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Papers collected by Sir Walter Scott dealing with Scottish history and antiquities, chiefly copied from official records and other sources, with some facsimiles., 17th century-early 19th century.

Identifier: MS.901

Scope and Contents

The subjects include the Scottish Regalia (folio 1), the Archers of the Guard (folio 21), the use of Lord Drummond’s executioner by the Town Council of Perth in 1706 (folio 140), the Porteous Riots (folio 143), the Lee Penny (see the ‘Talisman’) (folio 159), Highland traditions, supplied by Dr Mackintosh Mackay (folio 167), and Galloway traditions, chiefly Covenanting, with two ballads (folio 179). The excerpts from records regarding festivities, wapenschawing, etc., (folios 19, 35, 45, 50) may have been made in connexion with the King’s visit in 1822.

The following are also included.

Original bond signed by Francis Stewart, styled Earl of Bothwell, in favour of Lord Kinclaven, 1628. (Folio 40.)

Instructions, superscribed by Charles II, to Lieutenant-General John Middleton regarding the Earl of Glencairn’s rising, 1653/1654, with fragment of signet seal, found in Sir Walter Scott’s blotting-book at Abbotsford in 1932. There is another copy with the royal signature in the Bodleian Library - see ‘Calendar of Clarendon State Papers’, edited by Macray, volume ii, page 308. The covering letter to the instructions is printed in ‘Scotland and the Protectorate’, edited by C H Firth, ‘Scottish History Society’, 1899, page 33. (Folio 43.)

Tract by a Roman Catholic at Duddingston on Roman Catholicism in Scotland, the morals of the minister of Duddingston, etc., [circa 1685-1689]. (Folio 54.)

Account of the assassination of Sir George Lockhart, communicated to the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland by Patrick Fraser Tytler, with a letter of Scott on the subject (proofs), corrected in Scott’s hand, 1829. (Folio 108.)

Letter of William Stewart of Ardvorlich regarding the murder of John Drummond of Drummond-Ernoch and other traditions of his family, 1811 (see ‘Legend of Montrose’, introduction). (Folio 114.)

Copy of report of the trial of James Macpherson, the Banff Freebooter, and other ‘Egyptians’, 1700 (perhaps communicated by James Imlach; see MS.870, folio 57; printed in ‘Spalding Club Miscellany’, volume iii, 1846). (Folio 118.)

Table of the maternal descent of Lord Somerville, with title and note in Scott’s hand, as printed in the ‘Memorie of the Sommersvilles’, [?1814]. (Folio 163.)


  • Creation: 17th century-early 19th century.

Conditions Governing Access

Normal access conditions apply.

Conditions Governing Use

Normal reproduction conditions apply, subject to any copyright restrictions.


183 Leaves ; Folio and under.


iii + 180 folios.

Other Finding Aids

A list of contents has been placed at the beginning.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Five pieces presented, 1931-1932, by Walter Maxwell Scott, Baronet, of Abbotsford, including the original documents of Francis Stewart and Charles II. They are described accordingly in the list of contents.

Repository Details

Part of the National Library of Scotland Archives and Manuscripts Division Repository

Archives and Manuscript Division
National Library of Scotland
George IV Bridge
Edinburgh EH1 1EJ
0131 623 3700