S. of Donald II; king of Scots 943–54; d. Fetteresso, 954; bur. Iona(?).
Malcolm succeeded to the Scottish kingship when his long-reigning cousin Constantine II retired to St Andrews in 943. The struggles between the West Saxons and Scots for overlordship of Bernicia, and Wessex and Dublin for control of Scandinavian York, dominated his reign. Edmund of Wessex acknowledged Malcolm's overlordship of Strathclyde–Cumbria in return for defending northern England from back-door Viking attack (945), and Malcolm's plunder of the Bernicians as far south as the Tees in 949 was connected with Olaf Sihtricsson's attempt to regain York from Erik Bloodaxe. He was careful not to upset the alternating system of succession in Scotland, so appointed Constantine II's son Indulf as sub-king of Strathclyde and tanist (heir), who thus became his successor. Malcolm was slain by the men of Moray at Fetteresso (south of Aberdeen).
Subjects: British History.