At that time, people began to settle in permanent farms rather than following their herds.The small houses of these people have been found throughout the Western Isles; in particular, at Dail Mhor, Carloway.
They were descended from Somerled (Somhairle) Mac Gillibride, a Gall-Ghàidheil lord who had held the Hebrides and West Coast two hundred years earlier.
Control of Lewis itself was initially exercised by the Macleod clan, but after years of feuding and open warfare between and even within local clans, the lands of Clan Mac Leod were forfeited to the Scottish Crown in 1597 and were awarded by King James VI to a group of Lowland colonists known as the Fife adventurers in an attempt to anglicise the islands.
Lewis became part of the Kingdom of Mann and the Isles, an offshoot of Norway.
The Lewis chessmen, found on the island in 1831, date from the time of Viking rule.
The more striking great monuments of this period are the temples and communal burial cairns at places like Calanais.