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Jardine Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: CAVE ADSUM (Beware I am Present)

Let me tell you the captivating history of your family, the Jardines. Your family name is derived from the French word “jardin,” meaning ‘garden’ or ‘orchard.’ The Jardines of Bonshaw have a rich and intriguing history that spans centuries. The journey begins with the arrival of the family of du Jardin in England alongside William the Conqueror in 1066. Although the name first appears in Scotland in charters before 1153, little is known about the origins or life of Humphrey de Jardin, who witnessed a charter around 1178. Another form of the name, ‘de Gardinus,’ is also found. Patrick de Gardinus served as chaplain to the Bishop of Glasgow in the early thirteenth century.

The chiefly line of your family seems to have been established at Applegirth, situated on the River Annan in Dumfriesshire, by the fourteenth century. The ancestral stronghold of the Jardines was Spedlings Tower, which was eventually abandoned in the late seventeenth century. Legend has it that the family relocated across the River Annan to Jardine Hall to escape the ghost of an unfortunate miller who had been left to starve in the tower’s dungeon. During the Wars of Independence, the Jardines, following the Johnstones, supported Mary, Queen of Scots, until her marriage to Bothwell. They then pledged their allegiance to the infant King James IV. In recognition of their contributions, Sir Alexander Jardine was granted a Baronetcy of Nova Scotia in 1672.

The fourth Baronet, who was born in 1712, embraced the Catholic faith and lived on the Continent. Taking a vow of celibacy, he became a knight of the Sovereign Order of Malta. After his passing in 1790, he was succeeded by his brother, Sir William. One of Sir William’s nephews, Frank Jardine, married Princess Sana, the niece of Moliatoa, the king of Samoa, in 1873. Another notable member of your family, Dr. William Jardine, embarked on a career as a surgeon for the East India Company in the Far East. In 1827, he formed a partnership with James Matheson, establishing the successful Jardine Matheson trading empire, particularly flourishing after the Opium Wars secured a British presence in Hong Kong.

In addition to the Bonshaw branch, there were other notable figures in your family’s history. The Reverend John Jardine, born in 1716, was an esteemed clergyman and a member of Edinburgh’s intellectual and literary elite. He played a significant role in launching the critical journal, the Edinburgh Review, and was appointed dean of the Order of the Thistle and a royal chaplain. His son, Sir Henry Jardine, served as the Deputy King’s Remembrancer in the Exchequer for Scotland and was present when the Honours of Scotland, the Scottish Crown Regalia, were rediscovered in Edinburgh Castle in 1818. These precious treasures had been concealed since 1707 to prevent their removal to England following the Union of the Parliaments.

Your family, the Jardines, have left an indelible mark throughout history with their achievements, alliances, and contributions in various fields. From their early origins tied to William the Conqueror to their involvement in battles, their presence spans from Scotland to far-flung places such as Hong Kong and Samoa. It is a legacy that you can proudly claim, showcasing the resilience, diversity, and remarkable accomplishments of your ancestors over generations.

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Family Crest Motto: CAVE ADSUM (Beware I am Present)

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