Attested: Ptolemy 2,3,11 Καρινοι or Καιρινοι
Where: The second to last of six tribes that Ptolemy listed as living in northern Scotland. Possibly in the far north towards Cape Wrath. This name is so similar to the Κερωνες and Κρεωνες that accidental duplication(s) may be suspected.
Name origin: ‘Highlanders’. From καρηνον ‘-head, mostly in plural, metaphorically of mountain peaks’.
Notes: Yet another Ptolemy name that looks like a rather banal Greek description of the lifestyle of people across a broad area. This name is often cited as Caereni, to fit the less preferred spelling and to resemble Irish cáera ‘sheep’ (which probably came from PIE *kap-ro- ‘male goat’) but there is no evidence for intensive sheep husbandry in northern Scotland in Roman times.
Last Edited: 29 June 2016