Act anent the restitutioun of the estate of bischoppis

In the parliament haldin at Perth, the nynt day of Julii the yeir of God jM vjC and sex yeiris, be vertue of ane speciall commissioun grantit be oure soverane lord to that effect under the great seall, of the date at Hamptouncourt, the aucht day of Februar jM vjC and four yeiris, oure soverane lord, now in his absens furth of his kingdome of Scotland, ernestlie desyring sa to provyde for the just and politique governament of that estait, as his faithfull subjectis thairof may perfytlie knaw that absens breidis nocht in his royall mynd oblivioun of thair gude, bot that he is daylie mair and mair cairfull of sic thingis as may tend maist to the honour, proffitt and perpetuall stabilitie and quietnes of the said kingdome, quhairin understanding religioun and justice to be sa necessar fundamentis and pillaris, as by thame the authoritie of the princes and quietnes of the peopill in all tymes bipast hes cheiflie bene establischit and mantenit, quhill off lait in his majesteis young yeiris and unsetlit estaitt the ancient and fundamentall policie consisting in the mantenance of the thrie estaittis of parliament hes beine greatumlie imparit and almost subvertit, specialie by the indirect abolischeing of the estait of bischoppis by the act of annexatioun of the temporalitie of benefices to the crowne maid in his hienes parliament haldin at Edinburgh in the moneth of Julii, the yeir of God jM vC fourscoir sewin yeiris, quhairby albeit it wes nather menit by his majestie nor by his estaittis that the said estait of bischoppis, consisting of benefices of cure and being ane necessar estait of the parliament, suld onywayes be suppressit; yit his majestie, by experience of the subsequent tyme, hes cleirlie sene that the dismembering and abstracting frome thame of thair levingis hes brocht thame in sic contempt and povertie that they ar nocht hable to furneis necessaris to thair privat familie, mekill less to beir the charges of thair wonted rank in parliament and generall counsaillis and, eftir the example of thair predecessouris, to assist and supplie thair prince with thair counsaill and gudis in tyme of peax and ware, the remede quhairof propirlie belangis to his majestie, quhome the haill estaittis of thair bundin duetie, with maist hartlie and faithfull affectioun, humelie and trewlie acknawleges to be soverane monarche, absolute prince, judge and governour over all persones, estaittis and causes, baith spirituall and temporall, within his said realme; thairfoir his majestie, with express advyse and consent of the saidis haill estaittis of parliament, being cairfull to repone, restoir and redintegrat the said estait of bischoppis to thair ancient and accustomed honour, digniteis, prerogatives, privileges, levingis, landis, teyndis, rentis, thriddis and estaitt, as the samyn wes in the reformit kirk, maist ample and frie at onytyme befoir the act of annexatioun foirsaid, be the tennour heirof, retreittis, rescindis, reduces, cassis, abrogattis and annullis the foirsaid act of annexatioun of the temporalitie of benefices to the crowne maid in the yeir of God jM vC fourscoir sewin yeiris as said is, in safar as the samyn may in ony sorte comprehend or be extendit to the authoritie, dignitie, prerogatives, privileges, touris, castellis, fortalices, landis, kirkis, teyndis, thriddis or rentis of the saidis bischoprikis or ony pairt thairof, with all utheris actis of parliament maid in prejudice of the saidis bischoppis in the premise, or ony of thame, with all that hes followit or may follow thairupoun, and all actis for dismembring of particular kirkis or commoun kirkis of the saidis bischoprikis frome the samyn, or for separatioun of the thriddis of the saidis bischoprikis frome the bodie, titill and twa pairt of the samyn, to the effect the persones presentlie provydit to the bischoprikis of Scotland or ony of thame, or that sall heireftir be provydit to the samyn, may frelie, quietlie and peciablie injoy, bruik and posses the honouris, digniteis, privileges and prerogatives competent to thame or thair estait sen the reformatioun of that religioun, and all touris, fortalices, landis, kirkis, teyndis, rentis, twa pairt thriddis, patronages and richtis quhatsumevir belanging to the saidis bischoprikis, or ony of thame, and use and exerte the samyn, and frelie dispone upoun the haill twa pairit and thrid temporalitie and spiritualitie of thair saidis bischoprikis and all the premises belonging to the saidis bischoprikis, as the saidis actis of annexatioun and remanent actis maid in onywayes to thair prejudice in the premise, and everie ane of thame and all that followit thairupoun, had nevir bene maid nor done, they allwayes intertenying the ministeris serveing at the cure of the kirkis of thair saidis bischoprikis upoun the reddiest of thair saidis thriddis according to the ordinar assignationis maid or ressonable to be maid thairanent. Attoure, becaus his majesteis intentioun is onlie to restoir the bischoprikis quhilkis ar benefices of cure, and nawayes to alter ony thing done in uther benefices quhilkis ar nocht of cure, and for the better satisfactioun of his majesteis subjectis and faithfull servandis quhome his majestie, in his princelie liberalitie, for diverse gude respectis and causes moveing him, hes beneficit, rewardit and advanceit with erectionis, fewis, patronages, teyndis and utheris infeftmentis, confirmationes of landis, rentis, teyndis, patronages and utheris richtis of abbaceis, prioureis and utheris benefices, nocht being bischoprikis, and to the effect they be nocht prejudgeit nor put in mistrust by this act of thair securitie in the premise, his hienes, with advyse of the haill estaittis of parliament, ratefeis, appreves and for him and his successouris, perpetualie confermes the haill erectionis, infeftmentis, confirmatiounes, patronages, takkis and utheris securiteis of landis, teyndis, patronages, richtis and rentis quhatsumevir of the saidis haill benefices foirsaidis, or ony pairt thairof (nocht being bischoprikis), gewin, disponit or confermit be his majestie during the tyme of the said parliament haldin in the moneth of Julii jM vC fourscoir sewin yeiris, of befoir or sensyne maid agreable to the lawis and actis of the said parliament fourscoir sewin and utheris lawis and actis maid sensyne, and faithfullie promittis in verbo principis nevir to querrell nor impugne the samin, directlie nor indirectlie, in ony tyme cumming. As alsua for the weill and securitie of the tennentis of the landis and teyndis of the saidis bischoprikis, quha since the act of annexatioun hes debursit diverse sowmes of money to his hienes thesaurar for making and confermyng to thame of thair infeftmentis, takkis and securiteis of the saidis landis, teyndis and rentis of the saidis bischoprikis possessit by thame, and to the effect that the annulling of the said act of annexatioun bereiff thame nocht altogidder of the saidis landis, teyndis and rentis of bischopprikis acquirit be thame upoun thair large charges and expenses according to the law than standing, and that upoun the uther pairt the saidis bischoprikis be nocht altogidder maid unproffitable be the unlauchfull dilapidatioun of the rentis thairof and hurtfull conversioun of the victuall, caynis, customes and utheris comoditeis of the samin for unequall and unworthie prices, thairfoir his majestie, with advyse of his estaittis foirsaidis, ordanis the saidis persones possessouris of the landis or teyndis of bischoprikis be vertue of infeftmentis, confirmatiounes or takkis of the samin grantit or sett since the said act of annexatioun and conforme to the samin and lawis of the realme at the tyme of the making thairof, sall have the securiteis, confirmatiounes, takkis and richtis of the saidis landis and teyndis of the bischoprikis foirsaidis renewit and grantit to thame in sufficient, perfyte and valide forme be the bischoppis, possessouris of the saidis benefices, the saidis fewaris, takismen and tennentis payand to the saidis bischoppis for gressum, entres and compositioun for renewing of thair saidis fewis of all landis and utheris belanging to the saidis bischoprikis, and als for ratificatioun of thair saidis takkis of all teyndis pertening thairto, off the quhilkis at the day and date heirof thair is ten yeiris croppis of the samyn to ryn, the doubill of the yeirlie silver duetie contenit in thair saidis fewis and takkis, and the singill of the victuall duetie and of all utheris dueteis expressit thairin, and that by and attoure the yeirlie duetie expressit in thair saidis fewis and takkis, the quhilkis dueteis for gressum, entres and compositioun, the haill estaittis of parliament declairis sall be payit be the saidis fewaris, takkismen and tennentis within yeir and day eftir they be lauchfullie cytit to that effect, and for that samyn cause or eftir that intimatioun of the samyn be maid to thame be the bischoppis in thair awin courtis; and incais of nocht thankfull payment of the doubill of the said silver duetie, and of the singill of the said victuall and utheris dueteis within yeir and day eftir the said citatioun and intimatioun as said is, the saidis estaitis of parliament findis and declairis that the saidis fewaris and takkismen sall be astrictit to pay eftir the expyring of the said yeir and day (thankfull payment nocht being maid within that space of the foirsaidis gressumes, enteres and compositioun extending to the quantitie abonewrittin), the quadruple of the silver duetie and the doubill of the said victuall and utheris dueteis foirsaidis to the saidis bischoppis by and attour the yeirlie dueteis contenit in thair saidis fewis and takkis as said is; and the saidis estaittis declaris that gif thair is nocht ten yeiris compleit to ryn of the saidis takkis of teyndis pertenyng to the kirkis of the saidis bischoprikis eftir the day and date heirof, in that caise the takismen onnawayes sall be astrictit to pay ony gressum, enteres or compositioun for the samyn to the saidis bischoppis, bot they to be frie thairof. Attoure, the saidis estaittis declaris that the said act and ordinance of parliament sall nawayes be extendit, comprehend nor prejudge ony fewis of bischoprikis lauchfullie sett and confermit befoir the said act of annexatioun, quhilk wes in the said moneth of Julii jM vC fourscoir sewin yeiris, exceptand and reserveand alwayes furth of this present act all dispositionis maid of quhatsumevir patronages of the kirkis pertening to the saidis bischoprikis disponit be lauchfull titularis and the kingis majestie, and ratefeit in parliament in favouris of quhatsumevir persone or persones, and nane utheris; and findis and declares all and quhatsumevir dispositionis maid of the foirsaidis patronages of all kirkis pertening to bischoprikis disponit be the lauchfull titularis and his majestie, and nocht confermit in parliament, to be of nane availl, althogh the samyn patronages be grantit and disponit be the kingis majestie and titularis thairof, and lykwayes exceptand and reserveand all commoun kirkis pertening of auld to the saidis bischoppis and thair chaptour in commountie, quhilkis ar disponit be his majestie to quhatsumevir persone at ony tyme preceding the date of this present act. And the saidis estaittis declares that gif thair be ony commoun kirkis pertening to the saidis bischoprikis and to thair chaptour of auld, that now pertenis and fallis to thame be vertew of this present act, that thairby the ministeris quha ar lauchfullie provydit to the saidis commoun kirkis be presentatioun, collatioun and admissioun and serveing thairat sall nawayes be prejudgeit during thair lyfetymes, bot that the saidis provisionis sall be sufficient richt and warrand to the saidis ministeris to bruik, joise and posses thair commoun kirkis foirsaidis according as they ar provydit thairto, for all the dayes of thair lyfetymes, nochtwithstanding of quhatsumevir clause contenit in this present act or ony uther act of parliament that micht mak ony derogatioun to the saidis provisionis, exceptand alwayes and reserveand the castell of Sanctandrois and castell yairdis of the samin, disponit to George, erle of Dunbar upoun the resignatioun of George, archibischop of Sanctandrois, dissolvit and dismemberit fra the said archibischoprik be oure said soverane lord and estaittis, with express consent and assent of the said archibischop, personalie comperand in parliament, quhometo oure said soverane lord in place and recompence of the said castell hes gewin and disponit the provestrie of Kirkhill, vicarage and archidenrie of Sanctandrous, to remane with the said archibischop and his successouris by and attoure ane yeirlie pensioun of thrie hundreth merkis gewin to the said archibischop, sua that the said castell and castell yairdis sall nawayes be comprehendit in this present act, nor yit sall be comptit nor estemit in ony tyme heireftir ony pairt or portioun of the patrimonie of the said archibischoprik, bot sall remane with the said George, erle of Dunbar, his airis and successouris as thair propir heretage, lauchfullie disponit to thame and dissolvit fra the said archibischoprik. And in lykmaner the saidis estaittis declaris that the foirsaid act grantit in favouris of the saidis bischoppis sall nocht be extendit nor prejudiciall to the infeftmentis, richtis and titillis maid to Schir Robert Melvill of Murdocarnie, knycht, his airis and successouris mentionat thairin of the landis of Monymaill and Lethame, with the maner place, yairdis and biggingis of Monymaill and patronage of the kirk of Monymaill pertening of auld to the archibischop of Sanctandrous, and declaris the samyn infeftmentis to stand in the awin strenth nochtwithstanding of this present act, provyding alwayes that the said Schir Robert Melvill and his airis sustene and interteny the ministeris serveing at the said kirk upoun the fruittis of the samin kirk. And, nochtwithstanding of this present act and haill clauses thairin contenit, oure said soverane lord, with advyse foirsaid, haveing considerit the fewaris of the baronie of Glasgow to be mony in number and the povirtie of the maist pairt of thame to be suche as they ar nocht abill to furnesche the ordinary charges for renewing thair infeftmentis, haif dispensit and be this present act dispenses anent the foirsaid clause of renewing of fewis, with samony of the saidis fewaris as have takin thair fewis, without diminutioun of the rentall and conversioun of victuall and utheris dueteis in silver, and quha sall obtene ane ratificatioun frome Johne, now archibischop of Glasgow, of the saidis fewis and richtis befoir the feist of Alhallowmes nixtocum; and declaris the fewis lauchfullie sett as said is to the saidis persones valide and effectuall, thair airis, successouris and assignais alwayes entering be the said archibischop as thair immediat superiour and be his successouris to thair saidis landis, rowmes and possessionis be brevis rasit out of the said archibischoppis chancellarie, preceptis of clare constat, resignationis and confermationis as use is, and payand thair few maillis, fermes, multuris, caynis and utheris dueteis to the said archibischop and his successouris in all tyme heireftir, but prejudice to the lettres of gift and pensionis grantit to the Duke of Lennox, Schir George, Schir James and Schir Archibald Erskynnis pensionis furth of the fruittis of the said archibischoprik of Glasgow, to be bruikit be the said lord duik during the said lord dukis lyfetyme alanerlie.

  1. NAS, PA2/16, f.49v-51r. Back
  2. 'V 2' written in margin beside heading. Back