'We had near us, on the west, the high and wild mountains of the Isle of Rum on the north, the fine mountains of the Isle of Sky, with their tops covered with snow. The sea rolled its high billows, and broke against the rocks whilst innumerable flights of seagulls, penguins, and other birds inhabiting the icy seas, were swimming, plunging, and flying' - Necker de Saussure Voyage to the Hebrides, 1807 This is the first book ever to be written on the collective history of the little group of islands between Ardnamurchan and Skye. As some of the best known Hebridean islands, Canna, Rum, Eigg and Muck have a long and varied history, but are also amongst the least documented. Rum was the playground of the Macruari kings of the Northern Hebrides; Eigg was the island meeting point where their descendants conceded primacy to the Islay Macdonalds, while Muck and Canna were the property of Iona, spiritual nerve centre of the west. With reference to both the extensive material remains on the islands and rare original source material, this book is a dynamic and wideranging account of the Small Isles and their history.