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Clan Guthrie

Clan Guthrie is a a Scottish chiefly family

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The family of Guthrie took their name from the lands of the same name in the county of Angus, Scotland and their name is one of the oldest in that county. <ref>George Way of Plean and Romilly Squire, Scottish Clan and Family Encyclopedia, 154</ref> The origin of the name Guthrie is not known, although there is a traditional origin legend that the lands were named Guthrie by an early king of Scots, after a fisherman gut three fish to serve his hungry monarch.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> A more likely origin lies in the Gaelic 'gaothairach', meaning 'windy place'.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Around 1178 William the Lion granted the lands of Gutherin to Arbroath Abbey. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> The family, who were royal falconers, subsequently purchased these lands.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref>

Middle Ages

In 1299 the Laird of Guthrie led a successful mission to France to invite Sir William Wallace to return to Scotland.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Despite the loss of the family's early charters it seems certain they obtained the Barony of Guthrie by charter from David II (1324-1371).<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Alexander Guthrie of Guthrie is recorded as witnessing a charter by Alexander Seaton, the lord of Gordon, in August 1442.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref>In 1446 he gained the lands of Kincaldrum near Forfar and became Ballie of Forfar. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> The real 'empire builder' was Sir David Guthrie of Guthrie (d.1479?) who became armour bearer to James II and later rose to high favour with James III. <ref></ref> He became Lord Treasurer of Scotland in 1461, during James III's minority. In 1466 he became comptroller of the household. In 1472 he was a Scottish representative in peace talks with England. <ref></ref> In 1468 he obtained a charter to build a castle at Guthrie.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Greatly increasing the family estates, he also founded a collegiate church at Guthrie, the dedication of which was confirmed by Papal Bull in 1479. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref>

His eldest son, Sir Alexander Guthrie, died at Flodden in 1513.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Later in the century the Guthries opposed Mary Queen of Scots on religious grounds, signing a bond in 1567 upholding the authority of her infant son, James VI.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> During this period a later Alexander Guthrie of Guthrie was assassinated at Inverpeffer during a local feud. The family were absolved of any blame for their retaliations by a royal pardon granted in 1618.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref>

Seventeenth Century

In 1636, John Guthrie, Bishop of Moray became the 11th chief. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> This brought the chiefly family into the heart of conflicts over religious doctrine and royal power. He had been ordained at Perth, and had become minister of St Giles in Edinburgh in 1621. In 1623 he was consecrated Bishop of Moray and took up residence at Spynie Castle, the Palace of the Bishopric. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> The king's attempts to alter the style of worship in the Scottish Church by re-introducing Episcopalianism eventually led to the outbreak of open hostilities, and in 1640 the bishop was forced to surrender his castle to forces under Colonel Monroe.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> He retired to his own estates of Guthrie, where he died in June 1643.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref>

His third son, Andrew Guthrie, fought with Montrose and was taken prisoner at the Battle of Philiphaugh.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> He was sentenced to death and beheaded by the Scottish guillotine- 'the maiden', at St Andrews in January 1646.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref>His daughter, Bethia, married her kinsman, Francis Guthrie of Gagie, and thus the title and estates remained in the Guthrie family.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref>

James Guthrie, a scion of the chiefly house, was a Covenanter minister who became one of the movement's early martyrs.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 154</ref> Ordained the minister of Lauder in 1638, he moved to Stirling in 1649, where he preached openly against the king's religious policies. He was in due course summoned before the Church of Scotland's General Assembly, whose authority he challenged, and for this was stripped of his office.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref>He continued, however, to preach with great zeal, until he was arrested in February 1661. The trial was a farce and its outcome predetermined: James Guthrie was sentenced to death and was executed in June 1661. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> <ref>Michael Lynch, Scotland: A New History, 287</ref>

Nineteenth Century

John Douglas Guthrie of Guthrie severed as a cavalry officer during the Egyptian campaign of 1882.<ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia, 155</ref> Lietenant Ivan Guthrie of Guthrie (1886- 1964) was the last chief to live at Guthrie castle. He was a distinguished soldier who commanded the 4th Battalion the Black Watch and was awarded the Military Cross. <ref></ref> The present chief lives in Italy and Guthrie castle was bought by the Pena family in 1984. <ref>Plean, Squire, Encyclopedia (updated text)</ref> <ref></ref>