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chosen for the site of a town, at a very remote pe-
riod; accordingly Dundee is of great, but unknown,
antiquity, and the earliest accounts respecting it arc
involved in fable and obscurity. The first name un- ]
der which it appears in any credible history is that
of Alec, or Ail-lec— pleasant, or beautiful. This
name is of Gaelic origin, and is still retained by those
in the Highlands of Scotland who have any inter-
course with the place. It was only sometime after,
when the Latin language was introduced and used
in their writings by those who had received their
education abroad, that the custom prevailed of giv-
ing to the names of towns, rivers, and mountains,
the Latin termination. This, therefore, was the
Alectum in the annals of Boethius, — who was a na-
tive of the town, and flourished in 1490.
The name Dundee is spelt in old writings and
charters, Donde, Dondie ; and in the charter given
by Queen Mary, the word Donum Dei is introdu-
ced,. — first given in 1 180 by David Earl of Hunting-
don. In Buchanan's history of Scotland, the name
Taodunum appears, whence Duntay or Duntai.
Various derivations and significations have been
given to these words. The town is supposed to
have received the name of Donum Dei, or its ab-
reviations, towards the end of the twelfth century,
from the circumstance of David Earl of Hunting-
don, — the favourite brother of King William I. of
Scotland, surnamed the Lion, — having safely land-
ed in its sheltered harbour, after a dreadful storm,
in which he had suffered a partial shipwreck, on his
return from the Holy Land, whither, with five hun-
dred of his countrymen, he had accompanied Rich-

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