The Clan Campbell Tartan is an extremely popular and easily recognisable tartan all around the world. It is in fact one of the most popular and widely worn tartans in the world. The tartan was worn by 'The Black Watch', a group that patrolled the highlands after the Jacobite rebellion of 1715. The Black Watch was made up of companies from different clans; one from Clan Fraser of Lovat, Clan Munro, Clan Grant and three from Clan Campbell. This tartan was adopted as the Black Watch's official tartan due to the number of Campbell's who were a part of The Black Watch. The Black Watch is the same sett as the Clan Campbell tartan, but dyed in darker shades. Many clan tartans are based on the Clan Campbell and Black Watch tartans and to this day it is still used by military units within the Commonwealth of Nations.
There is a strong possibility that many others wore the sett or something similar before the idea of distinctive clan tartans took hold. This tartan is worn by the present Duke of Argyll, who has approved the sett. The Campbell tartan is listed as "Tartan #1" on all of the major Scottish tartan registeries.
In Campbell Tartan, written by Alastair Campbell of Airds the younger in 1985, he lists the four approved Campbell tartans: the Campbell (also known as "Ancient Campbell" and "Campbell Ancient" in the marketplace), which is the same as the Black Watch; the Campbell of Cawdor; the Campbell of Beadalbane; and the Campbell of Loudoun. Of the Campbell of Argyll tartan, he writes, “This is not a pattern which has the Chief’s approval as an official Campbell tartan and purchasers should avoid it if they wish to be correct.” To be accurate, the past 7 Clan Campbell Chiefs have disavowed, some very strongly, the Campbell of Argyll tartan.