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TITLE
400th anniversary of the Statutes of Iona (2 of 2)
EXTERNAL ID
AB_STATUTES_OF_IONA_02
PLACENAME
Iona
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
ARGYLL: Kilfinchen and Kilvickeon
PERIOD
1600s
SOURCE
Am Baile
ASSET ID
625
KEYWORDS
Acts of Parliament
laws
400th anniversary of the Statutes of Iona (2 of 2)

This extract is from the 'Register of Privy Council of Scotland', Vol IX, 1610-1613 (1889). It lists the nine 'Statutes of Iona', laws passed in 1609 requiring, amongst other measures, that Highland chiefs send their heirs to Lowland Scotland to be taught in English-speaking Protestant schools.

At a court held on Iona on the 24th August 1609, nine Highland chiefs put their signature to the statutes whereupon they were formerly delivered to the king, James VI, by Andrew Knox, Bishop of the Isles. The statutes are often considered to be the first in a series of government measures aimed at the break-up of traditional Gaelic culture and tradition.

'Whoever would understand one of the most important transactions in the History of the Scottish Highlands must read those six printed pages, containing the actual text of 'THE BAND AND STATUTES OF ICOLMKILL.' The purport of the BAND is that, at a Court held by Bishop Knox in the sacred Island of Iona on the 24th of August 1609, nine of the Highland and Island chiefs, - viz., Angus Macdonald of Dunivaig in Islay, Hector Maclean of Duart in Mull, Donald Gorm Macdonald of Sleat in Skye, Rory Macleod of Harris, Rory MacKinnon of Strathordaill in Skye, Lauchlan MacLean of Coll, Donald Macdonald of Ylanterim in Moydart (Captain of Clanranald), Lauchlan Maclean of Lochbuy in Mull, and Gillespie MacQuharrie of Ulva, - had bound themselves by the most solemn oaths to future obedience to his Majesty and to the laws of Scotland.

The Statutes of Icolmkill.

They are nine in number as follows :-

I. The ruinous kirks to be repaired, and a regular parochial ministry to be established and maintained, with the same discipline as in other parts of the realm, the same observance of the Sabbath and of other moralities, and the suppression in particular of the inveterate Celtic practice of marriages for a term of years.

II. Inns to be set up in convenient places in all the Islands for the accommodation of travellers, so as to put an end to mere idle wandering and to the burden on the resources of poor tenants and crofters by the habit of promiscuous quartering.

III. To the same purpose, all idle vagabonds without visible and honest means of living to be cleared out of the Isles; and the chiefs themselves to cease from capricious exactions upon their clansmen, and be content each with a household retinue of as many gentlemen and servants as his means will support, - eg. MacLean of Duart with eight gentlemen, Angus Macdonald, Donald Gorm, Rory MacLeod, and the Captain of Clanranald, with six gentlemen each, and so proportionally with the rest.

IV. Still to the same purpose, all sorning and begging, and the custom of 'conzie', to be put down.

V. A main cause of the poverty and barbarity of the Islanders being 'thair extraordinair drinking of strong wynis and acquavitie, brocht in amangis thame pairtlie be merchandis of the maneland and pairtlie be sum trafficquaris indwellaris amangis thameselffis,' all general importation or sale of wine or aquavitae to be stopped by penalties, with reserve of liberty, however, to all persons in the Islands to 'brew aquavitie and uthir drink to serve thair awne housis,' and to the chiefs and other substantial gentlemen to send to the Lowlands for the purchase of as much wine and aquavitae as they may require for their households.

VI. Every gentleman or yeoman in the Islands possessing 'thriescore kye,' and having children, to send at least his eldest son, or, failing sons, his eldest daughter, to some school in the Lowlands, there to be kept and brought up 'quhill they may be found able sufficientlie to speik, reid, and wryte Inglische.!'

VII. The Act of Parliament prohibiting all subjects of his Majesty from carrying hagbuts or pistols out of their own houses, or shooting with such firearms at deer, hares, or fowls, to be strictly enforced within the Islands.

VIII. The chiefs not to entertain wandering bards, or other vagabonds of the sort 'pretending libertie to baird and flattir,' and all such 'vagaboundis, bairdis, juglouris, or suche lyke' to be apprehended, put in the stocks, and expelled the Islands.

IX. For the better keeping of these Statutes, and in conformity with the rule that the principal man of every clan is answerable for all his kinsmen and dependents, this present agreement to be a sufficient warrant to all chiefs and sub-chiefs to apprehend and try malefactors within their bounds, seize their goods for the King's use, and deliver over their persons to the judge competent to be farther dealt with; the chiefs becoming bound not to reset or maintain within their bounds any malefactors that may be fugitive from the bounds of his own natural superior.

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400th anniversary of the Statutes of Iona (2 of 2)

ARGYLL: Kilfinchen and Kilvickeon

1600s

Acts of Parliament; laws;

Am Baile

This extract is from the 'Register of Privy Council of Scotland', Vol IX, 1610-1613 (1889). It lists the nine 'Statutes of Iona', laws passed in 1609 requiring, amongst other measures, that Highland chiefs send their heirs to Lowland Scotland to be taught in English-speaking Protestant schools.<br /> <br /> At a court held on Iona on the 24th August 1609, nine Highland chiefs put their signature to the statutes whereupon they were formerly delivered to the king, James VI, by Andrew Knox, Bishop of the Isles. The statutes are often considered to be the first in a series of government measures aimed at the break-up of traditional Gaelic culture and tradition.<br /> <br /> 'Whoever would understand one of the most important transactions in the History of the Scottish Highlands must read those six printed pages, containing the actual text of 'THE BAND AND STATUTES OF ICOLMKILL.' The purport of the BAND is that, at a Court held by Bishop Knox in the sacred Island of Iona on the 24th of August 1609, nine of the Highland and Island chiefs, - viz., Angus Macdonald of Dunivaig in Islay, Hector Maclean of Duart in Mull, Donald Gorm Macdonald of Sleat in Skye, Rory Macleod of Harris, Rory MacKinnon of Strathordaill in Skye, Lauchlan MacLean of Coll, Donald Macdonald of Ylanterim in Moydart (Captain of Clanranald), Lauchlan Maclean of Lochbuy in Mull, and Gillespie MacQuharrie of Ulva, - had bound themselves by the most solemn oaths to future obedience to his Majesty and to the laws of Scotland. <br /> <br /> The Statutes of Icolmkill. <br /> <br /> They are nine in number as follows :-<br /> <br /> I. The ruinous kirks to be repaired, and a regular parochial ministry to be established and maintained, with the same discipline as in other parts of the realm, the same observance of the Sabbath and of other moralities, and the suppression in particular of the inveterate Celtic practice of marriages for a term of years. <br /> <br /> II. Inns to be set up in convenient places in all the Islands for the accommodation of travellers, so as to put an end to mere idle wandering and to the burden on the resources of poor tenants and crofters by the habit of promiscuous quartering. <br /> <br /> III. To the same purpose, all idle vagabonds without visible and honest means of living to be cleared out of the Isles; and the chiefs themselves to cease from capricious exactions upon their clansmen, and be content each with a household retinue of as many gentlemen and servants as his means will support, - eg. MacLean of Duart with eight gentlemen, Angus Macdonald, Donald Gorm, Rory MacLeod, and the Captain of Clanranald, with six gentlemen each, and so proportionally with the rest. <br /> <br /> IV. Still to the same purpose, all sorning and begging, and the custom of 'conzie', to be put down. <br /> <br /> V. A main cause of the poverty and barbarity of the Islanders being 'thair extraordinair drinking of strong wynis and acquavitie, brocht in amangis thame pairtlie be merchandis of the maneland and pairtlie be sum trafficquaris indwellaris amangis thameselffis,' all general importation or sale of wine or aquavitae to be stopped by penalties, with reserve of liberty, however, to all persons in the Islands to 'brew aquavitie and uthir drink to serve thair awne housis,' and to the chiefs and other substantial gentlemen to send to the Lowlands for the purchase of as much wine and aquavitae as they may require for their households. <br /> <br /> VI. Every gentleman or yeoman in the Islands possessing 'thriescore kye,' and having children, to send at least his eldest son, or, failing sons, his eldest daughter, to some school in the Lowlands, there to be kept and brought up 'quhill they may be found able sufficientlie to speik, reid, and wryte Inglische.!' <br /> <br /> VII. The Act of Parliament prohibiting all subjects of his Majesty from carrying hagbuts or pistols out of their own houses, or shooting with such firearms at deer, hares, or fowls, to be strictly enforced within the Islands. <br /> <br /> VIII. The chiefs not to entertain wandering bards, or other vagabonds of the sort 'pretending libertie to baird and flattir,' and all such 'vagaboundis, bairdis, juglouris, or suche lyke' to be apprehended, put in the stocks, and expelled the Islands. <br /> <br /> IX. For the better keeping of these Statutes, and in conformity with the rule that the principal man of every clan is answerable for all his kinsmen and dependents, this present agreement to be a sufficient warrant to all chiefs and sub-chiefs to apprehend and try malefactors within their bounds, seize their goods for the King's use, and deliver over their persons to the judge competent to be farther dealt with; the chiefs becoming bound not to reset or maintain within their bounds any malefactors that may be fugitive from the bounds of his own natural superior.