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Mar Family History & Ancestry

Family Crest Motto: PANS PLUS (Think more)

Allow me to share a tale that unravels the remarkable history of your family, the Mars, rooted in the annals of Scotland’s ancient kingdoms and noble lineage. Mar, one of the seven timeless kingdoms of Scotland, was ruled by the illustrious ‘mormaers’, whose legacy transcends generations. In the charter bestowing life upon the Abbey of Scone in 1114, the name of the Mormaer of Mar, Rothri, emerges as the oldest known forebearer of this esteemed lineage. Rothri’s legacy was carried forward by Morgund, the second Earl of Mar, who made his mark by endorsing charters to the abbey of Dunfermline before 1152. The Earls of Mar, steadfast in their support for Robert the Bruce’s claim to the throne during the Wars of Independence, were intertwined with the historic narrative of Scotland. Your family’s ancestral seat, Kildrummy Castle, stands as a testament to their enduring presence and legacy.

Thomas, the ninth Earl, departed this world without heirs, leaving the title to his sister, Margaret, and subsequently to her daughter, Isabel. Isabel’s second husband, Alexander Stewart, the reputed offspring of the formidable Wolf of Badenoch, created a connection that later prompted a claim to the earldom by the royal crown. However, the independent title was reclaimed in 1562 through a charter granted by Mary, Queen of Scots, to John Erskine, the eighteenth Earl of Mar. In this era, the Mar surname seemed to have taken on a more common status, although it remained an essential thread in the tapestry of Scottish heritage. A prominent line traces back to David Mar, a notary and citizen of Aberdeen in 1598. Meanwhile, traces of the Mar name are found in Perthshire, as evidenced by a 1577 witchcraft accusation against Violet Mar.

John, the twenty-third Earl of Mar, emerged as a pivotal figure in the ill-fated Jacobite rising of 1715. Though this endeavor ended in disappointment, his legacy endures. John’s leadership during the uprising has been scrutinized, and while the outcome was not favorable, it stands as a testament to his dedication. The title faced a tumultuous path, its forfeiture and eventual restoration to John, the twenty-fourth of Mar, in 1824. His grandson, who later inherited the earldom of Kellie, faced complex succession challenges that ultimately led to a resolution via a second Act of Parliament. Through this intricate process, the ancient earldom of Mar found its way to the descendants of the twenty-sixth Earl’s sister, while a separate earldom of Mar was bestowed upon the Earl of Kellie, the chief of the Erskines. The story culminates with Margaret of Mar, the thirty-first Countess of Mar, stepping into her role as the current chief of the Mars, preserving and perpetuating the family’s legacy. Your family’s journey is one of resilience, honor, and enduring significance in the tapestry of Scottish history.

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Family Crest Motto: PANS PLUS (Think more)

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