in protecting the clan. I am a modern Clan Chief of my local Celtic Society and in my highlands dress I wear items to show that I am a Chief. How a person is dressed tells the status within the clan, so a visitor knows exactly who is who within the clan.

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Q: Why were clan chiefs held in such high respect?
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