Collins Scottish Clan & Family Encyclopedia

The most distinctive feature of Scotland’s history, nationally and internationally, is that of clanship. Although the clans are no longer the social force they once were, the continuing interest in them is testimony to the hold on the imagination that the sense of clan identity still has for very many people worldwide.

However, the desire for knowledge about the great clans and families of Scotland frequently outstrips the ability of published works to satisfy it. The Collins Scottish Clan & Family Encyclopedia will do much to redress this situation. Beautifully illustrated throughout, and featuring many specially commissioned illustrations, this is the most comprehensive and authoritative work yet published on the subject. It provides the histories and heraldic details of over 300 of Scotland’s best-known and most famous clans and families, as well as highly informative essays on key elements of clan life and society including:

· the history and development of the clan system

· the law of the clan

· tartan and Highland dress

· heraldry

In addition, an extensive collection of appendices draws together a wide range of information, which has never before appeared in a single volume.

The Collins Scottish Clan & Family Encyclopedia is the work of a team of renowned specialists. In addition to the team’s contributions, it has been compiled and edited by George Way of Plean and Romilly Squire, respectively the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of the Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs. This is the only book to have received the imprimatur of this important and influential organization.

The Collins Scottish Clan & Family Encyclopedia is the definitive single-volume reference on the Scottish clans and will appeal to everyone of Scottish ancestry throughout the world.



Quarterly, 1st & 4th, Argent, a lion rampant Azure, armed and langued Gules, within a double tressureflory counterfiory of the Second (Lyon); 2nd & 3rd, Ermine, three bows stringed paleways Proper (Bowes); en surtout an inescutcheon Azure, thereon a rose Argent, barbed Vert and seeded Or, ensigned with the Imperial Crown Proper, within a double tressureflory counterfiory of the Second, the said inescutcheon ensigned with an Earl’s coronet Proper (the said honourable augmentation being limited to the Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne and to the heirs succeeding him in his said Earldom)


In te domine speravi (In Thee 0 Lord have I put my trust)


Dexter, a unicorn Argent, armed, maned and unguled Or; sinister, a lion rampant parted per fess Or and Gules


Within a garland of bay leaves, a lady from the middle richly attired, holding in her dexter hand a thistle all Proper (in allusion to the alliance of Sir John Lyon with Princess Jean, daughter of King Robert II


Azure, a St Andrew’s Cross Argent in the hoist and of two tracts Argent and Azure, upon which is depicted the Crest in the first compartment, the 1st Badge in the second compartment, and the 2nd Badge in the third compartment, along with the Motto ‘In te domine speravi’ in letters Or upon two transverse bands Gules


1st, a lady’s head and shoulders aifrontee within a chaplet from which issues trefoils, all Proper 2nd, within a chaplet a square tower Proper, masoned Sable, windows and port Azure


Although Sir lain Moncreiffe of that ~ Ilk, perhaps the greatest Scottish herald and genealogist of this century, believed that this family were of Celtic origin and descended from a younger son of the Lamonts, the generally accepted view is that they descend from a French family called de Leon, who came north with Edgar, son of Malcolm II, at the end of the eleventh century to fight against his uncle, Donald Bane, the usurper of the throne. Edgar was triumphant, and de Leon received lands in Perthshire, which were later called Glen Lyon. Roger de Leonne witnessed a charter of Edgar to the Abbey at Dunfermline in 1105. In 1372 Robert II granted to Sir John Lyon, called the White Lyon because of his fair complexion, the thanage of Glamis. Five years later he became Chamberlain of Scotland, and his prominence was such that he was considered fit to marry the king’s daughter, Princess Jean, who brought with her not only illustrious lineage, but also the lands of Tannadice on the River Esk. He was later also granted the barony of Kinghorne. He was killed during a quarrel with Sir James Lindsay of Crawford, near Menmuir in Angus. The family has descended in a direct line from the White Lion and Princess Jean to the present day, and their crest alludes to this. His only son, another John, was his successor, and he strengthened the royal ties by marrying a granddaughter of Robert II. Sir John’s son, Patrick, was created Lord Glamis in 1445 and thereafter became a Privy Councilor and Master of the Royal Household. He had earlier discovered that being a courtier was not always an easy life, when he was one of those sent to England as a hostage in 1424 for the ransom of James I. John, the sixth Lord Glamis, was, according to tradition, a quarrelsome man with a quick temper. He married Janet Douglas, granddaughter of the famous Archibald ‘Bell the Cat’, and in the years following his death she suffered terribly for the hatred which James V bore to all of her name. Lady Glamis was accused on trumped-up charges of witchcraft and, despite speaking boldly in her own defence, her doom was preordained. She was burned at the stake on the castle hill at Edinburgh on 3 December 1540. Her death was much lamented, as she was ‘in the prime of her years, of a singular beauty, and suffering all, though a woman, with a man-like courage, all men conceiving that it was not this but the hatred which the King carried to her brothers’. Her young son was also found guilty of conspiracy and sentenced to death, the sentence to be carried out when he had come of age. He was fortunate that he did not do so until after the king’s death, when he was released. The king took possession of Glamis and plundered it. The eighth Lord Glamis renounced his allegiance to Mary, Queen of Scots and served under the Regents Moray and Lennox. He was made Chancellor of Scotland and Keeper of the Great Seal for life, and his son, the ninth Lord, was captain of the Royal Guard and one of James VI’s Privy Councilors. In 1606 he was created Earl of Kinghorne, Viscount Lyon and Baron Glamis. His son, the second Earl, was a close personal friend of the Marquess of Montrose and was with him when he subscribed to the National Covenant in 1638. He accompanied Montrose on his early campaigns in defence of the Covenant, but despite his great affection for the Marquess, he could not support him when he broke with the Scots Parliament to fight for Charles I. Lyon almost ruined his estates in supporting the Army of the Covenant against his friend. In 1677 the third Earl of Kinghorne obtained a new patent of nobility, being styled thereafter Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne Viscount Lyon, Baron Glamis, Tannadyce, Sidlaw and Strathdichtie. He paid off the debts he inherited from his father by skilful management of the estates and was later able to alter and enlarge the Castle of Glamis. John, his son, although a member of the Privy Council, opposed the Treaty of Union of 1707. His son was a Jacobite who fought in the rising of 1715 at the Battle of Sheriffmuir in Tullibardine’s regiment. He died defending his regiment’s colours. In 1716 James, the ‘Old Pretender’, son of James VII, was entertained at Glamis. Thirty years later another king’s son, but a much less welcome one, the Duke of Cumberland, stopped at the castle on his march north to Culloden. It is said that after he left the bed that he had used was dismantled. Among the Jacobite relics now preserved at Glamis are a sword and watch belonging to James VIII, the ‘Old Pretender’, and an intriguing tartan coat worn by him. The youngest daughter of the fourteenth Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne is HM Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.

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