Tron (Scotland)

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Reconstructed tron in the village of Stenton, East Lothian

A tron was a weighing beam in medieval Scotland, usually located in the marketplaces of burghs. There are various roads and buildings in several Scottish towns that are named after the tron. For example, Trongate in Glasgow and Tron Kirk in Edinburgh. Etymologically the word is derived from the Old French tronel or troneau, meaning "balance".[1]

Measurement of weight in medieval Scotland[edit]

From the 12th century the city fathers of Scottish burghs needed to standardise weights and measurements, partly to collect the correct taxation on goods, and partly to stop unscrupulous merchants shortchanging citizens. Trons were set up in marketplaces throughout Scotland, with each burgh with its own set of, sometimes differing, weights.[1] Some burghs had more than one tron; in Edinburgh a butter tron was located at the head of the West Bow, while a salt tron was located further down the Royal Mile.[2][3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Scottish Weights and Measures: Background". SCAN Weights and Measures Guide. Scottish Archive Network.
  2. ^ "Weigh House or Butter Tron". Capital Collections. City of Edinburgh Council.
  3. ^ "Edinburgh, High Street, Tron". CANMORE. Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland.