Act in favour of the clerk register regarding the printing of the book called Regiam Majestatem

16. Forasmuch as by diverse acts of parliament it was statute and ordained that all our sovereign lord's lieges of this his highness's realm of Scotland live and be governed under the laws and statutes of this realm only and by no other laws, and seeing the old laws of this realm before the days of King James I were almost perished and not extant, and so many of them as were extant were written in papers and were altogether incorrect, therefore the estates of parliament at diverse times committed their full power to sundry persons, to advise, treat and commune regarding the reduction of the said laws, called Regiam Majestatem, and all other acts, statutes and books to be put in a volume, and to be authorised as the said acts at more length purport. And seeing Sir John Skene of Curriehill, knight, clerk register, according to the said acts and ordinances at command of our said sovereign lord and estates of parliament has, by his great travails, pains and expenses, reviewed, corrected, mended and reduced in a volume the said old laws of this realm before the days of King James I, the which volume containing Regiam Majestatem and other laws, the said clerk register has presented before the whole estates of this present parliament, which they have considered and have allowed thereof as memorable and worthy acts to be printed, wherewith and by the acts of parliament made since the whole lieges of this realm shall be judged, ruled and governed; therefore, the whole estates of this present parliament statute and ordain the foresaid volume and book containing the said old laws of this realm now written, corrected and put in form by the said clerk register to be printed authentically for the well of the whole judges, persons and subjects of this realm; and because there will be great expenses incurred in printing thereof by one, in addition to the great pains, travails and expenses made thereupon already by the said clerk register, for defraying of the which expenses the said estates of this present parliament have allowed and granted to the said clerk register the sum of [...] usual money of this realm to be paid by the sheriffs, bailies, stewarts, barons and other judges of this realm, as well of royalty as regality, and by the prelates, earls, lords and burghs of this realm; and to the effect that the foresaid sum may be contributed amongst the foresaid persons and the more thankfully paid to the said clerk register for the greater expedition of the printing of the foresaid old laws and statutes, have given and granted full power and commission to Alexander [Seton], earl of Dunfermline, chancellor of this realm, Mark [Kerr], earl of Lothian, Patrick [Lyon], earl of Kinghorn, James [Elphinstone], lord Balmerino, secretary and president of the college of justice, Master Alexander Douglas, bishop of Moray, Master Alexander Forbes, bishop of Caithness, Master William Melville, commendator of Tongland, John [Bothwell], lord Holyroodhouse, Sir James Scrimgeour of Dudhope, Sir John Cockburn of Ormiston and [John Livingstone], laird of Dunipace, George Heriot, goldsmith, burgess of Edinburgh, George Bruce [of Carnock], burgess of Culross, and John Lockhart [of Boghall], burgess of Ayr, or to any five of them, to set down a stent roll amongst the foresaid persons who should pay the foresaid sum to the said clerk register in manner foresaid, and to divide the same sums amongst them as they shall think expedient; and whatever the said persons, or any five of them, do in the premises, the said estates, now as then and then as now, declare to be as lawful and sufficient as if the same had been concluded, statute and ordained in this present parliament, and that letters be directed upon a simple charge of six days by deliverance of the lords of session for payment of the foresaid sums, as the foresaid persons shall set down the same by their stent, and that no suspension be granted in favour of whatsoever person or persons except by the lords chancellor, president, [Master John Preston of Penicuik], collector, and [Sir Thomas Hamilton of Binning], advocate, or any two of them.

  1. NAS, PA2/17, f.10v-11r.