The concept of a "clan" is a uniquely Scottish one, referring to a large extended family that shares a common surname and heritage. The Scottish clan system has a rich and complex history that dates back to the Middle Ages when the country was divided into numerous small kingdoms and territories. The origin of the Clark Tartan is an interesting one. In the past, the name "Clark" did not refer to a family name but rather described someone who was part of a religious community or earned a living through writing - though not necessarily as a scrivener. This name was popular throughout the Lowlands, but prior to 1413, it referred to a man's occupation rather than his family. It wasn't until the 15th century that "Clark" became a common surname, with individuals such as Robert Clark, a shipmaster of Leith in 1446, establishing the name as a family one. The clans were originally formed as a means of protection and survival in this often violent and unpredictable landscape, with members banding together under a powerful chieftain to defend their land and people from outside threats.
Over time, the Scottish clans developed into powerful political and social entities, with their own traditions, customs, and hierarchies. The most powerful clans often held significant sway over the local government and economy and were respected and feared by their rivals. However, with the decline of the Scottish Highland way of life in the 18th and 19th centuries, many clans lost their influence and were forced to adapt to the changing times. One such clan is the Clark clan, which has its roots in the Scottish Borders region. The Clark clan is believed to have originated from a Norman knight who settled in Scotland in the 12th century and has since grown to include a large number of families across Scotland and the world. The Clark tartan, which is associated with the clan, features a pattern of red, green, and navy blue stripes on a white background, and is said to have been created in the early 19th century.