Drummond yDNA Project

Drummond surname project testing ySTR and ySNP data.
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Is there a link between Maurice the Hungarian and the Drummond Family?

September 14, 2015.  Updated August 2, 2020 by Jim Drummond

Hello, forum!

Addressing the issue of Maurice the Hungarian and the claim by many he was a

scion of a royal Hungarian family and first of the Drummonds in Scotland. The info below

is what I present to anyone who has questions as to the family origin. And let the

person seeking information after being presented the enclosed information make

their own decision. 

This information found at Rootsweb is not correct.


In The Red Book of Menteith Volume 1, page 68 this can be found.


"The founder of the Drummond family was long believed to have been 'a Hungarian gentleman,' named MAURICE, who was said by Lord Strathallan, in his history of the family, to have piloted the vessel in which Edgar Atheling and his two sisters embarked for Hungary in 1066. They were driven, however, by a storm to land upon the north side of the Firth of Forth, near Queensferry, and took refuge at the Court of Malcolm Canmore, which was then held at Dunfermline. After the marriage of the Scottish king to the Princess Margaret, the Hungarian, as a reward for his skillful management of the vessel in the dangerous sea voyage, was rewarded by Malcolm with lands, offices, and a coat-of-arms; and called Drummond; 'and so it seems,' says Lord Strathallan, 'this Hungarian gentleman got his name, either from the office as being captaine, director, or admiral to Prince Edgar and his company-for Dromont or Dromend in divers nations was the name of a ship of a swift course, and the captaine thereof was called Droment or Dromerer-or otherwise the occasion of the name was from the tempest they endured at sea;' for Drummond, his lordship thinks, might be made up of the Greek word for water, and meant a hill, 'signifying high hills of waters; or Drummond, from drum, which in our ancient language is a height.' The myth was enlarged with additional and minute particulars by succeeding historians of the family. Mr. Malcolm exalts the Hungarian gentleman to the position of a royal prince of Hungary, and affirms that he was the son of George, a younger son of Andrew, King of Hungary. The late Mr. Henry Drummond, the banker, and M.P. for West Surrey, in his splendid work, entitled, 'Noble British Families,' adopts and improves upon the statements of the previous writers, and gives the Hungarian prince a royal pedigree in Hungary for many generations anterior to his coming to Scotland in 1066. All three agree in stating that the first lands given to that Hungarian by Malcolm Canmore lay in Dumbartonshire, and included the parish of Drummond in Lennox.”

This link also has pertinent information.


“Mr. Fraser, in his elaborate and most interesting work, entitled, 'The Red Book of Menteith,' has proved, by conclusive evidence, that these statements respecting the origin of the Drummond family are purely apocryphal. The word Drummond, Drymen, or Drummin, is used as a local name in several counties of Scotland, and is derived from the Celtic word druim, a ridge or knoll. The first person who can be proved to have borne the name was one Malcolm of Drummond, who, along with his brother, named Gilbert, witnessed the charters of Maldouen, third Earl of Lennox, from 1225 to 1270. But this Malcolm was simply a chamberlain to the Earl. Mr. Drummond states that he was made hereditary thane or seneschal of Lennox, which is quite unsupported by evidence; and he asserts that Malcolm's estates reached from the shores of the Gareloch, in Argyllshire, across the counties of Dumbarton and Stirling into Perthshire, which Mr. Fraser has shown to be an entire mistake. Instead of the Barony of Drymen, or Drummond, having been granted to a Prince Maurice by Malcolm Canmore in 1070, the lands belonged to the Crown previous to the year 1489, when for the first time they were let on lease to John, first Lord Drummond, and afterwards granted to him as feu-farm. The earliest charter to the family of any lands having a similar name was granted in 1362, by Robert Stewart of Scotland, Earl of Strathern, to Maurice of Drummond, of the dominical lands, or mains of Drommand and Tulychravin, in the earldom of Strathern. It is doubtful if he ever entered into possession of these lands; but it is clear that, whether he did so or not, they did not belong to the Drummond family previous to the grant of 1362, but were part of the estates of the Earl of Strathern, and that they are wholly distinct from the lands and lordship of Drummond afterwards acquired by John Drummond, who sat in Parliament 6th May, 1471, under the designation of Dominus de Stobhall, and, sixteen years later, was created a peer of Parliament by James III."

I have 23 pages from The Red Book of Menteith readily available to anyone who would like to read the information. It is in Word format. I have edited out the footnotes that can be found at the website along with the entire book.

Here is the link to The Red Book of Menteith, Volume 1


You can read online or download in different formats. 

I believe this book and the explanation of the origin of the Drummond Family is the definitive study

on the subject. I have been unable to find a study on the family origin done after the book's

publication in 1880.

Here is a link to a recent DNA study on Hungary’s Medieval Árpád Dynasty. 


Here is a quote from the above link,

“Prof. Kásler said that, based on their research, the remnants of the dynasty members belong to the R1a haplogroup, which means that the Árpáds are definitely of Eurasian origin, rather than Finno-Ugric.”

The Drummond haplogroup is R1b. The Drummond Family or Clan according to the DNA cannot have descended from the Arpad family of Hungary.

Now a caveat to my belief that Maurice was not the founder of our family or even intermarried into it.


The Hungarian government awards me a mortgage free, tax free 500-acre Duchy with a small castle, with servants and 

dancing girls in the Carpathian Mountains, with free cable, telephone and Internet, a lifetime pass to all Charlotte Roller 

Girl bouts, and said castle to have a chocolate factory and brewery, I could be persuaded to change my mind about 


Questions, comments, gripes all welcome,

Jim Drummond (jimdrummo@carolina.rr.com)