Acts and Proceedings: 1581, October

Acts and Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland, 1560-1618. Originally published by [s.n.], Edinburgh, 1839.

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Maitland Club, 'Acts and Proceedings: 1581, October', Acts and Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland, 1560-1618, (Edinburgh, 1839), pp. 522-547. British History Online [accessed 16 June 2024].

Maitland Club. "Acts and Proceedings: 1581, October", in Acts and Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland, 1560-1618, (Edinburgh, 1839) 522-547. British History Online, accessed June 16, 2024,

Maitland Club. "Acts and Proceedings: 1581, October", Acts and Proceedings of the General Assemblies of the Kirk of Scotland, 1560-1618, (Edinburgh, 1839). 522-547. British History Online. Web. 16 June 2024,

In this section


The Generall Assemblie convenit at Edenburgh, the 17 day of October 1581: Quher ther was present the Commissioners.

Exhortation beand made be Mr Robert Pont: Leits, Mrs Johne Craig, Andro Melvill, David Lindesay, and Johne Duncansone. The said Mr Johne, be pluralitie of votes, was chosin Moderator hac vice, whose absence foirnoone the said Mr Robert was ordanit to supplie.

Sessio 1a.

[To the effect the actiones to be handled in this Assemblie, may be the sooner and ryplier dispatched, the Assemblie hath thought meet, that certain Assessors be chosen, at extraordinary hours to prepare matters to be treated in this Assemblie; and to that purpose hath nominate Mr James Lowsone, Robert Pont, Andro Hay, Andro Melvill, David Lindesay, Thomas Smeitoun, Alexander Arbuthnot, Andro Polwart, and David Fergusone, to conveen with the Moderator in Mr James Lowsones Galrie at 8 hours before noone, and two after noone, and to continue so furth to the end of this Conventione. C. & B.]

Sessio 2a.

The Assemblie ordainit [their brethren,] Mr Adam Johnstoun and Johne Durie to passe to the Kings Majestie in name of the Assemblie, [humblie] desyreing his Hienes to direct Commissioners from his Grace to sie the proceidings of the Assemblie, and continue therein; quho returning [from his Grace with answer,] declarit, that for sundrie affaires of Counsell he could direct none quhill Thuresday, and that day his Grace sould send some instructit with his commissioun.

The haill Bischops being callit, none was present but Dumblane.

[Anent the Constitutioun of Presbyteries appointit in the last Assemblie: The persons to quhom the charge thereof was committit being callit to give a compt of thair diligence heirin: First, for Lothian, It was answered concerning the Presbytrie of Linlithgow, that they had not proceidit therein, be reason they understood that thir diverse yeirs bygane no Exercise hes been in Linlithgow, besyde the inlaike of a good Moderator there; and therfor thought it meitest that the Presbyterie sould be in Calder, quher the Superintendent might be had to be Moderator; alwayes referris that to the judgement of the brether. C. & B.]

After voting [in the matter,] the Kirk concludit, That the Presbyterie be still in Lynlithgow quhill the nixt Assemblie, and no transporting nor change of the place of the Presbyterie be [made] without the determinatioun of the Generall Assemblie; as lykewayes of all vther Presbyteries; admonishing also the towne of Lynlithgow, be thair Commissioner, that if good concurrance be not had be them thervnto, that the Kirk wald transport the Presbyterie from them. [Morover, for the better establishing of the said Presbytrie in Linlithgow, the Assembly desired their brother, Mr James Lawson, with advice of the brethren of these parts, to try how the same may most conveniently be done, and to report his judgment the morne.

As concerning Fife: In respect sundry doubts were alledged for the stay of the executione of the ordinance of the Assemblie, the Assemblie ordeans the same to be put in write against Thursday, at which time they shall receive their answer.

And for as meikle as many of the brethren craved uniformitie to be had in the forme of erectione of the Presbytries, and a certain rule to be prescrived, to be keeped in times coming; the Assembly ordeaneth their brethren, Mr James Lawson and Mr Thomas Smetone, to conceive in write the forme thereof, at some extraordinar hours, and to present the same to the Assemblie to be judged upon.

Concerning Angus and Merns: Report was made, that the brethren had concurred, and layd a Plat of the Presbytrie whereupon they had agreed; and if the Assemblie thought meet, they would continue the same. The Assembly ordeaned the order hereof to be presented to the brethren the morne.

Anent the Presbytrie of Stirline: Albeit the same was appointed be the General Assemblie, and Dumblane ordeaned to be one of the Kirks thereof; yet sundry of the brethren alledged that there might be a Presbytrie in Dumblane of a sufficient number of Kirks, and another at Stirline. The Assemblie ordeaned a Platt of their Kirks to be exhibit the morne, to be consulted upon.

Tuiching Glasgow, it was declared that the ordinance of the Assemblie was satisfied. C.]

Sessio 3a.

[Anent the Constitutione of the rest of the Presbytries appointed in the last Assemblie, the brethren remit the further handling thereof to the heid of planting of kirks. C. & B.]

[Anent the Kings Majesties Missive presented be Mr Walter Lindsey, concerning Mr Robert Montgomerie, Minister at Stirline: The Assembly hath delayed their answer till four afternoone; and also to the propositione of the brethren of Glasgow, who this day were charged be Mr George Young, in name of the Kings Majestie, to give their resolut answer concerning the admission of Mr Robert Montgomerie the morne afternoone. C.]

[Anent the complaint made upon Alexander Mure, Minister of Falkland, quho maried persons divorcit for adulterie; and Alexander Forrester, Minister at Tranent, quho baptizat ane bairne in ane privat house, against the good order of the Kirk, for which he lyes under suspension from his office: The Assembly, after the acknowledging of his offence and slander given by him, in transgressing and breaking the Acts of the Assemblie, ordeaneth him to be restored to the functione of the Ministrie, he making publick repentance in the kirk of Tranent for the same, in presence of Mr Andrew Blackhall, Minister; and that the like order be observed against others who, in tymes bypast, have broken the good order of the Kirk in the ministratione of Baptizme in privat houses: And for eschewing of such dissordour in tyme comeing, and lykewayes ministratioun of the Lords Supper, and celebratioun of Mariage in privat houses, it is resolved, and concludit be commoun consent of the haill brether, That, in tymes comeing, no Mariage be celebrate, nor Sacraments ministrat in privat houses, bot solemnlie according to the good ordour hitherto observit, under the paine of depositioun of the persons that vses the said ministratioun, from thair offices and functioun of the Ministrie in tyme comeing. C. & B.]

Sessio 4a.

[Anent the answer to the Kings Majesties letter: The Assemblie thought meet to direct their brethren, Mr James Lawson, Mr David Lindsey, John Durie, to his Grace, to let his Grace understand, that the Synodall Assemblie of Lothian received no Missive from his Grace; secondly, that the Assembly, conforme to his Graces Missive, hath stayed proceeding against Mr Robert Montgomerie till Friday, that conference might be had in that matter as is desired, and hath nominate for the part of the Assemblie to confer thereupon, Mr Robert Pont, Mr Thomas Smetone, Mr James Lawson, Mr Andrew Melvil, and Mr Alexander Arbuthnot; requesting his Grace to use no proceeding or charges against the brethren of Glasgow, seeing the whole brethren of the Assemblie take the charge upon them, and avow their proceedings; and in the mean time the Assemblie, be the voice of the Moderator, charged the said Mr Robert not to depart till this Assemblie be dissolved, and continue these summonds till Friday. C.]

The Assemblie of the Kirk gives full commissioun to the Elderschip of Dundie to call the Maister of Gray before thame, to give ane accompt of his prosessioun, and to give confessioun of his faith; and to proceid against him according to the Acts of the Kirk, and that with all possible diligence.

Sessio 5a.

[The brethren appointed to give answer to the Kings Majesties letter, returning declaired, that they had used their commissione to his Grace conforme to directione, and that his Majesties answer was, That he knew not of the sending of the first letter, nor contents of the last; and had appointed certain Commissioners to conserr with these appointed be the Ministrie: Who being dimitted be the Assemblie, after certane hours returning again to shew that they had entred in certain communing with the saids Commissioners, which they repeated at lenth: Alwise in fine, C.] His Majesties Commissioners inquyrit of the Commissioners of the Kirk, in cace the Kirk damned the office of Bischops, quhervnto is annexit also ane temporall jurisdictioun, quherin the Kirk is servit be voting in Parliament, assisting in his Hienes Counsell, contributioun in taxatiouns and sicklyke, What overture they wald shew, quherby the King be not prejudgit be the taking away of that Estate. For the advyseing of this heid, quhilk the Assemblie thocht verie weghtie and of great consequence, they have nominat [the Right Honourable and their brethren,] Andro Ker of Fowdounsyd, the laird of Coldenknowis, Keir, Cardoun, Colluthie, Morphie, Braid, Fintrie, Damahoy, Cowhill, Carletoun, Segy, the Proveists of Edenburgh and Striveling, the Commissioners of Edenburgh, Stirling, [Leith,] Perth, Montrois, Mrs Andro Hay, Andro Polwart, Johne Porterfield, William Rynd, David Fergusone, Johne Rutherfuird, David Lindesay, William Edmestoune, with the sixe brethren [appointed] on the conference, [to conveen in the New Kirk at two afternoone, and with good deliberatione to resolve upon their opinion and judgement, to be reported to the full Assembly.

For answering of the Bills: The Assemblie appoints Mr James Melvil, Mr James Carmichel, the Laird of Colluthie, Mr James Balfour, Mr Andrew Melvil, James Anderson, John Clappertoune, Mr Thomas Buchanan, to conveene at afternoone, and to continue dayly in the lost of the New Kirk till they be answered. C.]

Forsameikle as the Kings Majestie, with advyce of his Counsell, hes sett out and proclaimit a godlie and christian Confessioun of Faith, to be imbraceit be all his true subjects; and be the same expreslie giving commandement to the Ministrie to proceid against quhatsoevir persons that will not acknowledge and subscryve the same, quherin great negligence hes [hithertill] bein sein, farre by the duetie and office of true pastours: Heirfor the Kirk and Assemblie present hes injoynit and concludit, That all ministers and pastours within thair bounds, with all expedient and possible diligence, execute the tenour of his Majesties proclamatioun, betuixt and the nixt Synodall Assemblies of every Province; and present befor the [said] Synodall Assemblies, to the Moderatour therof, thair duetifull diligence in this behalfe, to be reportit to the nixt Generall Assembly of the Kirk, vnder the paine of deprivatioun of the saids ministers from the functioun of the ministrie, that beis found negligent heirin.

Sessio 6a.

The brethren appointit to conferre vpon the overture [to be] made to the Kings Majesties Commissioners concerning Bischops, reportit, That, after long reasoning, they had aggreit in this farre, that tuitching voting in Parliament, assisting in Counsell, Commissioners from the Generall Kirk sould supplie the place of Bischops: And as to the exerceing of the civill or criminall jurisdictioun anent the office of Bischops, the heretabill Bailyies sould vse the same; referring to the judgement of the haill Kirk to consider of thair ansuer, if they thoght the same meit to be communicate be the said brether to the Kings Commissioners: quhilk the Kirk altogether thought meit, and allowit the judgement of thair brether.

Sessio 7a.

[The which day] compeirit James Melvill, Gentillman of the Kings Chalmer, and presentit vnto the Kirk his Majesties wryting, concerning tryall to be takin of certaine words alledgit spokin be Mr Walter Balcanquell, in his late sermoun, against his Hienes Cusine, Esme Duke of Lennox, with credit to the bearer quho shew that in this farre he had credit to speake; That becaus at the last calling of Johne Durie and the said Mr Walter befor the Privie Counsell, vpon account of thair sermouns, offence was takin be the Kirk, therfor his Grace now laments the matter to the Assemblie, willing them to try the matter, and put ordour therin.

The words quherat the Dukes Grace is offendit, are thir, that the said Mr Walter had spokin in pulpitt, That, within thir four ȝeirs, Papistrie had entrit in the countrey, not only in the Court, but in the Kings Hall, and [was] mantainit be the tyrranie of a great campion, quho is callit Grace; and if his Grace wald oppone himselfe to Gods Word, he sould have litle grace.

Farther, concerning the Bischop of Glasgow, the Kings Majestie desyreit they sould stay any proceidings against him as Bischop; ȝet if ther be any vther thing that the Kirk hes to lay to his charge, let them vse thair ordour.

Heirvnto the said Mr Walter ansuerit: Seeing that, in the Kings Majesties letter, and credit givin to the bearer therof, he is accusit, prayed the Moderatour to suffer him [a litle] to giue his ansuer therto; the summe quherof shortlie salbe this: First, he praises God that he is not accusit of any thing quherin either civillie or criminallie in his lyfe or conversatioun, he hes offendit the Kingis Majestie or his lawis, quhervnto with all reverence and at all tymes he is readie to submitt himselfe as effeirs; bot is accuseit of these things quhilk he hes spokin publicklie in the pulpitt, quherin he hes bein more plaine in reproving of vyce then some men can goodlie suffer, quhilk is a verie point of his doctrine; quhilk, howbeit, he ther heare callit open slander, ȝet he must so justifie the same, that thogh all the kings of the earth wald call it erroneous, ȝet he is readie heir be good reason to prove it to be the verie trueth of God; and if neid sall requyre it, to seale it with his blood. Secondlie, he praises God for this, that of his last accusatioun God hes givin this meikle victorie to his Kirk, that howbeit then it was callit in questioun, to quhom the judgement of the Doctrine sould appertaine, ȝit as then be good reason it was concludit, and promisit be the Kings Majesties Counsell and Commissioners [appoyntit] thersra to conferre with the Ministers in that matter, That in all tymes comeing the tryall of the Ministers doctrine sould be referrit to the judgement of the Assemblie of the Kirk, as the onlie competent judge thervnto; so now it is performit, and for that he sies that promise now keipit, he thanks God, and is so meikle the more glad to give his ansuer befor thair godlie Wisdomes of the Assemblie present, as his competent judges in this matter, and that after this maner. As concerning these things that he spake in his sermoun the last Wedinsday, he spake them not quyetlie, bot all his brether and all the haill Assemblie heard them, and so, of all vthers, can best judge of the same: Quherfor, with all reverence, he will submitt him selfe simplie vnto thair godlie judgements, alwayis neither being ashamed of his doctrine, neither ȝet being myndit to give any advantage to his enemies, so farre as he may, whose purpose aganis him he knowes in this matter. He will only requyre this conditioun, that the Canon of the Apostle Paul be keiped to him, quhilk is this; Against ane elder receive no accusatioun, but vnder two or thrie witnesses; according to the quhilk forme of proceiding he craves in this matter. Heir are ȝe the Assemblie of the Kirk, as competent judges for him; heir he is ready befor ȝour Wisdomes to ansuer to all accusatiouns that salbe laid against him, and vnderly ȝour judgements thervnto. Let any man, therfor, according to the Canon of the Apostle, quhilk on no wayis ȝe can breake, stand vp heir befor ȝou, and say he hes any thing to accuse the said Mr Walter of, either in lyfe or doctrine, and his two or thrie witnessis [readie] with him to prove his accusatioun; then the said Mr Walter sall ansuer his accusatioun [as effeirs:] For seeing James Melvill hard not his doctrine, and therfor will not take vpon him to accuse the said Mr Walter, he will superseid farther ansuering, quhill he sie his accuser quhatsumer, to quhom, be the grace of God, he salbe readie to ansuer as accords.

The Assemblie ordaines Mr Thomas Smeitoun and David Fergusone to passe to the Kings Grace with this ansuer: That seeing Mr Walter is ane brother in the ministrie, the Canon of the Apostle must be keipit vnto him; and therfor the accuser, with his two witnesses, ought to be had. Farther, in respect that at the last calling of Johne Durie befor the Privie Counsell, vpon ane compt of certaine words alledgit spokin in his sermoun, ordour was takin be certaine Commissioners of Counsell and brether of the Kirk, that, in cace such accusatiouns afterward sould fall out, the Kirk sould have the judgement therof: and if the Kings Majestie please to send any Commissioners [to be present] at the tryall, they sould sie the proceidings of the Kirk; therfor desyres his Majestie to send Commissioners to sie this matter tryed, seeing the Kirk is most willing to try the same.

[The Moderator warned, in name of the Assemblie, Mr Robert Montgomerie being present, that he depart not from this Assemblie till this matter be tried; which he promised faithfully to do.

Sessio 8a.

The brethren appointed be the Assemblie to report thair answer to the Kings Majestie, Declared that they had discharged thair commissione, and that the King had desired James Melvil to put the Counsel in remembrance of some Commissioners to be sent to the trial against Mr Walter.

Sessio 9a.

Mr Johne Craig, Minister of the Kings house, declared that he presented to the Kings Majestie the letter writen be the Erle of Angus to the Assemblie; who, after reading thereof, desired him to present the same to the Counsel in his name, which he did, requiring the Counsel to consider the matter aright, and give unto their Master good counsel therein; as it was his case to-day, it might be theirs to-morrow.

The Assembly ordeaneth William Christesone to pass to the Kings Majestie, and mean to his Hienes the great division, and deadly feeds in all quarters of the realme, to the great hinderance not only of religion, but of the common wealth; desiring his Grace to authorize some Commissioners of the Kirk, as they shall direct, for reparing thereof.

Anent the conference with the Kings Commissioners: The brethren appointed therto declared they had waited theron; and the Kings Commissioners shew they had no laizour. C.]

Anent the establishing of Presbyteries: The Kirk assemblit hes nominat certaine brethren to travell diligentlie in erectioun of Presbyteries, as they salbe severallie divydit [in manner under specified,] betuixt and the nixt Assemblie; and ordaines thair brother, Mr James Lowsone, to pen the forme of proceiding in erectioun therof, that the brether being informeit of the ordour, may vniformelie proceid therein.

[For Cathness and Sutherland.

Mr George Hay, Mr John Robertsone, Mr George Monro, and John Gray.

For Ross.

Mr Johne Robertsone, Mr George Monro, the Parson of Duffas, the Minister of Innerness.

For Murrey.

The Person of Dussus, the Minister of Innerness, Mr George Hay, John Strathauchan, and James Reid.

For Aberdeene and Bamf.

Mr Alexander Arbuthnet, Mr George Pattersone, David Howesone, James Reid, and Steven Meason.

For Merns.

The Laird of Dun, Mr Andrew Mylne, Patrick Bonckle, Alexander Keith, my Lord of Deir, and the Erle of Marshel.

For Angus.

William Christeson, James Anderson, the Laird of Dun, Mr John Hepburne, the Laird of Kinaird in Kerse, Mr Patrick Frazer, the Erle of Montrose, the Provost of Dundee, the Laird of Pourie-Ogilvie, PowrieFothringhame, Grange, Fleck, Moygude.

For Perth and Stratherne.

The Minister of Sanct Johnstoune, Mr William Rynd, Mr William Edmistoune, the Minister of Tibbermure, Mr Alexander Dinmure, the Lord Ruthven, the Laird of Bathyok, and thir brethren to take advice of my Lord Grahame, the Laird of Keir, John Duncansone, and Mr James Pont, concerning that part of the Diocie of Dumblean.

For Dunkeld.

The same brethren, with the Minister of Dundee, and James Anderson.

For the East end of Fife.

Mr Thomas Buchannan, Mr Patrick Adamson, Mr Andrew Melvil, Mr William Clerk, the Lairds of Lundie and Caluthie, Patrick Kyninmonth. C.]

[For Falkland.

Mr Walter Balcanquall, Mr Patrick Adamsone, My Lord Rothes, the Laird of Balvaird, the Laird of Creiche. C. & B.]

[The West end of Fife.

David Fergusone, George Scot, Peter Blackwood, the Lairds of Pitsirran and Pittincreife.

For establishing the Presbytrie of Linlithgow:

Appointed Mr James Lawsone, and Mr David Lindsey.

As to the Merce:

Ordeans Mr David Lindsey to visit the Presbytrie erected there, and to exhort the Gentlemen to hold hand thereto.


The Minister of Jedburgh, John Clappertoune, Mr William Achinmoulie, the Lairds of Faudonside, Cessurd, Coldingknows, Nicol Carncroce, Simon Scot of Thirlestoune, the Laird of Hundelie, Mr John Knox.

For Tiviotdail.

John Brand, Mr Andrew Blackhall, Mr George Hay, Mr Archibald Douglass, the Lairds of Traquare, Skirline, and Blackbaranie.

For Nithisdail.

Mr James Bryson, the Minister of Dumsries, Mr Archibald Sinclar, my Lord Herries, Maxwel, and Dumlenerige.

For Galloway.

John Duncanson, Mr James Hamiltone, James Dodds, John Young, the Laird of Lochinvar.

For Kyle, Carrick, and Cuninghame.

Mr John Young, Minister of Air, John Mackorne, Mr James Greg, the Lairds of Bargenie, Carrlingtoune, Capringtoune, Hesilheid, and my Lord Eglintoune.

For Clilddsdail, Rensrew, and Lennox.

Mr Thomas Hay, Mr Andrew Polwart, Mr John Hamiltoune, Mr Thomas Smetone, and Mr Andrew to oversee the countrey where Presbyteries are not established.

Sessio 10a

Anent the accusationes layd verbo to the charge of Mr Robert Montgomerie: The answers being heard, and answered negative, the Assemblie ordeaned the said Mr Robert to take the copy thereof, and answer in write upon Twesday before noon: The tenor of the said accusationes followeth. C.]

[Certane] Articles whereof Mr Robert Montgomerie, Minister at Striveling, was oppinly accusit in the Generall Assemblie, anent his doctrine.

1. That publicklie preaching in the kirk of Striveling, he proponit a questioun twiching the circumcisioun of wemen, and in the end concludit, that they were circumcised in the soir skin of their foirheid.

2. In Glasgow, he [openlie] taught that the discipline of the Kirk is a thing indifferent, and may stand this way or that way.

3. [Approving the inward calling to the Ministrie, he left the outward and ordinarie calling in doubt. C.]

4. He accusit the Ministers that they vsed fallacious arguments and captious, and that they were curious braines.

5. So farre as he could, he travellit to bring the originall languages, Greik and Hebrew, in contempt, abusing thereto the words of Apostle, 1 Cor. 14. and tantinglie asking, In quhat schoole were Peter and Paul graduat.

6. To prove the corrupt estate of Bischops in our tyme, he broght foorth the examples of Ambrose and Augustine, &c.

7. It is sufficient to baptize in the name of the Father only, or in the name of the Sonne, or in the name of the Holy Ghoft, because they are all one God, and to that effect alledgit the 19 of the Actis.

8. The matters of Discipline and lawfull calling in the Kirk, he callit trisles of Polecie.

9. He accusit the Ministrie of seditioun and leise Majestie saying, exhorting them not to be seditious, nor to meddle with hie mattres, to leave off to put on crownes, and put off crownes, for if they meddlit any farther therwith, they wald be reprovit.

10. He condemnit the applicatioun of the Scripture to the particular maners and corruptions of men, mockinglie asking, In quhat Scripture they may find a Bischop for a 1000 pound, horse, corne, and pultrie; and quhen they teach of love, How could they find Judas.

11. He oppugned the doctrine of Chryft, quho pronouncit that the most part are rebellious and perisch.

12. He denyed, that in the New Testament any mentioun was made of the Presbyterie or Elderschip.

13. He accusit the Ministers of Pasquilles, of grudging and murmuring, of trouble and confusioun, of lying and backbyting, saying, Quher is it, who will doe it, what fault can they find with the Court: As for my selse I find none.

14. The Kirk beand traducit be pasquilles and infamous lybells, not only purgit he not the Kirk nor himselfe therof, having good occasion, but rather approvit the same.

15. He vsed [in] his preaching against the Ministrie, the verie wordes of the lybell that was castin in the Kings chalmer agains them.

16. This quarter ȝeir bygane, he hes bein negligent in doctrine, discipline, and assisting of the Elderschip.

Sessio 11a.

[Anent the conference appointed with the Kings Commissioners: The Assemblie required the brethren who were nominat to this effect, to pass and insift in seeking the conference; as likewise to desire that certaine of the Counsel might be chosen to concurr and assift in forming of such Articles as shall be meet to be proponed be the Kirk to the Parliament. C.]

Heids referritt from the Synodall [Assemblie] of Lowthiane to the Generall Assemblie.

1. First, That ane vniversall ordour be tane and made be the Generall Assemblie, for examinatione, tryall, admissioun, and ordinatioun of Ministers.

2. To inquyre quhat persons of the Ministrie sall designe gleibs and manses; and seeing that the Synoddall [Assemblie] of Lawthiane hes thocht good, that every Presbyterie sall direct some of thair awin number to designe gleibs and manses within thair awin bounds, we crave the consent of the Generall Assemblie, that the same salbe vniversall; and quher ther is no Presbyterie, to appoint quho sall designe the same.

3. Who sall awaite vpon the platt for modifieing of the Ministers stipends.

4. What answer salbe givin to the Kings Majesties letter concerning the vnioun and disjunctioun of Kirks.

5. That an vniformitie be vsed for sumounding of persons befor the Presbytery, and proces that is to be led befor the same.

6. To sute that the tryall and admissioun of all masters of schooles, be now joynit to the Presbyteries.

7. Seeing we of the Synoddall [Assemblie] of Lawthiane hes aggreeit, that disputatioun salbe every day of the Exercise in every Presbyterie, especially vpon such articles as are in contraversie betuixt us and the Papists: for avoiding of negligence of Ministers, and to the end we may the better withstand the adversar, that the Generall Assemblie will appoint the forme therof.

8. What ordour salbe vseit with Ministers and Reidars that sellis thair gleibs and manses, as ȝe ovirsie the same.

9. That ane article be suited be the Generall Assemblie at the Parliament, that all marriages without consent of parents, proclamatiouns of bands, or vtherwayes without the awin solemnities according to the ordour of the Kirk, be decernit null.

10. To crave that ane Act of Parliament may be made aganis them that passes in pilgrimages, and vses superstitioun at wells, croces, images, or vther papisticall idolatrie, or observes feasts and dayes dedicat to Santes, or setts out beanfyres for superstitioun.

11. Seing the Act of Parliament appoints them that are convict of notorious adulterie, and through the ambiguous expositioun of this word Notorious, no execution is vsed thervpon: Therfor for avoyding the plagues hingand above this haill countrie for this cryme, That the Generall Assemblie wald crave that ane act may be made in Parliament for punishment of all persons to the death, quhosoevir are laufullie convict of adulterie.

12. Seing ane Act of Parliament is made anent discharging of mercatts vpon the Sonday, and no executioun hes followit thervpon, quherthrow the peiple absenting themselves from the Kirk, and waiting vpon the mercatt, continues in ignorance, and be this meanes atheisme does increase: Desyre that some ordour may be takin in this Parliament for the executioun of the said act; [and] that some punishment may be appointed aganis the magistrates that puts not the same in executioun, notwithstanding any privat dispensatioun in the contrair.

13. That ane Act of Parliament be made for provisioun of gleibs and manses to sick ministers as teaches at Abbay Kirks, lyke as they are provydit for vthers.

14. Because ther is ane act of Parliament, that all Provostries and Prebendaries salbe givin to schollers to hold them at the schooles; and it is of veritie that ther are verie many of these sort, that is of cure of soules and paroch kirks, not the less, be reason of the act of Parliament, they are givin to Courtiers: Therfor we desyre that ane act of Parliament may be, That all Provestries and Prebendaries that hes care of saules, may be givin to none but to Ministers; and that if any be givin, [they] may be null in tyme comeing. Sicklyke, Prebendaries foundit to schooles and Masters teaching the same, be givin, conforme to the foundatioun, to schoole masters for instructing of the ȝouth; and if the same be disponed vther wayes, the disposition to be null.

[Followeth the Tennor of the] Answers made to the saids Heids.

Anent the first article: The Kirk hes ordanit William Christesone, Mrs Andro Melvill, Thomas Smeitoun, Alexander Arbuthnot, and James Lowsone, to considder the ordour at extraordinar houris, and to report thair judgements to the Kirk; and Mrs Andro Hay and Nicoll Dalgleish to assist them.

As to the second: The first part is aggreit vnto; and quher Presbyteries are not ȝet, nor cannot be erecit, the Commissioners quhilk were befor, are appointed to remaine Commissioners [yet] to that effect.

For satisfieng of the third: The Kirk hes nominat the Commissioners vnderwrytin, viz.

The Commissioners of Orkney and Zetland, For Orkey and Zetland.
[and, in their absence, Mr David Lindsey,
Mr George Hay:—For Cathnes.
Mr John Robertsone:—For Ross.
Mr John Keath:—For Murrey.
James Reid:—For Aberdeene and Bams.
:—For Angus and Merns.
Mr Thomas Buchanan:—For Fise.
Mr Patrick Adamson,
David Fergusone,
Alexander Dinmure:—For Perth and Stratherne.
Mr David Lindsey:—For West Lothian and Stirline Shire.
Mr Adam Johnstoune:—East Lothiane.
John Clappertoune:—Merce.
Mr Andrew Clayhills:—Teviotdail.
George Johnstoun,
Mr Andrew Blackall:—Tweddail.
John Brand,
Mr Peter Watson,
Mr James Brysone:—Nithisdale.
John Duncanson:—Galloway.
Mr John Young:—Kyle, Carict, and Cuninghame.
Mr Andrew Hay:—Clidsdail, Rensrew, and Lennox. C.]

For ansuering to the fourth concerning the Kings letter: Ordaines the Clerk Register to be consultit vpon the ansuer.

To the fyft: Referris the forme therof to be conceivit in wryte be Mrs David Lindesay and Patrick Adamsone [the morne] betuixt 6 and ix.

As to the 6: Aggried to be proponed in Article to the Parliament.

The 7: Referrit to the Elderschips; and alwayes quher thir disputatiouns may be had, the Kirk thinks them good.

For ansuer to the 8: The acts of the Assemblie to be put in execution against such persons be the Elderschips.

The 9: Ordaines this article to be cravit at the Parliament, beand first well qualified and presented to the Kirk.

The 10 sicklyke. The 11 aggried. The 12 sicklyke; and the Kirk to proceid lykewayes against the violaters of the Sabboth day, and mantainers of the same.

The 13 and 14 aggried.

Sessio 12a.

[The brethren appointed to insist in the Conference returned report of their answer, That certane of the Kings Counsel were ordeaned to conveen the morn afternoone, to reason annent the Bishops; and as to the forming of the Articles, desired that the brethren should penn the same, and shew them to the said Commissioners; requiring farther concerning Mr Robert Montgomerie, that the Assemblie should not proceed in any way against him while the Conference were absolved. The Assemblie hath ordeaned the said brethren nominate before the said reasoning, with Mr David Lindsey, John Duncanson, and William Christesone, to on wait upon the said Conference the morne afternoon; and sicklike, the same brethren to conceive in write the said Articles, that they may be presented to the saids Commissioners after the Assembly hath seen them.

As concerning Mr Robert Montgumerie: In respect of the Kings Majesties request, the Assemblie superceeds the process against him while Wednesday: In the mean time ordeans their brethren, John Duncansone and John Brand to crave of the Kings Majestie, that as the Assemblie hath delayed their proceedings against the said Mr Robert, so his Grace will superceed any further proceeding with him concerning the Bishopricke. C.]

For sameikle as be the great and many divisiouns and deadly feids ryseing in all the quarters of the realme, not only is the Word of God and true religioun burdenit with slanders, but also the comoun weill enormelie woundit and hurt; discipline and all good ordour confoundit; brotherlie charitie and amitie alluterlie contemnit, to the greife of good mens conscience: Heirfoir the Kirk hes ordainit to thair lovit brether, John Durie, Mrs David Lindesay, Andro Polwart, Andro Hay, Thomas Smeitoun, the Ministers of Air and Irwing, to travell in the West; James Lowsone, John Brand, David Lindesay, to travell betuixt my Lord Gowrie and Oliphant; the Lairds of Colluthie and Kinnaird, the Bailyie of Errol, Patrick Adamsone, William Chrystesone, and Mr James Balfour, to travell in Angus, betuixt my Lord Crausurd and Glames; and effectuously interveine for reconcileing of the saids parties, and vthers falling out in all thir quarters: requyring them in the name of God, and of the haill Kirk, to live in vnitie and peace with vthers as brether and members of ane body, and not to give occasioun, be thair divisioun, of slander, and oppin the mouthes of the enemies to burdein [and charge] the Evangell with calumnies, as they will shew themselves [to be] the sonnes of peace.

Sessio 13a.

The Kirk, baith for provisioun of Sanct Androse and vthers burghes wanting pastours, hes nominat certaine brether, out of whose number so many salbe electit, to be placit in the saids rowmes, whose names followes; Mrs James Craig, Alexander Hoome, William Rynd, George Hay, George Patersone, Gilbert Gairdin, Alexander Dunmure, James Hamiltoun, James Melvill, James Balfour, Johne Knox, David Lindesay, Thomas Makgie, Michaell Cranstoun, James Anderson, and William Achmoutie: ordaining the brether that knawis any vther persons qualified for the Ministrie, to give in thair names afternoone.

Anent the corruptioun of buriall within the towne of Sanct Androes: The Assemblie hes ordainit, [and ordains] Mr Patrick Adamsone to put the act of the Kirk to executioun aganis the persons that hes contraveinit the same.

Sessio 14a.

[Anent the questione, which hath been in part reasoned, concerning the marriage of Parties divorced for adultrie:] The haill brethren are admonisched to observe the act made already anent the mariage of Parties divorced for adulterie, vnder the paines therin conteinit, quhill the questioun be finallie resolvit vpon be the advyse and consent of the haill Kirk.

[Anent the conference had with the Commissioners of the Kings Majestie, concerning the Bishops, and Articles to be proponed to Parliament: The Assembly appoints Mr David Lindsey and Mr Thomas Smetone to await on the said answer the morne, and to that effect to pass doun to the Abbey the morne at 9 hours. C.]

Sessio 15a.

Anent the desyre of [their brother,] Mr Walter Balcanquell, Minister of Edenburgh, desyreand, that, according to the Kings Majesties directioun to the Kirk, his accusatioun may be lawfullie tryed, and his accuser and witnes broght befor; or els, seeing he spake nothing but publicklie in face of the haill brethren, that they sould give thair judgement and determinatioun in the matter; submitting him alwayes reverentlie to thair Wisdomes.

The brethren present ordained [their brethren,] Mrs Thomas Smeitoun and David Lindesay, to passe to the Kings Majestie, and shew thair good will to have the matter tryed conforme to his wryting; desyreing for that effect of his Grace, that the accuser, with his two witnesses, may be broght befor the Kirk; as also, if it be his Hienes pleasure, to send some Commissioners from the Counsell, to sie the matter rightlie judgeit and proceidit in be the Kirk.

Anent the supplicatioun givin in be Johne Craig, appeirand of Ramuscraig, and Agnes Irwing his spous, desyreing that the Commissars of Edenburgh sould be requyrit to superseid the cause of Barbara Keith aganis them befor the said Commissars: The saids Commissars being present, the Kirk requyrit them in this particular, as also in vther things that appeirs to touch the jurisdictioun of the Kirk, that on na wayis they proceid quhill they conferre with the Pryour of Pettinweime, Mrs Robert Pont, Alexander Arbuthnot, quho sall concurre with them the morne at nyne houres, and reason with them both anent thair jurisdictioun and the jurisdictioun of the Kirk, that neither of them vsurp vthers jurisdictiouns; and heirin to report thair judgement to the Kirk againe; requeisting also the saids Commissars, that, dureing the dependance of this conference, no farther be proceidit in the said cause: unto the quhilk conference the said Commissars aggried.

Sessio 16a.

[Ordeans John Smith or Pattrick Gilespie to warn Mr Robert Montgomerie to be present the morne after noone. C.]

The brethern direct to the Kings Majestie and Counsell, reportit, That be reason of the great affaires of the King and Counsell, they could get no ansuer of such things as they were directit for.

Sessio 17a.

The Kirk consentit to the supplicatioun of Alexander Borthwick, Minister at the Kirk of Livingstoun, quho being ane actuall minister and of meane literature, humblie desyrit the Kirk to grant him licence to gang to some Vniversitie within this countrey, quher he may studie in Theologie, and to have some kirk neir adjacent ther, quher he may travell in the ministrie, in the meane tyme; so meikle the rather as the hes obtainit leive of his flocke, quho may at this tyme be easilie provydit.

Ordaines Mr David Lindesay to passe to the Sessioun of Edenburgh and desyre them to declare, if they, or any of them, fand any errour, slander, or offence in the sermoun preached be Mr Walter Balcanquall, vpon Wednisday was aught dayis.

[Anent the desire of the Commissioner of Stirline, defiring the Assemblie to be carefull to provide a minister and pastor to the Kirk: The Assemblie directed their brethren, the Laird of Careltoune and Mr Thomas Buchanan, to Mr Robert Montgomerie, to crave his answer in writ, If he will remain minister of Stirline, or not, and to compear before the Assemblie, if he may, presently: who returning with his answer, Declaired he was lying in his bed, as he alledged, fick, and if the Commissioner of Stirline will come to him, he shall give them answer: As to an answer in write to the desire of the Assemblie, answered, He received no ordinance in writ. Immediately hereafter were dispatcht unto him from the Assemblie, the same brethren with ane ordinance from the Assemblie in writ, charging him absolutly to answer, If he will abide in the charge of the said ministrie in the Kirk of Stirling, or not, under the pain of dissobedience if he refused.

Sessio 18a.

The brethren direct to Mr Robert Montgomerie with the ordinance of the Assembly, returned his answer, That his place in the ministrie of the Kirk of Stirline was be the Kirk, and for his part, if it pleased the Kirk, he is content to leave the same; howbeit he be not content to leave the ministrie in the Kirk of God, craveing of the Kirk, that he may have their good will therein, and of his flock. Herewith also they presented in the said Mr Robert his name, the tenour of a sermon preached be him, as ane answer in effect to all the accusationes being given in be Mr Andrew Melvil against him; which being read, and considered: To the first part concerning his flock, The Assemblie answered, They would give him no licence to leave the Kirk of Stirline; commanding him to remain with his flock there, while he be removed be the Generall Assemblie, under the pain of the censures of the Kirk. C.]

Anent the accusatiouns given in be Mr Andro Melvill, Principall of the New Colledge of Sanct Androes, against Mr Robert Montgomerie, Minister of Striveling; and his ansuer made therto verbo befor, and givin in this afternoon in his name: The Kirk being resolvit therwith, admitts to the said Mr Andro his probatioun, the contents of the said articles, assigning to him the morne to prove the samein; and ordaines the officer of the Kirk to warne Mr Robert to compeir the morne, at ten houres, in the Assemblie, to heir witnes and probatioun receivit.

[Anent the accusatione layed against Mr Walter Balcanqual, one of the Ministers of the burgh of Edinburgh, for alledged uttering and speaking of certaine words in his late sermon in the pulpit thereof, charging, as was alledged, the Kings Majesties cusine, Esme Duke of Lennox, with sundry things importing very highly the estate of the religione, whereof the particular report was made be James Melvil, a Gentleman of his Majesties Chamber, in face of the full Assemblie, and bearer of his Hienes letter, be credit given to him thereby &c.: C.] The haill Assemblie being of good mynd and weill affectionat to try the points of the accusatioun givin in be James Melvill, Gentillman of his Majesties Chamber, in name of the Duke of Lennox; and having diverse tymes travellit with his Majestie, that the rule of the Apostle sould be keipit to thair brother, and the accuser, with his twa witnesses, brocht befor; as lykewayes, that his Majestie wald direct some Commissioners from his Counsell, to vnderstand heirin the just proceedings of the Kirk: quherin seeing no effect of thair sute, ȝet, for satisfactioun of the Kings Majestie, and removing all the slander that may arise heirby, first direct certaine Commissioners from the haill Assemblie to the particular Kirk of Edinburgh, quherof the said Mr Walter is minister, requyring of them, If, in the said sermoun, quhilk was vpon Wednesday was aught dayis, they, or any of them, had found, [or finds,] any word spokin quhilk was erroneous, slanderous, or offenfive: Whose ansuer being reportit be ane brother of thair Session, That they had heard nothing spoken be him therin, that was either erroneous, slanderous, or offensive, bot good and sound doctrine, quherof they desyrit the approbation of the haill Kirk conveinit: The haill Assemblie, voteing particularlie in this matter, but any contradictioun, declarit, That they nor nane of them fand or finds any fault in the said sermoun, nothing spokin therin that conteinit either errour, slander, or just offence, bot solid, good and true doctrine; praising therin God, and justifieing thair brother of that accusatioun quherwith he is chargeit.

Sessio 19a.

Anent the jurisdictioun of the Commissariat of Edinburgh, and quherin they middle with the jurisdictioun of the Kirk: Seeing the matter hes takin some reasoning betuixt the [same] brethren appointit and the [same] Commissars, and farther reasoning ȝet requyrit, the Kirk ordaines Mrs David Lindsay, Robert Pont, James Lowsone, with the Pryour of Pittenweime, to travell in the conference of this matter, and also vpon the particular of Barbara Keith, with such diligence as is possible, and to draw the reasoning to some point, quherof the Kirk may be informed at the next Assemblie.

[The same day compeired James Chisholme, Master Houshold to the Kings Majestie, and, in his Hienes name, desiring the Assemblie to continue all further proceeding against Mr Robert Montgomerie while three or four of the Kirk should conser with the Counsel, at what time the Assemblie should think good; not that his Majestie wes to trouble any good order of the Kirk, but that it might be done be their favour and good will: To the which desire the Assembly promised to give answer be their brethren which they should direct to that effect, and ordeaned Mr Thomas Smetone, Mr David Lindsey, Mr James Lawson, Mr Andrew Melvil, Mr Alexander Arbuthnet, to pass to his Majestie at afternoone, to give answer, in name of the Assembly, that they condescend to delay proceeding against the said Mr Robert, with the conditions following, viz., That Mr Robert Montgomerie should no wayes attempt sarder concerning the acceptatione of the Bishoprick of Glasgow; and that his Majestie will not trouble nor use farder process against any of the brethren for his admissione; and last, that the liberty of the Kirk be not prejudged, but the judgment of the said Mr Robert and his cause to pertain unto them; farder, if conference shall be required, to reason and conferr hereanent, and to report again to the Assemblie. Attour appoints the said Mr David and John Durie to communicat to his Grace the great feeds and disorder in all the countrie, and to desire order to be put thereto; as alswa concurrance of some of his Commissioners with such as the Assembly will deput on their part, to treat amity and reconciliatione betwixt parties. C.]

Sessio 20a.

The brethren sent to the Kings Majestie with the articles of accusatioun givin in agains Mr Robert Montgomerie, returnit his Majesties ansuer; That he had receivit them verie thankfullie, and was content that the accusatioun had proceidit against him as Minister: farther, that, in the heids of religioun, he aggried from his heart with the Kirk of Scotland; albeit in some heids of the Policie he was not ȝit resolvit: [attour as concerning the provisione of the Ministrie, he should hold hand thereto. C.]

The Generall Assemblie gives thair full power and commissioun to thair Right Honorable and lovit brether, the Laird of Braid, Andro Ker of Fawdounsyde, Mr Thomas Craig, Advocat, and John Johnstoun, Commissioners for Edenburgh, the Provest of Dundee, Alexander Scrymgeour ther, Alexander Ruthersuird, Commissioners of Aberdeine, Henry Adamsone, Commissioner of Perth, Robert Lichtoun, Commissioner of Montrois, the Ministers of the Kings house, the Ministers of Edenburgh, Mrs Robert Pont, David Lindesay, Andro Hay, Andro Melvill, Thomas Smeitoun, Patrick Adamsone, George Hay, David Fergusone, Adame Johnstoun, James Carmichaell, Johne Brand, or any aught of them, to present, [with all due reverence and submissioune,] to the Lords of the Articles of the Parliament, such heids, articles and supplicatiouns as are givin to them be the Kirk; [humbly requiring, in the name of the Assemblie, the samine to be considered, and laws and constitutiones to pass thereupon; and, to this effect, to travail effectuouslie with the Kings Majestie, Estates and Lords foresaids, and to treat, reason, and conferr thereupon, if neid be; as also, if it shall please his Majestie to appoint any reasoning concerning the heids of the Policie, betwixt and the nixt Assemblie, to dispute, reason, treat and conferr thereupon, if neid be, in name of the Assemblie, with such heids of the Policie, betwixt and the nixt Assemblie, to dispute, reason, tread and conferr thereupon, if neid be, in name of the Assemblie, with such as his Hienes shall name to that effect; and what herein shall be proceeded, to report again to the nixt Assembly: firme and stable holding and for to hold what their said brethren in the premises, or any eight of them, leads to be done.

According to the Act of the Assemblie made before noone, compeired Mr Andrew Polwart, and shew he had summoned Mr Robert Montgomerie at the house of William Montgomerie in this toune, where he lodges, where he left a copy, because he could not apprehend him personally; and sought him in the Abbey, and could not apprehend him. C.]

The Kirk ordainit Mr Andro Melvill to produce his witnesses in his accusation against Mr Robert Montgomerie; quho instantlie produceit Mr Robert Darroch, Minister at Drume, Mr David Weymis, John Craig, Patrick Adamsone, Johne Hewsone, Richart Wright, Thomas Buchannan, James Carmichaell. All thir witnesses being sworne and admittit, the Kirk, notheles, that the said Mr Robert sould not thinke him defraudit of any laufull defence in his absence, reservit any objectioun he hes aganis the persons of the saids witnesses, in cace he come vpon Monday at ten houres; and ordainit the said Mr Robert, because of his departing of this towne, to be instantlie examinat be David Fergusone, William Christesone, James Balfour, Johne Porterfeild, the Lairds Fawdounsyde and Careltoun, Mr Paul Fraser, or any thrie of them; and his depositioun to be put in wryte, and reportit to the Assemblie: and as for farther probatioun, if the said Mr Andro will take any vther tyme, ordainit him to warne Mr Robert therto.

Sessio 21a.

Anent the provisioun of the Kirk of Sanct Androes of a Pastour: The Kirk hes thocht it meitt that the Pryour and towne of Sanct Androes nominat ane of the brether quhom they have best lyking of, to serve the cure, and to propone him vnto the Ministers of the Kings House, the Ministers of Edenburgh, Mrs David Lindesay, Johne Brand, Adame Johnstoun, David Fergusone, Andro Melvill, William Christesone, the Lairds of Braid, Pilrige, Lundie, and Colluthie; to quhom, or any aucht of them, the Kirk gives commissioun to give assent in thair name thereto, and to place him ther; provydeing they find no lawfull impediment that may stay the placeing ther, or that they be not of ane of the Colledges quhom the Kirk exeimis for consideratiouns therfrom: And sicklyke, that, with thair advyce, the Minister presentit may be sufficientlie provydit; as als his Kirk, querfrom he is takin, be also staikit.

Sessio 22a.

Ordaines a supplicatioun to be made to the Kings Majestie and Lords of the Articles, That no Acts be past in Parliament, repugnant to the true Word of God, and namelie concerning Bischops, with sharp admonitiouns therin, to be pennit be Mrs Thomas Smeitoun and Andro Melvill; and the same to be presentit with the Articles the morne, at aucht houres, be Mrs James Lowsone, Andro Melvill, Andro Hay, David Lindsay, Thomas Smeitoun and Johne Brand.

[Anent the Elderships of Dalkeith and Melrose already established: The Kirk approves the same. C.]

Sessio 23a.

The Assemblie gives full power and commissioun to [their brethren of] the Presbyterie of Striveling to summound Mr Robert Montgomerie, Minister ther, befor them, and to try and examine his lyfe and conversatioun, and accusatiouns [to be] givin in theranent, with all [good and] possible diligence; and quhat they find therin, to report to the nixt Synodall Assemblie of Lauthiane, to quhom the Assemblie gives power to proceid against him, according to the tryall and process deduceit befor the said Presbyterie, vnder the paine of disobedience: Sicklyke, charges the said Mr Robert to continue in the ministrie of the Kirk of Striveling, and not to middle with any vther office or functioun in the Kirk, namely, in aspyring [or attempting] to the Bischoprick of Glasgow, agains the Word of God and actis of the Kirk, or [to trouble or] vexe any of his brether to admitt him thereto, vnder the paine of excommunicatioun to be layit against him: quhervnto if he dissobey, after tryall takin of his dissobedience be the said Presbyterie, the sentence of excommunication to be execute against him be them, with advyce and concurrence of Johne Durie, David Fergusone, Johne Duncansone, and Johne Dykis; and this charge to be intimat be the Moderatour of the Assemblie to the said Mr Robert, that he pretend no ignorance thereof.

[The brethren appointed to pen the supplicatione to the Kings Majestie and Lords of Articles, presented the same to the Assemblie: Being publickly red and allowit, were thoght good to be given in. Immediately the brethren were direct to present the same, with the articles: The tenour quherof is not sett downe in the originall. C. & B.]