Clan Guthrie

Clan Guthrie
Clan Guthrie
Crest badge
Clan member crest badge - Clan Guthrie.svg
Crest: A dexter arm holding a drawn sword Proper.
Region Lowlands
District Angus

Guthrie of Guthrie arms.svg
Alexander Guthrie of Guthrie
21st Chief of Clan Guthrie
Seat Via Mrgutta 51A, 00187 Rome (Italy).[1]
Historic seat Guthrie Castle

Clan Guthrie is a Lowland Scottish clan.


Clan history

Origins of the name

Although the surname Guthrie has several independent origins, the surname borne by the clan is almost certainly derives from the barony of the same name near Forfar. The place name is derived from a Gaelic word, meaning "windy place".

Wars of Scottish Independence

The first of the name Guthrie on record in Scotland was one Squire Guthrie in 1303 during the Wars of Scottish Independence. He had been sent to France to request the return of William Wallace, who had retired there having resigned the guardianship of Scotland. The mission was evidently successful, as William Wallace did indeed return to Scotland. However, Wallace was later captured and executed by the English.

The Guthries of Guthrie received their estates by a charter from King David II of Scotland between the years 1329 and 1371.

15th century

In 1457, Sir David Guthrie of Guthrie was Armour-Bearer to King James III of Scotland and the Sheriff of Forfar; he became Lord Treasurer of Scotland in 1461 and continued in this office until 1467, when he was appointed Comptroller of the Exchequer. In 1468, he obtained a warrant under the Great Seal to build Guthrie Castle near Friockheim in Angus, which remains standing to this day.

16th century & Anglo-Scottish Wars

In the 16th century, during the Anglo-Scottish Wars, Clan Guthrie fought at the Battle of Flodden Field (1513) against the English. Sir David Guthrie's eldest son Sir Alexander was killed in this battle.

The Guthries were supporters of the young King James VI of Scotland against his own mother Mary, Queen of Scots, who had been portrayed as a challenge to his authority as King. It was around this time that Alexander Guthrie was murdered following an 80 year feud with the neighbouring Clan Gardyne (which continued until 1618).

Guthrie Castle, once the seat of the Guthrie chiefs

17th century & Civil War

The Guthries were religious leaders in the time of Martin Luther. They were also supporters of Presbyterianism against the Roman Catholic church and were ready to back up their beliefs with their lives.

In 1640, during the Bishop's Wars, the position of Bishop of Moray was held by a Guthrie at the fortified seat of Spynie Palace. However, during the year 1640, the palace was besieged by General Robert Monro (d. 1680) of Clan Munro, and Bishop Guthrie was forced to surrender.

The bishop's third son Andrew followed the campaign of James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose. He met a similar fate: after being taken prisoner at the Battle of Philiphaugh, he was transported to Edinburgh and beheaded by Edinburgh's infamous 'Maiden' (a smaller version of the French guillotine). This macabre device is still on display in Edinburgh's Museum of Antiquities.

James Guthrie was a minister, ordained in Lauder in 1638, and, unlike other Guthries, he supported the Covenanters. When he moved to Stirling in 1649, he preached openly against the king’s religious views. The Church of Scotland stripped him of his office, but he carried on unperturbed until his arrest in 1661. After a swift trial, he was executed later that year.

James "the Martyr" Guthrie

James "the Martyr" Guthrie was executed for his beliefs in Edinburgh in 1661. He was described by Oliver Cromwell as "the little man who refused to kneel."

The Chief in the 19th century

Lieutenant Colonel Ivan Guthrie of Guthrie was the last chief of Clan Guthrie to live at Guthrie Castle. Born in 1886, he became a distinguished soldier, commanding the 4th Battalion the Black Watch and was awarded the Military Cross.

Clan Chief

The current chief of Clan Guthrie is Alexander Guthrie of Guthrie, 21st Chief of Clan Guthrie.

Branches of Clan Guthrie

Although the Guthries of Guthrie were the main line of the family, many offshoots existed, some of them mentioned in an old rhyme: "Guthrie o' Guthrie and Guthrie o' Gaigie Guthrie o' Taybank an' Guthrie o' Craigie."

See also


External links

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