Procedure: commission for the trial of John Murdoch
Commission for trial of John Murdoch

The estates of parliament now convened, having taken into their consideration the supplication given in to them by the presbytery of Ayr, making mention that where they being very aware of the heinous provocation against God in the land, and especially the prevalence of the vile sin of adultery, for which, amongst many other, the Lord's anger is not turned away but his hand is stretched out still; and hearing to their great joy that the said estates of parliament, having taken the same into their consideration, were pleased to interpose the authority of the said estates of parliament for suppressing that sin by declaring it in their late act to be capital, and they finding one John Murdoch in their bounds, sometimes in the parish of Ochiltree, lapsed four times in the aforesaid sin, for which he has been excommunicated and has lain under the said censure hardened in sin these two years, who now being apprehended, is in prison in the tolbooth of Ayr; and therefore humbly desiring the said estates of parliament to issue out a warrant and commission to such persons as they should think fitting for his trial and punishment according to his demerits, as at more length is contained in the said supplication. Which being taken into consideration by the said estates of parliament, they have given and granted and by this act give and grant full power and commission to Sir [...] Cunningham of Cunninghamhead, Sir Hugh Campbell of Cessnock, [...] Fullarton of that ilk, [...] Chalmers of Gadgirth, [...] of Gilmilnscroft, [...], sheriff depute of Ayr, with the magistrates of the said burgh of Ayr (or to any three of the said gentlemen, with one of the said magistrates, as their quorum) with power to them to create all members of court requisite, and to call before them the said John Murdoch and to put him to a trial and call an assize if need be, and to pronounce sentence according to what shall be found proven against the said John; and to cause the said sentence to be duly put in execution upon him and to do everything necessary, requisite and which is usual to be done in such cases.

  1. NAS. PA2/25, f.7r-7v. Back