[Supplication of Sir William Baillie of Lamington]

Supplication of the Laird of Lamington2

To the king's most excellent majesty and right honourable estates of parliament, the humble petition of Sir William Baillie of Lamington, knight.

That where the estate and living of Lamington have been peaceably held and possessed by me, my father, grandfather and great-grandfather these 70 years bygone without any question or controversy moved relating thereto or any part thereof, and that by virtue of public infeftments held of your majesty and confirmed in parliament, which peaceable possession by the space of so many years according to valid and formal rights ratified in parliament as said is by the laws of the country establishes a right uncontrollable in my person. Notwithstanding whereof, General Major William Baillie has given in a bill at his instance as alleged apparent heir to the late William Baillie of Lamington, my great-grandfather, craving upon certain pretended formalities of civil law in no way received by the laws, customs and practice of this kingdom, that the right of the estate of Lamington made some 70 years since by my said late great-grandfather to Edward Maxwell, alias Baillie, my grandfather, to be declared void and ineffectual in all time coming with all that has followed thereupon, and that he has the only right to the said estate, or otherwise your majesty and estates foresaid would be pleased to appoint a committee of judicious and conscionable judges to that effect, not so much to consider the strict points and formalities of law, but rather to proceed and determine in the said matter according to equity and the law of God and nature albeit the matter be altogether civil concerning the validity or invalidity of rights to the decision whereof the lords of session are only proper judges in the first instance by the institution of the college of justice and by the 92nd act of King James VI, his 6th parliament, and diverse other acts of parliament, declaring that the king's majesty's parliaments shall have little time and opportunity to consider his highness's own affairs and the causes of the common welfare if at the inopportune suit of private parties civil causes properly belonging to the judgement of the college of justice shall be brought before them. As also that the said General Major William Baillie, alleged apparent heir foresaid, is not that party by the laws of this country who under that name can controvert a matter of the least moment and much less the estate and living of Lamington belonging to me, being a member of the house. Likewise it is without example that the right that I and others of his majesty's lieges have of our estates should be drawn in question in so summary a way and not before the lords of session as judges ordinary, which is not admissable by the laws of this country. And I ought to have the liberty and common benefits of justice heretofore competent to all his majesty's subjects who are ordained to be governed by his highness's laws. Therefore I most humbly beseech your sacred majesty and honourable estates of parliament foresaid that the said General Major William Baillie and any process he has regarding the said matter may be remitted to the lords of session, who are only judges competent to the decision of all controversies of rights, and there to pursue all actions competent or that may be competent to him regarding the said estate, before whom I am confident to make appear that my and my predecessors' right is undoubted and unquestionable, and that the said General Major William Baillie has neither interest, nor ground to call the same in question. And craves your majesty's and honourable estates of parliament's foresaid answer.

19 February 1642

Delivered to General Major Baillie.3

  1. NAS, PA6/5, ' November 9 and 10 1641'.
  2. This clause is written on the rear of the document.
  3. This clause is written on the rear of the document.