Lyon Clerk and Keeper of the Records
The arms of office of the Lyon Clerk
|Governing body||Court of the Lord Lyon|
|Chief officer||Elizabeth Roads, Lyon Clerk|
Lyon Clerk and Keeper of the Records is a legal and heraldic office in Scotland. The holder of this office is appointed by the Crown, and like the Lord Lyon King of Arms receives an annual salary. Lyon Clerk's duties include heraldic research, the preparation of papers, lectures and conducting and assisting with the preliminary business of application for a grant or matriculation of armorial bearings. This includes scrutiny of documents supporting the application. As Keeper of the Records the duties include maintaining the records of the Court of the Lord Lyon, overseeing the preparation of documents, allowing inspection of the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland and other records, and issuing certified extracts when required. Until 1867 there was a Lyon Clerk Depute, and in 1986 Elizabeth Ann Roads became the first woman appointed to the office of Lyon Clerk and Keeper of the Records.
In 1669 the Parliament of Scotland passed the Lyon King of Arms Act of 1669, the act confirmed the privileges and emoluments of the: '"Lyon King at Armes and his breethren heraulds and pursevants their Clerk of Court and thair successors". The Lyon King of Arms Act of 1672 mentioned the 'Lyon Clerk' as one of the recipients of all documents, on behalf of the Lord Lyon King of Arms.
The Lyon Clerk, together with the Lord Lyon King of Arms, the Procurator fiscal, the Herald painter and the Macer of the Court constitutes the Court of the Lord Lyon. The Lyon Court is a part of the Scottish judiciary and deals with the subject of heraldry and genealogy in Scotland. The Lyon Clerk assists the Lord Lyon in both his ministerial and judicial work. The Lyon Clerk is appointed by the Crown through the Royal sign-manual, the appointment is then published in the Edinburgh Gazette. The Lyon Clerk's salary is paid for by the Crown. This has been the case since the Lyon King of Arms Act of 1867, when the whole of the Lyon Court and Her Majesty's Officers of Arms were formally made into civil servants. Prior to this reform the Lyon Clerk received fees for every grant and matriculation. In 1837 the Lyon Clerk is paid £19 6s. for a grant of arms with supporters and £15 15s. without, for a matriculation £4 10s. 6d with supporters and £2 17s. without.
The Lyon Clerk have a prominent role in the operations of the Lyon Court. Every submission of application for a grant of arms, a matriculation of arms or the recording of genealogy must be made through the Lyon Clerk. This submission must be done either personally, by an intermediary agent or by correspondence, the Lyon Clerk is required to personally interview and reply to each applicant. As such the Lyon Clerk must take receipt of all documents and evidence submitted by the applicant in each case. Finally after the grant or matriculation has been made the Lyon Clerk must ensure that the resulting patent of arms is properly illuminated and emblazoned for the applicant and for the Lyon Court's register.
As Keeper of the Records, the Lyon Clerk is responsible for the maintenance of the Public Register of All Arms and Bearings in Scotland. This is done through the regular addition of new grants and matriculations. The Lyon Clerk must ensure that members of the public have access to the register by facilitating searches and studies of the records.
Lyon Clerks and Keepers of the Records
|(1584)||James Purdy of Kinnaldies||Islay|
|1587 January 4||John Purdie||Ross|
|(1594)||James Borthwick, WS||Rothesay|
|1630||Robert Watson, WS, of Newhall|
|1663 August 8||Robert Smith of Gibliston|
|1715 June 4||Charles Erskine||Bute|
|1724 June 6||David Erskine||Rothesay|
|1769 December 8||Thomas Brodie, WS||Lyon Depute|
|1770 November 2||Robert Boswell, WS|
|1804 May 4||James Home, WS||Lyon Depute|
|1819 February 3||David Clyne, SSC|
|1823 April 1||Edward William Auriol Drummond Hay|
|1845 May 5||Alexander Macdonald (interim)|
|1848 November 7||James Lorimer (interim)|
|1864 May 3||James Lorimer (for life)|
|1890 March 6||James William Mitchell||Rothesay||[a]|
|1898 September 3||Francis James Grant, WS||Rothesay||[b]|
|1929 September 4||Harold Andrew Balvaird Lawson, CVO||Rothesay||[c]|
|1966 August 4||Malcolm Innes of Edingight, CVO, WS||Carrick
|1981 July 9||John Inglis Drever Pottinger, LVO||Islay||[e]|
|1986 February 5||Elizabeth Ann Roads, LVO||Linlithgow
Lyon Clerks Depute
In 1867 the office of Lyon Depute was abolished.
|(1675)||Robert Innes, WS|
|1751 May 6||William Richardson|
|1755 April 17||Robert Donaldson||Marchmont|
|1769 July 29||William Walker||Marchmont|
|1770 November 17||James Cumyng||Herald painter|
|1773 November 7||Robert Ranken|
|1794 December 24||William Boswell|
|1796 September 7||Alexander Liston Ramage|
|1799 January 12||John Blair|
|1801 January 23||Alexander Boswell|
|1804 May 2||Thomas Small||Marchmont|
|1807 June 20||John Edward Touch|
|1807 August 25||David Clyne (joint)|
|1812 August 25||Alexander Lambe Robertson
William Thomson (joint)
|1819 November 5||De Carteret Mendell|
|1823 May 17||William Smith|
|1825 September 7||Archibald Duncan|
|1828 November 8||William Anderson||Marchmont|
|1829 June 3||Alexander Macdonald|
|1845 May 7||William Anderson||Marchmont|
|1863 June 29||John Whyte|
|1864 May 9||Robert Riddle Stodart|
|1886 June 4||James William Mitchell||Rothesay|
- "No. 26030". The London Gazette. 7 March 1890. p. 1268.
- "No. 27012". The London Gazette. 7 October 1898. p. 5863.
- "No. 33534". The London Gazette. 13 September 1929. p. 5904.
- "No. 18483". The Edinburgh Gazette. 12 August 1966. p. 630.
- "No. 20951". The Edinburgh Gazette. 31 July 1981. p. 1023.
- "No. 21892". The Edinburgh Gazette. 21 February 1986. p. 247.
- "Court Activity 2010". Court of the Lord Lyon. Retrieved 2012-03-12.
- "Badges of the heralds of the Commonwealth & Ireland". White Lion Society. Retrieved 2012-03-12.
- Parliament of Scotland (1669). "Lyon King of Arms Act of 1669". Acts of the Parliament of Scotland. 1669 c. 95. Retrieved 2012-03-11.
- Parliament of Scotland (1672). "Lyon King of Arms Act of 1672". Acts of the Parliament of Scotland. 1672 c. 47. Retrieved 2012-03-12.
- Stevenson p.51
- Parliament of the United Kingdom (1867). "Lyon King of Arms Act of 1867". Acts of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, 1860–1879. 1867 c. 17 (Regnal. 30 and 31 Vict). Retrieved 2012-03-12.
- Great Britain Parliament, House of Commons (1837). House of Commons papers, Volume 39. London: HMSO. p. 16.
- Stevenson p.52
- Stevenson pp.447–448