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Herries Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: DOMINUS DEDIT (the Lord has given)

Let me share with you the captivating history of your family, the Herries. According to a family legend, your ancestors can be traced back to the Counts of Vendome in France, who, like the Scottish Herries, displayed three hedgehogs on their coat of arms. However, this connection is likely coincidental rather than factual. It is more probable that the Scottish Herries are a branch of the Anglo-Norman family of Heriz, originating from Nottinghamshire. They arrived in Scotland during the reign of David I as adventurous knights who assisted David in claiming his throne through invasion.

The earliest mention of the Herries family in Scotland dates back to Nigel de Heriz, who witnessed charters before 1152. During the reign of Alexander II, Nigel de Heris held lands in Ettrick. William de Herris swore allegiance to Edward I of England and is listed on the Ragman Roll of 1296 for his lands in Dumfriesshire. Sir Herbert Herries of Terregles was arrested alongside Murdoch, Duke of Albany, in 1425 but was later released. He accompanied Princess Margaret of Scotland on her journey to France to marry the heir to the French throne. Sadly, his brother John Herries met a tragic fate and was hanged due to a dispute with the influential Earl of Douglas. Sir Hubert Herries of Terregles became a Lord of Parliament in 1498, assuming the title “Lord Herries.” His son Andrew, the second Lord Herries, perished at the Battle of Flodden along with many others.

Herbert Herries, the first Lord Herries of Terregles, played a significant role at the courts of James III and James IV. However, it is believed that this family carried a hereditary illness, as in 1478 Herries and other close relatives acted on behalf of his mentally incapacitated grandfather. Herbert was knighted in 1493 and elevated to the title of “Lord Terregles” in 1483, likely in recognition of his efforts to maintain royal authority in the southwest of Scotland. He and his wife Mariot Carlyle had four sons and one daughter. William, the third lord, passed away in 1543, and the title was inherited by his daughter Agnes, who married Sir John Maxwell, a younger son of Robert, Lord Maxwell. The Maxwells eventually became Lords of Nithsdale and incorporated the Herries coat of arms into their own. In later times, the Herries name became associated with banking. Sir Robert Herries, a London financier, was descended from the Herries of Halldykes family. Another member of the family, John Charles Herries, briefly served as Chancellor of the Exchequer between 1827 and 1828. His son, Charles Herries, followed in his footsteps as a banker.

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Family Crest Motto: DOMINUS DEDIT (the Lord has given)

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