A commission for heritable offices

Our sovereign lord, continuing in that purpose and resolution bred in his royal heart in his young years for making of offices of judicatory in this kingdom as they are in all well governed states, employments for men furnished with gifts suitable to the dignity and gravity of the places whereby many abuses may be taken away, which in heritable offices of that kind cannot be avoided, the rights thereof falling often to women, to children or to men who neither can discharge the place nor make choice of sufficient deputes; and yet his majesty, remaining constant in that course of mildness and moderation so familiar to him, and being unwilling to take the said offices from the present possessors thereof who and their predecessors have possessed the same many years as their inheritance without good and competent satisfaction to be given to them by their own consent, has therefore, with advice of the estates of this present parliament, given and granted and, by virtue of this present act, gives and grants full power and commission to John [Spottiswood], archbishop of St Andrews, Andrew [Lamb], bishop of Brechin, John [Graham], earl of Montrose, Thomas [Hamilton], lord Binning, David [Murray], lord Scone, David [Carnegie], lord Carnegie [of Kinnaird], Sir George Hay [of Nether Liff], clerk register, Sir William Oliphant [of Newton], his highness's advocate, Sir Gideon Murray [of Elibank], treasurer depute, and Sir William Seton of Kylesmure, knight, or to any of them, to travail and deal with the whole heritable sheriffs, stewarts and bailies within this kingdom regarding the surrender of the said offices in his majesty's hands, and regarding a competent satisfaction in honour and other ways to be given to them for the same, and to make a faithful report to his majesty of their proceedings therein.

  1. NAS, PA2/19, f.18v.