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The Edmonstone Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: VIRTUS AUGET HONOREM (Virtue increases honour)

Let me share with you the fascinating history of your family, the Edmonstones. Your family has a close association with the Stewart dynasty and takes its name from the lands of Edmonstone in Midlothian, Scotland. It is believed that the Edmonstones are originally descended from the Seton family. The first recorded use of the name dates back to 1248 when Henricus de Edmonstone witnessed a charter during the reign of Alexander III.

Sir John de Edmonstone, a noteworthy figure at the courts of David II and Robert II, served on various embassies to England. His eldest son, also named John, married Isabella, the daughter of Robert II and the widow of the Earl of Douglas. In 1430, their grandson James Edmonstone was knighted at Holyrood as part of the celebrations marking the christening of James I’s twin sons. The main branch of your family, known as ‘of that Ilk,’ had a strong association with Edmonstone in Midlothian until it was sold in 1624. They subsequently moved to Ednam in Roxburghshire. However, James Edmonstone, the last male member of this senior line, passed away in 1772.

The Edmonstones of Duntreath trace their lineage to a younger son of Sir John de Edmonstone. In 1406, Sir Archibald played a role in escorting the surviving son of King James to safety in France. Unfortunately, the ship was captured by English raiders, and Prince James was held captive in London for many years. In 1411, Sir Archibald was entrusted with delivering correspondence from the imprisoned king, urging the Scottish Parliament to negotiate his release. Upon James’ return to Scotland, he rewarded William, the son of Archibald, with confiscated lands from the Albany Stewarts, including Duntreath in Lennox. William Edmonstone married Mary, Countess of Angus, who was the king’s sister. Following the assassination of the king in Perth in 1437, the Edmonstones aligned themselves with the dispossessed Albany Stewarts. William Edmonstone married Matilda Stewart, the granddaughter of the Earl of Lennox. In 1565, another William Edmonstone was appointed a Lord of the Privy Council to commemorate Queen Mary’s marriage to Lord Darnley.

Sir James, the successor to William, was implicated in a conspiracy against the young James VI. He later planned the family’s emigration to the Plantation in Ulster. Archibald, the ninth laird, was arrested and imprisoned by James VII. He subsequently fought against the king at the Siege of Derry. In 1784, the Edmonstones sold their estate in County Antrim. In the late nineteenth century, the Castle of Duntreath underwent restoration and expansion, transforming it into a magnificent country residence.

Your family, the Edmonstones, has a rich heritage intertwined with Scottish royalty, diplomatic missions, and even involvement in historical events like the Siege of Derry. The resilience and accomplishments of your ancestors have left a lasting legacy that continues to be cherished today.

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The Family Crest

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Family Crest Motto: VIRTUS AUGET HONOREM (Virtue increases honour)

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