Legislation: roll of parliament (cont.)

Item, in the same council on the eleventh day of the aforementioned month of December, the king being present, when it had been narrated in the same place how it had been declared in the presence of the king by the council in another earlier council at Linlithgow for Sir Robert [Stewart], earl of Fife, in relation to the lands of North Berwick and the castle of the same, which the late Sir James [Douglas, 2nd] earl of Douglas, held of him, as is contained in the act of the same council, where the same lord earl of Fife prosecuted in the presence of the king and council that the impediment which was thrown before him concerning obtaining the said castle might be removed by the same king and council. As a result it was decreed from the determination and declaration of council that the king ought to cause the same impediment to be removed by his authority. Which thing having been declared and maintained, it was also decreed by the same council that similarly, when the heirs of the aforesaid earl of Douglas in future prosecute in the presence of the said earl of Fife or his heirs for obtaining or recovering their standing and possession of the lands of North Berwick and the castle of the same, according to the course of the common law of the kingdom, the king will be held to cause the same heirs, namely of the said earl of Douglas, to obtain the standing of the lands and entry of the castle and the freedom of the same, if and in as much as they ought to have [them] by law, in the event that the same earl or his heirs2 causes them an unjust impediment or objection.

Item it was delivered by the council that, because Alexander Stewart, son of the king, to whom the king himself granted and entrusted the office of justiciar in the parts north of the River Forth, was accused at various other times before the king and council of being negligent in the execution of his office, namely that he had not administered in that office where and when he ought to have done, and where it seemed that for anyone else to hold the office of justiciar was useless to the community.4 And having been often called and anticipated, he has not compeared, may be removed, and ought to be removed from his office, and another sufficient person established and admitted to the administration. It was also decreed by the council that the letters then exhibited by Sir David de Lindsay under the king's seal are not valid to the end that Sir David could and should serve in the same office.

  1. NAS, Roll of Parliament, PA1/7r, continued.
  2. Presumably the earl of Fife and his heirs, although this is not clear from the grammar.
  3. NAS, Roll of Parliament, PA1/7r, continued.
  4. The final clause of the sentence seems to be defective. The correct sense may be '... and where others were held to administer the office of justiciar it was useless to the community'.