Antrim Family

Biography/History

The MacDonnells, Earls of Antrim, can trace their descent to Somerled, Lord of Argyle, in the 12th century. The families united in the marriage of John (or Ian) Mor MacDonnell to Margery Bisset, heir to MacEoin Bisset, Lord of the Glynns of Antrim in the 1390s. Through the various vicissitudes of financial mismanagement, wars, litigation over succession rights and political misfortunes the Antrims' land, once more than 330,000 acres, was reduced until the Antrim and Vane-Tempest estates, with the exception of the demesne lands, were sold to tenants in the early 20th century. At the beginning of the 21st century Viscount Dunluce (b.1967), son of the Earl of Antrim, resides in Glenarm Castle.