King Macbeth of Scotland Timeline c1005-1057

Macbeth, King of Scotland

Born – c1005
Died – 15th August 1057
Father – Findláech MacRuaridh (d. 1020)
Mother – Donada (dates unknown)
Spouse – m. c1032 – Gruoch
Children – None; stepson – Lulach
King of Scotland – 1040 – 1057
PredecessorDuncan I – 1034 – 1040
Successor – Lulach – 1057 – 1058


1005 (around)
Macbeth was born Mac Bethad mac Findláech, son of Findláech MacRuaridh, Mormaer (chief) of Moray and Donada, daughter of Malcolm II.
1012 (around)
Mac Bethad began his education, it is likely that he was sent away to be educated by monks.
1020 (during)
Findláech, Mormaer of Moray, died. He was succeeded by his nephew Gille Comgain. Some sources suggest that GilleComgain and his brother Malcolm murdered Findláech.
1032 (during)
Macbeth became Mormaer of Moray after the death of Gille Comgain. Some sources indicate that Macbeth may have murdered Gille Comgain by locking him and his followers in a hall and setting it alight.
1032 (around)
Macbeth married Gille Comgain’s widow, Gruoch, granddaughter of King Kenneth III. He became stepfather to Gruoch’s son, Lulach.
1034 (25th November)
King Malcolm II died. He was succeeded by his grandson, Duncan.
1040 (during)
King Duncan sent troops north to take control of the Orkneys, they were defeated. At the same time Duncan led a force south to attack Northumbria. They were defeated at Durham. Duncan returned to Scotland and marched north to meet the force retreating from the Orkneys. Together they attacked the Orkneys again but were again defeated and fled south.
1040 (14th August)
Battle of Bothganowan
After forming an alliance with Thorfinn Sigurdsson, ruler of the Orkneys, Macbeth met King Duncan in battle near Elgin and Duncan was killed during the fighting. Duncan’s sons were too young to rule and Macbeth became King of Scotland.
1040 (late August)
King Duncan’s sons, Malcolm and Donald, were taken firstly to the Orkneys and later to England for their own safety.
1045 (during)
King Duncan’s father, Crinan, abbot of Dunkeld, led an army against Macbeth in favour of his grandson Malcolm. The two met near Dunkeld (which is close to Birnam Wood) and Crinan was killed during the fighting.
1050 (during)
Macbeth made a pilgrimage to Rome.
1052 (during)
Positions were given to Osbern and Hugh, two Norman knights that had been forced to leave the service of Edward the Confessor, after Earl Godwin demanded that the English king reduce his Norman retinue.
1054 (Summer)
An English army led by Siward, Earl of Northumbria, invaded Scotland. Some sources indicate that this invasion may have been to overthrow Macbeth and place Duncan’s son, Malcolm, on the throne of Scotland. Others point to the invasion being in favour of the son of the King of Strathclyde who was also called Malcolm.
1054 (27th July)
Battle of Dunsinnan
King Macbeth met the English force led by Siward, Earl of Northumbria. Macbeth was defeated and Duncan’s son, Malcolm became ruler of Perth and Fife.
1057 (15th August)
Battle of Lumphanan
Macbeth was killed in this battle between the forces of Duncan’s son, Malcolm Canmore and those of Macbeth. Some sources state that Macbeth was killed by Malcolm.
1057 (around 20th August)
Macbeth’s stepson, Lulach, became King of Scotland.


Published Aug 17, 2020 @ 12:35 pm – Updated – [last-modified]

Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2020). King Macbeth of Scotland c1005 – 1057 Last accessed [date]

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