Durie Timeline

Back Home Up Next

Durie History
Arms & Tartan
Duries Worldwide
Durie Genealogy
Durie Bookshelf
Durie Merchandise
News and Newsletters
Durie Gallery
Archive Materials
Site Map and Search
Useful Links
Legal & Copyright
Privacy Policy

Durie Timeline

Durie family events

Scottish history events


6000 BC
Evidence of settlements in Tenstmuir, Fife

3,000 BC
Neolithic Settlements, including Beaker People and Skara Brae on Orkney

1000 BC - 100 BC
Picts reach Scotland, probably from mainland Europe ?

1st C BC
More than 400 Brochs (thick-walled circular towers) built in far north

Pre-Roman times
Picts living in Pictavia (north of the Clyde and Forth.
Later, Scots (originally Scotii from Ireland) lived in Dalriada (north of Strathclyde)
Britons lived in Strathclyde
Angles living in Goddodin and Bernicia (present day Lothian & Borders, south to Hadrian's Wall)
Together, they were called the Caledonii by the Romans.

80 AD
Julius Agricola crossed the River Clyde fighting off  Celts

Celtic tribes unite under Calgacus, who is killed (along with 10,000 men) fighting Agricola at Ardoch (battle of Mons Graupius). The Romans lost 340 men.

Emperor Hadrian starts building Hadrian's Wall to defend the Romans from the Scots & Picts. It is 117 Km long, from Bowness to Wallsend ( between the Tyne and Solway Firth.
The wall was intended to hold back the Caledonians...but didn't

139 - 142
Antonine's Wall built (known as Graham's Dyke).

c. 185
Antonine Wall abandoned. Defeat of Romans in Caledonia - they retreat behind Hadrian's Wall - and the beginning of the decline and fall of the Roman Empire

Picts first mentioned in Roman literature. The name "Pict" is said to come from a Latin word meaning "painted people" because they tattooed their bodies with patterns in coloured vegetable dyes.

Roman literature described the warring tribe based in Ireland as the "Scots" 
Birth of St. Ninian - first known Christian missionary in Scotland. He lived on the shores of the Solway Firth.

Picts and Scots invade northern England.
Pict, Scot and Saxon tribes attack the Romans in London and plunder their treasures.

St.Ninian, the first missionary whose name is known, arrives in Whithorn in Galloway,  although there were probably already Christian settlements. Died 432.

Roman General Theodosius drives the Picts and Scots out of Roman Britain.

Birth of St. Patrick (Patron Saint of Ireland). Said to have been born near Kirkpatrick on the River Clyde. He went to Ireland 0432. Died 0461.

412 Romans leave the British Isles.

Gaelic-Speaking Christian Scots, led by Fergus McErc, leave Ireland and build their kingdom of Dalriada in Argyll on the West coast & Isles of Scotland with their capital at Dunadd.

Birth of St. Kentigern (St. Mungo)  at Culross, Fife, where his mother, St Thenog (St Enoch) was given sanctuary - Apostle of Cumbria and founder of Glasgow, he reportedly died 613.

c. 550
Anglian (Angles) settlement in south-east Scotland.

Columba (0521-597), an Irish missionary, founds a monastery on the Island of Iona to convert the Picts to Christianity. Later sanctified.

Battle of Catterick - 300 Edinburgh horsemen killed by the English.

King Aidan of Dalriada dies.

Edwin becomes king of Northumbria (to 633)  and founds Edinburgh

Synod of Whitby - Roman Christianity wins out over Celtic Church.



Battle of Nechtansmere (at Drunnichen, Forfarshire) - The King of the Picts Bridei III defeats Egric of Northumbria and  the Picts led by Nechtan. Nechtan had rejected the Celtic Church in favour of the Roman church. This established Scotland's southern border.

Roman Christianity established in Pictland.

Nechtan becomes first Pictish King to fully embrace Christianity

Vikings (Danes) plunder Iona

Kenneth MacAlpin (son of Alpin) King of Scots, claims the throne of Pictavia. His grandmother had been a Pictish princess. He unites the Scots and Picts as one nation known as Scotia or Alba. This was the first step in creating a united Scotland. Although never crowned, he was known as Kenneth I and reigned until 860.

Kenneth's brother Donald becomes Donald I (reigned 0890-0863).

Kenneth's son Constantine becomes Constantine I (reigned ca 863-877).

Constantine assassinates 'Run' King of Strathclyde and his brother-in-law. The southern regions of what is now Scotland, becomes part of Scotia/Alba

Kenneth's second son, Aed (Aodh) becomes king (reigned 877-878). He is killed at Dundurn, Perthshire, by his cousin, Giric (the son of Donald I, also known as Gregory the Great)

Eochaid (Eocha) - the son of the Ku, King of Strathclyde (son of Alpin's daughter) - becomes king. Reigned 878-889.

Constantine's son Donald becomes Donald II (reigned 889-900). He spens much of his reign fending off the Danish in the north led by Sigurd the Mighty and the Danish in the south led by Guthrum. He died near Forres (suspected poisoning).

Constantine II,  eldest son of Aed (Aodh), reigns 900-943).

Battle of Brananburgh - The Saxon King Athelstane defeats the Danes, Celts and Britons (Scots) near Solway. He takes the title of King of all Britain.

Constantine II abdicates after watching his armies defeated and his kingdom getting smaller, . He spent the rest of this life in a monastery.

Constantine's second cousin, Malcolm (son of Donald II) becomes Malcolm I (reigned 943-954). After his return from a crusade in 0954, Malcolm's own northerly regions revolted. They kill him at Fordoun in the Mearns in 954.

Indulf, the son of Constantine II, becomes king (reigned 954-962). He captures the fortress at Dun Eden (Edinburgh), defeating Edwin the Anglian. The Scots annex Cumberland and Westmorland from the English.

Dubh (Duff), son of Malcolm I, becomes king (reigned 962-967). He is killed by Culen (Colin), Indulf's son, at Forres, Moray.

Culen (Colin) becomes king (reigned 967-971).

Kenneth, second son of Malcolm I, becomes Kenneth II (reigned 971-995).

Kenneth II defeated the Danish Vikings.

Last recorded Viking raid on Iona.

Culen's son, Constantine, becomes Constantine III (reigned 995-997). The cause of his death at Rathinveramon is not known, suspected murder by Kenneth III.

Dubh's (Duff) son, Kenneth, becomes Kenneth III (reigned 997-1005)

Kenneth II's son, Malcolm, kills Kenneth III at Monzievaird. 
He becomes Malcolm II (reigned 1005-1034).

1005 MacBeth  born

Battle of Mortlach, Banffshire - Malcolm II defeats the Danes.

Malcolm II gains Lothian , with the help of Owen the Bald (King of fhe Strathclyde Britons), after defeating the Saxons at the Battle of Carham. Owen the  Bald is killed. He struck a bargain with the English that Lothian and South of the Clyde would be his as long as he didn't change the traditions and language of the area. Thus the border between Scotland and England was formed. He did not have any sons, so he named Duncan (the son of his eldest daughter, Bethoc) to be king. To ensure that his line remained, he slaughtered all the remaining male descendants of Kenneth III.

MacBeth's father, Finlaech MacRuaridh, is slain by his nephews Gillecombain & Malcolm.

MacBeth is elected Mormaer of Moray

Duncan I (MacCrinan), already ruler of Strathclyde, kills his grandfather Malcolm II at Glamis and becomes King of a largely united Scotland. He encourages families of Norman origin to move from England to Scotland. He reigned 1034-1040

MacBeth (a chief, born 1005) kills Duncan I in a battle at Bothnagowan and becomes King. It is thought that he was instrumental in the killing of his other cousin, Gillacomgain. 
MacBeth married Gillacomgain's widow who already had a son named Lulach. He reigned 1040-1057.

Malcolm Canmore (meaning 'big head') also known as Malcolm MacDuncan (Duncan I's son), kills MacBeth at the Battle of Lumphananand. Macbeth's stepson, Lulach (aka: 'the Fool'), reigns for one year before being killed by Malcolm.

Malcolm becomes King Malcolm III. Reigned 1058-1093.


It is often said that the first Durie in Britain was a companion of William the Conqueror called du Ry or Du Roi, but there is no evidence of this. If so, he may have come from the village of Ry 20Km East of Rouen. It is also close to Douai (site of the Scots College) in France.

Ry is a picturesque village in the Vallée du Crevon in Seine-Maritime (76) - Normandie.

Today it has 615 inhabitants
It is 120 km from Paris and 20 km from Rouen. It inspired Flaubert to write Madame Bovary.

There is an alternative suggestion, that the Duries came to Scotland with Queen Margaret in (See 1066) but again, there is no proof. Margaret , with her brother Edgar Aetheling and her  mother and sister,  landed near Dunfermline (NOT shipwrecked, as the myth goes) and married King Malcolm. This was probably a pre-arranged marriage to secure an alliance between Malcolm and the anti-Norman factions in England. See also 1119, 1200 and 1214

Malcolm III marries (Saint) Margaret, probably an arranged marriage to secure an alliance between Scotland and the Saxon claimants to the English crown. She brings Anglo-Norman and European (Hungarian)  influence to Lowland Scotland.

William the Conqueror invades Scotland. Malcolm III submits to him at Abernethy and  accepts him as overlord.


1087 William the Conqueror dies. His son, William Rufus, invades Cumbria and it becomes part of England.

Battle of Alnwick - Malcolm III and his wife Margaret killed by the English. Donald Bane (Malcolm's brother) reigns 1093-1094.

Duncan II declares himself king by hereditary right and reigns for one year before being killed. Donald Bane returns to reign (until 1097).

Edgar, born 1072, (second son of Malcolm III),  defeats Donald Bane (with the help of William II of England) and reigns 1097-1107. Edgar starts the Anglo-Norman ruling class in Scotland.

Magnus Barefoot claims the Western Isles.

First mention (it is often claimed) of the name "Durie".  This is a mistake based on the misreading of the motto on a coat of arms above the Archway of Rossend Castle.



On the death of Edgar, Scotland becomes disunited. Alexander I (born 1078, Edgar's brother) becomes King of Scots. Reigned 1107-1124.
Alexander's brother, David I, becomes King in Lothian and Strathclyde.

Alexander I dies. Unity restored when David I  (Alexander's brother, born 1084) becomes King of Scots. His reign was one of the most important in Scotland's history, extending Scottish borders to the River Tees, including all of Northumberland. Reigned 1124-1153.

Province of Moray forfeited to (annexed by) the Crown.

Battle of Northallerton (Battle of the Standard) - David I defeated and the Normans kill 10,000 Scots. He was fighting on behalf of Matilda - a claimant to the English throne, after the death of Henry I of England.

Malcolm IV 'The Maiden' (born 1141, grandson of David I) reigned 1153-1165.

William 'The Lion' (born 1143, brother of Malcolm IV) reigned 1165-1214.

William the Lion defeated by the English at Alnwick. The Treaty of Falaise signed, under which Scotland would be in debt to England for years.

Province of Ross subdued by William the Lion. Inverness receives Charter from William.

1192 Scottish Church becomes a special 'daughter' of the Roman See.

Richard de Doure is mentioned in a charter

ca. The Duries were settled in Fife and it is often said that they rose to prominence as administrators to Princess Joan, sister of Henry III of England, who married Alexander II (1214-49). But - again! - there is no proof of this. See 1200.

Alexander II (born 1198, son of William 'The Lion') reigned 1214-1249.

Alexander II conquers Argyll.

ca. The name Durie appears to be linked with the title of Dereth, the hereditary steward to the Abbot of Dunfermline. Robert, Abbot of Dunfermline, provided to "Symon, called Dereth, son of Thomas Dereth of Kynglassy".
They were granted the estate of Craigluscar (outside Dunfermline), and also the lands of Durie (in present-day Scoonie, Leven, (now owned by the Christie family) plus the lands in Burntisland where Rossend Castle was later built (see 1382)

Alexander II dies at Kerrera.

Alexander III (born 1241, son of Alexander II) reigned 1249-1286.


Queen Margaret  died in Edinburgh Castle on 16th November 1093. She was buried before the Altar of the Holy Cross in the church she had founded in Dunfermline. When St Margaret, Malcolm III's queen, was canonised in 1250 her body was translated from its original burial site inside Dunfermline Abbey to the east end of the Abbey church where it could be venerated by pilgrims.

Her skull was encased in a reliquary ­ a silver and gold likeness adorned with pearls, chains and precious stones. Her hair could be viewed through a crystal on the breast of the figure. (See 1560)

Raku-fired ceramic and glass reconstruction of Queen Margaret's head  reeliquary by Walter Awlson, DA of Alva. Sponsored by British Gas (Scotland).

-1271 Duncan of Durry witnessed a charter signed by Malise, Earl of Strathearn. He is presumed to be a descendant of Richard de Doure (see 1200).

Battle of Largs - King Haaken of Norway and his fleet beaten by the Scots. The Hebrides claimed from Norway.

ca. Gilbert Durie, son of Robert, Earl of Strathearn, received a grant of the lands of Durie from Reginald le Chene. Gilbert was the first Durie of that Ilk, but the name of Durie (from the lands, and possibly Gaelic meaning "black water") must already have existed.


Gilbert was the brother of Malise, Earl of Strathern, and received from him the lands of Belnallo in Foulis (Perth). This presumably means that Robert died in 1266 - 1268.

William Wallace born in Ellerslie.

Alexander III dies after a fall from his horse over a cliff. Margaret 'Maid of Norway' (born 1283, grand daughter of Alexander III, married to Erik II of Norway) reigned from 1286 to 1290 but died at sea on her way to Scotland to claim the throne. On the death of Margaret, there was no obvious heir.

A Malise de Dovary is recorded as being at Perth.

Edward I of England asked to decide who should rule. Robert Bruce was a claimant. Edward chose John Balliol (born 1249, great grandson of David, Earl of Huntingdon - who was brother of William I 'The Lion'). John Balliol reigned 1292-1296.

Signing of the "Auld Alliance" between Scotland and France - one of the world's oldest mutual defense treaties.

Battle of Dunbar - Balliol defies Edward I of England. Edward invades Scotland and defeats the Scots with 30,000 men and 5,000 cavalry. Annexation of Scotland by England. Scotland's "Stone of Destiny" or  "Stone of Scone" - removed to Westminster Abbey (in London) by  Edward I and used as the Coronation Stone.  (The stone was temporarily returned to Scotland in 1950 and permanently returned in 1996.)

William Wallace kills the Sheriff of Lanark, Hazelrig. He defeats the English army of Edward I at Stirling Bridge and becomes the "Guardian of Scotland".

Battle of Falkirk - William Wallace and his army defeated by the army of Edward I of England. Robert Bruce knights him at Selkirk Abbey.

English capture and execute William Wallace. He is hanged, drawn and quartered

Robert Bruce (1274-1329) a decendant of David I, murders John 'Red' Comyn at Greyfriar Abbey, Dumfries. Bruce'  leads a rebellion against English rule and is crowned Robert I at Scone. Reigned 1306-1329.

Robert Bruce's three brothers (Alexander, Nigel & Thomas) executed by Edward I. Robert  defeats the Earl of Pembroke at Louden Hill - his first major victory over the English.

Battle of Inverurie - King Robert the Bruce defeats Comyn of Buchan and the English.

Battle of Bannockburn - Robert the Bruce (with only 500 mounted men, 2,500 spearmen and 5,000 warriors, but possibly with the help of the Knights Templar) routs the English king Edward II and an army of 22,000.

John Balliol dies.

The Declaration of Arbroath drawn up to urge the Pope to recognise Scottish independence from England. The Pope accepted the Declaration.

The first Scottish Parliament meets.

Treaty of Northhampton signed between Edward III and Robert I. Scotland finally becomes independent from England and Robert Bruce officially recognised as  King.

Robert the Bruce dies at Cardross, possibly of leprosy. 
His son, David (born 1324) becomes David II. He reigned 1329-1371.

Battle of Dupplin - Scots (under Earl of Mar) were defeated by Edward Balliol (son of John Balliol). Balliol has the blessing of Edward III of England and is crowned at Scone.

Battle of Halidon - Edward III of England defeats the Scots (under Archibald Douglas).

David II exiled to France for seven years. Balliol pays homage to Edward III and gives up title to most of South Scotland.

Battle of Otterburn - Henry Percy and the English defeat the Scots under Douglas.

David II returns from France and Philip VI of France appeals for a counter invasion of England. Battle of Nevilles Cross - David II defeated and captured by the English.

The "Black Death" (Bubonic Plague) begins in Scotland.

David II released for ransom.

Michael de Douery witnessed transactions by Lord Wemyss.

Robert II 'The Steward' (born 1316, son of Marjory - daughter of Robert I 'The Bruce') reigned 1371-1390. he is the first Stewart or Stuart king.

Rossend Castle (Burntisland) built by the Laird of Durie.

Burntisland Castle has an armorial tablet bearing the Durie arms and the date . It is now an architect's offices and can be visited. The castle and most of the extensive Durie properties were confiscated at the reformation.

Battle of Otterburn - The English, led by Harry "Hotspur" and Ralph Percy (sons of the Earl of  Northumberland), defeated by the Scots, led by Sir James Douglas (2nd Earl of Douglas). James Douglas is killed,  Harry and Ralph Percy captured.

John, son of Robert, (born 1340) changes his name (due to bad omen associated with the name) to  Robert III. He was physically disabled. Reigned 1390-1406.

Battle of Homildon Hill, Northunberland, England - the Scots are defeated

James I (born 1394, son of Robert III) reigned from 1406 to 1437. He is captured at sea during  a truce and imprisonred in England.  Robert, Duke of Albany reigned as regent (1406-1420).

Battle of Harlaw - Donald, Lord of the Isles, defeated by an army of Lowlanders.

University of St. Andrews founded (influenced by the French culture, the curriculum was  Paris-based).

Henry V of England imposes rigid legal regulations over the use of Coat of Arms, due to the increase in the number of court cases relating to Heraldic disputes.

Murdock, Duke of Albany reigned as regent (1420-1424)

James I allowed to return to Scotland from captivity in England.

Parliament at Inverness - James I orders the imprisonment of fifty Highland Chiefs.

Battle of Druimnacoub - Inverness attacked and burned by Alexander, Lord of the Isles.

James I murdered by the great nobles at Perth. His son, (born 1430) becomes James II and reigned 1437 - 1460.

University of Glasgow founded

John Dury was a cleric in the St Andrews diocese.

James II killed by an exploding canon during the siege of Roxburgh (against the English).  His son James III (born 1451) reigned 1460-1488.

James III marries Margaret of Denmark.

St. Andrews raised to Archiepiscopal Status.

James III murdered by his son (James) during the Battle of Sauchieburn, after being accused of surrounding himself with evil advisers who encouraged him to bring Englishmen into Scottish affairs. James IV (born 1472) reigned 1488-1513.


George Durie, later Abbot of Dunfermline, was born

University of Aberdeen founded by historian Hector Boece (Boyce) of Panbridge.

Walter Doray was a Brother in Cupar Priory. (Cupar is in Fife)

King Henry VII of England marries his daughter, Margaret Tudor,  to James IV of Scotland. This ultimately gives rise to the Union of the Crowns (1603).

Under the terms of a treaty with France (the "Auld Alliance") all Scottish citizens become French citizens and vice versa.

Andrew Durie was vicar of Newtyle. (Probably later Bishop of Galloway, see below)

The Duries had been granted the estate of Craigluscar, near Leven, where a house, built in , has a stone shield bearing the Durie arms and the initials of a George Durie and his wife, Margaret Bruce. Craigluscar remained in the family until the 1900s.

Henry VIII of England rejects James IV's envoy. Battle of Flodden (Branxton) - King James IV defeated and killed, along with much of the Scottish aristocracy by the English (led by the 75 year old Earl of Surrey).

James V (born 1512, son of James IV) begins his 29 year reign 1513-1542. Because of his age, Scotland was ruled by a regent.

George Durie (see below) witnessed a ceremony in St Andrews.

James V's personal reign begins

Andrew Durie becomes Abbot of Melrose

- James Beaton, Abbot of Dunfermline, dies after only a year in office and George Durie is ordained Abbot.


John Durie, a cousin of Abbot George Durie, is born at Mauchline, Ayrshire. He married Marion Marjoribanks, daughter of Edinburgh's Lord Provost.

Rossend Castle, Burntisland, was built in 1382 and has an armorial tablet bearing the Durie arms and the date 1554. It is now an architect's offices and can be visited. The castle and most of the extensive Durie properties were confiscated at the reformation and the estates were sold around 1614 to Sir Alexander Gibson who, when he became a judge in 1621, took the judicial title Lord Durie.

Andrew Durie, Abbot of Melrose (1527) becomes Bishop of Galloway. He was despised by the reformer John Knox who called him "Bishop Stottikin, for his filthiness".

Battle of Solway Moss - James V is killed. Mary ' Queen of Scots' (the one week old daughter of James V) reigned 1542-1567 with her French mother (Mary of Guise) as her regent. Mary is sent to France for safety.

The "Rough Wooing" - England, pushing territorial ambitions through a proposed marriage and alliance, was sharply rebuffed, and thus resorted to the policy known as "rough wooing" and aggression towards Scotland. The Scot/English border wars and conflicts reached their height .

Battle of Pinkie - 15,000 English, under the Duke of Somerset, were defeated by the Scots.

Catherine Douglas, granddaughter of Lord John Erskine and daughter of Margaret Erskine (by whom King James V had the illegitimate James Stewart, later Regent Moray) and Robert Douglas, marries David Durie of that ilk. (Her brother George married a Margaret Durie and is also supposed to have had a secret marriage with Mary Queen of Scots at the end of her life. He murdered Mary Queen of Scots lover, Rizzio).

The first Covenant (Secret Scottish Protestant group).

1557 John Durie is a monk at Dunfermline Abbey, but being suspected of heresy by his cousin Abbot George Durie, he is sentenced to be confined for life. He is rescued by friends, who interceded with the Earl of Arran.


Andrew Durie, Abbot of Melrose (1527) and Bishop of Galloway (1541), dies of an apoplexy on hearing of the St Giles Day riots in Edinburgh. He was the last Catholic bishop of Galloway, and the see was vacant three hundred and twenty years.

Mary 'Queen of Scots' marries Francis, the Dauphin and heir to the French throne.

John Knox's sermon in Perth - regarded as the start of the Reformation in Scotland.

One George Durie was Chaplain at Inverkeithing and later (1574) Reader.

The turmoil of the reformation disrupted several Duries lives

Margaret McBeth, wife of Henry Durie of Craigluscar, was renowned for her skill with herbs and was a favourite of Anne of Denmark attending the births of the royal children born at the Palace of Dunfermline. It is said she saved the life of Charles I when other physicians had failed.

Queen Margaret's head shrine reliquary was sent to France for safety in the turbulent years of the Scottish Reformation. Reputedly, initially Abbot George Durie took the headshrine to either Rossend Castle or Craigluscar in 1560. In the shrine was handed to the Jesuits and then transported by one of them, John Robie, to Antwerp. Eventually it found its way to France but disappeared during the French Revolution in 1789.

Treaty of Berwick  between Elizabeth I of England and the Scottish reformers.

The Church of Scotland founded.

Treaty of Edinburgh - between England, Scotland and France.



John Durie is Exhorter in Parton, Galloway, later exhorter at Colinton and Restalrig then minister of Edinburgh in 1573

Mary returns to Scotland from France.

Mary's Witchcraft Act passed in Scotland, condemning "witches" to be burned as heretics.

Start of most OPRs (Old Parish Registers of Baptisms, Marriages, Deaths/Burials).

Janeta Durye has sassine of lands in Ayrshire

Mary marries her cousin Lord Darnley.

George Durie was suggested (along with the Bishop of Dunblane) to guide the Pope on his tour of Scotland. In 1564, Pope Pius IV sent his brief to George.

Lord Darnley murdered, possibly by Earl of Bothwell, who married Mary.

Mary forced to abdicate in favour of her son James (born 1566).

Sir Walter Dowary (alias Robertson) pirated a Swedish ship, but there is no good evidence he was of the same family.

James VI of Scotland reigned 1567-1603. ( He reigned as James I of Britain 1603-1625.)

1567-69 John Durie is Exhorter in Restalrig, Edinburgh,

Battle of Langside - Moray and 45,000 men defeat Mary with only 4,500 men.  Mary escapes to England to seek help from her cousin Elizabeth I of England. Elizabeth imprisons her.

(or possibly 1565 or maybe even 1570) George Durie, Abbot of Dunfermline, dies.


John Durie is Minister in Penicuik, near Edinburgh,

The Regent Moray is murdered by nobles.

1570-72 John Durie is Minister in Restalrig,

John Knox dies.

-79 John Durie is Minister at St Giles, Edinburgh, the primary church of Scotland


John Durie is imprisoned with Walter Balcanqual in Edinburgh Castle


a John Durie is a monk at Dunfermline (probably not the same one as above).


(23 May) John Durie is ordered to leave Edinburgh but got leave to return and on 4 September the people of Edinburgh met him at Leith and marched him up the High Street singing the 124th psalm.

University of Edinburgh founded.

John Durie Received of a pension of 140/- from the King. John, with Archie Stewart, was the last man to see John Knox alive (17 November; he died on 24 November).

Robert Durie was a minister in Anstruther. He explored the possibility of colonising Lewis with The Fife Adventurers. He attended a banned Assembly of the Church and was exiled to Holland. Died 1616. Eight sons, including John, a Lutheran reformer and Protestant divine.

Mary beheaded at Fotheringhay for treason.

Elizabeth Durie, daughter of David Durie of that Ilk, marries Sir James Wemyss of Bogie


(28 February) John Durie dies, in great peace of mind. He had also been a good athlete. He had three sons and three daughters, one of whom (Elizabeth) married James Melville in 1538. His grandson John (b 1596 in Edinburgh) became a Protestant crusader throughout Europe (see 1638).

Scotland adopts the Gregorian Calendar.

Joshua Durie is known to have been at Montrose in , Forfar in 1596, St Andrews in 1606, Inverkeillar in 1613, and was Ambassador to England for James VI. Joshua died in . His sons were John, Nicholas and others.


Elizabeth I of England dies.

James VI of Scotland becomes James I of England (the first Stuart King of England) bringing about the Union of the Crowns.

Simeon Durie was a Minister at Forgan in and Arbroath in 1628.

James (on his only return to Scotland) tactlessly lectures his countrymen on the "superiority of English civilisation".

The Durie estates in Durie, Scoonie, Leven, Fife were sold around by Henry Kemp-Durie to Sir Alexander Gibson whotook the judicial title Lord Durie, when he became a judge in 1621. Gibson had no family relationship to Durie.

See Gibson, Lord Durie


24  May (the day before the Great Fire of Dunfermline)  George Durie of Craigluscar is made a Burgess (freeman) of Dunfermline - "lykwys entered burges and frieman of ye said bruth gratis, and maid ye nytbrs aith" (the burgess oath).


James imposes Bishops on the Presbyterian Church of Scotland in an attempt to integrate it with the Church of England. This move is deeply unpopular with the Scots.

James VI, King of Great Britain died and his son Charles (born 1600) becomes Charles I. 
Although born in Scotland, Charles has no interest in the country and deals with Scottish affairs with even less tact than his father, causing discontent. Reigned 1625-1649.

Charles I of England crowned King of Scotland in Edinburgh.

Charles attempts to further anglicise the Church of Scotland by introducing a new prayer book, which caused riots at St. Giles in Edinburgh.

During the months of March and April  the National Covenant was subscribed this year at
Dunfermline by "the nobility, gentlemen, burgesses and community", among them James Durie of Craigluscar


John Durie (Dury), grandson of the earlier John Durie, becomes a persistent advocate of Protestant union. Born in Edinburgh 1596, he died at Cassel Sept. 26, 1689. His father left Scotland because of his opposition to the policy of King James VI, and Durie, having completed his studies in Oxford, accepted the position of minister of the English settlers at Elbing just after Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden captured the city. There he became acquainted with Swedish Lutherans and in 1628 began a careful study of the differences between the Lutherans and the Reformed with a view to a reconciliation. The English ambassador, Sir Thomas Roe,  became interested in Durie's plan and in 1630 sent Durie to England with an endorsement of his project to the moderates among the bishops. It seemed a favorable moment to send Durie to the Continent in the interest of ecclesiastical peace, and he thus began an activity of almost fifty years an an itinerant advocate of union between the Reformed and the Lutherans. Until the end of 1633 he traveled through Germany with letters of recommendation from Roe, as well as the Archbishop Abbot of Canterbury and other bishops and theologians. Gustavus Adolphus received him at Wiirzburg and promised him a letter of recommendation to the Protestant princes of Germany. In 1633 Durie was recalled to England by the death of Archbishop Abbot, whose successor, Laud, supported him only after he had joined the Anglican Church and had been ordained in it. Beginning in 1634, in Germany and Holland, in 1638 he was expelled from Sweden, but in 1639 he was in Denmark, where his reception was unfriendly, and in the following year he returned to Germany, associating chiefly with the dukes Augustus and George of Brunswick. 
The troubles in England called him home. From 1641 to 1644 he was an Anglican clergyman in The Hague, but in 1645, when Laud fell, he rejoined the Presbyterians. In the eventful years 1645-49 he took part in the drafting of the Westminster Confession and the Westminster Catechism, but refused to vote in favor of the king's death. He supported Cromwell's protectorate, joined the Independents, and was again sent to the Continent by Cromwell in 1654 where he visited Reformed theologians and statesmen in Switzerland, Germany, and Holland, and returned to England in 1657. Cromwell's death in 1658 and the restoration of 1660 interrupted all his efforts. With no more hope of governmental support of his plans for union, he could continue his work only in private and at his own risk. Despite his advanced age, he left England in 1661 and returned to his task of uniting the Protestant churches and of reconciling the Reformed and the Lutherans. He gained the sympathy of the Landgrave William VI. of Hesse-Cassel and the Elector Frederick William of Brandenburg, and after the early death of the former his widow, Hedwig Sophia, who ruled almost alone at Cassel from 1663 to 1683, remained Durie's patroness throughout the remainder of his life. 
The time was not yet ripe for an idea of ouch far-reaching importance, and thus Durie's life-work ended in apparent failure. In the dedication of a work on the Apocalypse of John (written in French and published at Frankfort, 1674) to his patroness, the landgravine of Hesse, he wrote: "The chief fruit of my labors is that I see that the misery of the Christians in far greater than the wretchedness of the heathen and other nations; I see the cause of the misery; I see the lack of remedy, and I see the cause of that lack. For myself, I see that I have no other profit than the witness of my conscience." 

Among Durie's numerous works were Sententiae de pacis rationibus inter evangelicos, ( 1638; Eng. transl., 1841); A Summary Discourse concerning the Work of Peace Ecclesiatical (Cambridge, 1641), presented to Sir Thomas Roe in 1639; A Memorial concerning Peace Ecclesiastical (London, 1641), addressed "to the king of England and the pastors and elders of the Kirk of Scotland meeting at 8t. Andrews"; An Epistolary Discourse (1644). concerning the toleration of independency; A Model of Church Government (1647): The Reformer Library Keeper (1660); An Earnest Plea for Gospel Communion (1654); A Summary Platform of the Heads of a Body of Practical Divinity (1654); Irenicorum tractatuum Prodromus (Amsterdam, 1674) and most famously. The Reformed Librarie-keeper,the first ever treatise on librarianship.

John Durie is often credited with the famous slogan 'In essentials, unity. In non-essentials, liberty. In all things, charity' but it wasn't his.

The National Covenant - Charles regarded protests against the prayer book as treason, forcing Scots to choose between 
their church and the King. A "Covenant", swearing to resist these changes to the death, was signed in Greyfriars Church in Edinburgh. The covenant was widely accepted by the Scots.

Charles calls a General Assembly, effectively abolishing the unpopular Scottish Bishops. First Bishops' War with England over religion ends with Pacification of Dunse.

The Second Bishops' War - Charles' peace collapses. The Scots Covenanting Army (led by David Leslie) marches on Newcastle and defeats the English army. Charles agrees to pay Scotland 850 pounds per day, until a settlement is reached.

Having no realistic chance of opposing the Scots, Charles negotiates a truce at Ripon.

Civil war breaks out in England. The Scottish Covenanters side with the English rebels who took power. The Earl of Montrose sides with King Charles, so civil strife also spills over into Scotland.

English Parliament signs the Solemn League and Covenant, which allies it with the Scots. The Scots provide military aid in return for 30,000 pounds.

Battle of Inverlochie - James Graham, Marquis of Montrose raises the clans to fight for Charles I against Argyle. 1,500 Campbells are killed, Montrose ravages Argyll but is defeated bat the Battle of Philiphaugh

Charles I gives himself up to the Scots. The Campbells massacre the Lamonts.

The Scots sell Charles I to the English Parliament for 400,000 pounds. He is kidnapped by the army and escapes. He makes a secret treaty - the "Engagement" - with dissident Scottish nobles and agrees to push Scottish Presbyterianism in return for lowland Scottish support and arms.

Battle of Preston - the Scots try to invade England, but are defeated by Oliver Cromwell.

Charles I tried and executed. Start of the Commonwealth era (1649-1660) - the crown ceased to be.

Charles Stuart (born 1630, son of Charles I) lands in Scotland and is proclaimed Charles II.
Battle of Invercharron - Marquis of Montrose lands a small army in Caithness, in an attempt to overthrow the Covenanters and the Parliamentary rule of Oliver Cromwell. Clan Mackenzie is  expected to support him, but does not.  He is routed at Carbisdale,  tries to escape but is captured by the men of Neil MacLeod (11th Chief). Montrose is hanged in the Grassmarket in Edinburgh.

Charles II crowned at Scone - the last coronation in Scotland.

Battle of Worcester - Charles II invades England with a Scots army. Cromwell defeats them. Charles escaped to France.

Scotland taken under the Protectorate (Cromwell).

Eric Durie wrote A Treatise on Moonlight.

1675 French Huguenots, exiled in Mannheim and Utrecht, set sail for America in the Ship the Gilded Otter. Among them are Joost Durie from Mannheim and Jean (or John) Durie (born around Nov 1654 in Utrecht). Their origin is said to be near La Rochelle.


In the late 17th century George Durie was a captain in Louis XIV’s Scots Guards and also later a provost of Dunfermline (re-elected 1684, 1685).


The Braye Manuscripts, the most important collection of 17th century parliamentary records to have passed into private hands, were accumulated by John Browne, Clerk of the Parliaments, 1638-91. After Browne’s death the papers were moved to Stanford Hall, the home of the Cave family, which eventually succeeded to the Barony of Braye. The Braye Manuscripts were purchased by the House of Lords Records Office in 1987. Amongst many manuscripts of significance are details of John Durie’s mission to the Continent, on behalf of Archbishop Laud, to effect a union between the Lutherans and the Calvinists.

English Parliament invites the exiled Charles II to return as King -  the Restoration of the crown.

Battle of Rullion Green - Covenanters defeated by General Dalyell.

Graham of Claverhouse defeated by the Covenanters.

Birth of Rob Roy MacGregor - notorious Jacobite (died 1734).

William of Orange marries Mary (daughter of James, Duke of York, heir to the English throne).












John Durie (Dury), grandson of the earlier John Durie (see 1638),  died at Cassel Sept. 26.























Andrew Durie wrote Disputatio Mathematica de Contactus Angelo.

National Library of Scotland founded. Now one of the UK's four copyright deposit libraries.

The Earl of Argyll invades Scotland but is captured and executed at Edinburgh.

Charles II dies and his brother James (born 1633 ) becomes James VII of Scotland and II of England. Reigned 1685-1688.

Seven lords invite William of Orange to save Britain from Catholicism. James VII and II flees to France. William  becomes William III and his wife Mary (Stuart) becomes Mary II (joint rulers) - called the Glorious Revolution. They state that no future rulers will be or marry Roman Catholics.

Battle of Killiecrankie - General Hugh Mackay defeated by Viscount Dundee (John Graham, Bonnie Dundee, Earl of Claverhouse) and his Highland army. Viscount Dundee mortally wounded. The battle was believed to have been caused by the murder of one of the General's troopers.

The massacre of Glencoe. Clan Campbell siding with King William of Orange, murdered members of Clan MacDonald. This was because the chief of MacDonald of Glencoe arrived six days late to swear an oath of loyalty to King William. The MacDonald chief was found guilty of treason. The Campbells swore to destroy the MacDonalds. King William fell out of favour with most of the Highlanders.

Reign of William III (IV)
William Paterson (a Scotsman) founded the Bank of England. 
He was also a leading advocate of the Darien Scheme, which is believed to have cost Scotland nearly half of its national wealth.

Bank of Scotland founded.

The Darien Expedition/Scheme - to compete with the English East India Trading Company, the Scots formed a similar organisation, Company of Scotland Trading to Africa and the Indies. Known in London as the Scottish East India Company, investors championed the proposal. It settled on the Isthmus of Panama (Darien) with some poor planning and when native Indians, Spaniards and disease nearly wiped them out, they called on the English fleet to rescue them. The English sent no help. Very few Scots survived.

James II dies in exile.

William III (of England) and II (of Scotland) - William of Orange dies. Anne (daughter of James II) becomes Queen. Reigned to 1714.

George Durie, Baron Rutherford, wrote The Moors Baffled.

Act of Union passed; Scotland formally united with England to form Great Britain. Although claimed to have been a peaceful and desired Union, it was met with riots in Edinburgh and the Highlanders never wanted Union with England. It was, in effect, "steamrollered" onto the Scots by Queen Anne. The Scottish Parliament was adjourned on the 25 March 1707 - for almost 300 years.

First Jacobite rebellion - Jacobites fighting for James Stuart (James VIII), the Old Pretender, defeated at the Battle of Sheriffmuir.

Queen Anne dies without leaving an heir. The throne has to go to a Protestant heir of James VI/I. George of Hanover, a great grandson of James I, becomes George I (born 1660, reigned 1714-1727).

George II (born 1683, son of George I) reigned 1727-1760

Black Watch raised to "keep an eye" on the Scottish Highlands.


The potato introduced into the Scottish Highlands.

The world's first Golf Club (the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers) was founded.

Prince Charles Edward Stuart 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' (born 1720, grandson of James VII) 
returns to Scotland. Second Jacobite rebellion begins. Scottish victory against Johnny Cope at the Battle of Prestonpans  Jacobite Scottish army advances as far south as Derby, but then retreats.

Battle of Falkirk - Jacobites defeat the English government troops.
Battle of Culloden - The Jacobites are routed by the government troops led by Cumberland Charles escapes to France where he dies 1788.

The wearing of the kilt is prohibited.

Samuel Durie wrote Dissertatio Physica de Sano Reflexo.

Birth of Robert Burns - writer of "Auld Lang Syne". He died 1796.

George II dies. George, the grandson of George II (born 1738) becomes George III. Reigned 1760-1820.

The first edition of the "Encyclopedia Britannica" published in Edinburgh by William Smellie

The Clyde Trust created to convert the River Clyde, which was at that time an insignificant river, into a major maritime thoroughfare. This required major excavation and dredging.

Sir Walter Scott born in Edinburgh (1771-1832).

Economist Adam Smith born in Kirkcaldy. Later publishes "The Wealth of Nations"

James Watt builds the separate condenser steam engine.

Highland Light Infantry raised.

Seaforth Highlanders raised.

The Highland Clearance begin.

Bonnie Prince Charlie dies

Cameron Highlanders raised.

Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders raised.
Gordon Highlanders raised.

Tenants removed to make way for sheep-farming in the Sutherland Clearance. Many sent to America, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

David Livingstone (1815-73, African explorer) born in Blantyre.

George IV (born 1772, son of George III) reigned 1820-1830.

Scotland's first commercial railway was opened between Edinburgh and Dalkeith.

William IV (born 1765, brother of George IV) reigned 1830-1837.

Victoria (born 1819, niece of William IV) reigned 1837-1901.

English Statutory records start/

First useable census.

Disruption of the Church of Scotland. 474 ministers signed the Deed of Demission and formed the Free Church  of Scotland (the "Wee Free").

Robert William (1822-1873) patented the vulcanised rubber pneumatic tyre. The invention was abandoned because of the costs. It was re-invented by a Scottish veterinary surgeon, John Boyd Dunlop (1840-1892) in 1888.

Robert William patented the fountain pen.

Novelist Robert Louis Stevenson born Edinurgh (1850-94).

Official ending of the Highland Clearance.

Start of Scottish statutory records (SRs - Birth, Marriage, Death).

The National Gallery of Scotland opens.

Scotland hosts the first Open Golf Championship.

The first Rugby International played between Scotland and England.

The Scottish Football Association and Rangers Football Club founded.

Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell explains the laws of electromagnetism.

Alexander Graham Bell (1847-1922) invents the telephone in USA.

Tay Bridge  collapses in storm taking train with it. Corners  had been cut during construction to reduce costs). The bridge was designed by William Arrol (1839-1913).

Robert Louis Stevenson publishes 'Treasure Island'.

William Smith forms the Boys' Brigade in Glasgow.

Celtic Football Club founded.

Forth Rail Bridge opens. Designed by William Arrol (who also designed the Tay Bridge, which collapsed)  it took six years to build.

Sir James Dewar invents the Thermos flask.

The Underground Railway (the "shooglie") in Glasgow was opened. It remains the only underground 
in Scotland. 

Birth of Elizabeth Lyon (Queen Elizabeth 'The Queen Mother'). Although she was born in London, she was brought up at Glamis Castle, Angus.

Britain's worst train disaster near Gretna Green, south of Dumfries, killing 227 people.

Elizabeth Lyon (Queen Elizabeth 'The Queen Mother') marries the Duke of York.

John Logie Baird (1888-1946) invents the television.

Sir Alexander Fleming (1881-1955) discovers penicillin.


Andrew Durie published Durie's Perpetual Calendar in New York.

St. Kilda evacuated. Authorities decided that life was intolerable on the island.

Cunard White Star liner "Queen Mary" was launched at Clydebank.

Sir Robert Watson-Watt invents radar.

Edward VIII abdicates to marry Mrs. Simpson. The Duke of York (his brother) becomes King George VI.

The largest ocean liner, the Queen Elizabeth, launched at Clydebank.

Hitler's Deputy Rudolf Hess parachutes from a plane just south of Glasgow. His purpose remains one of the great enigmas of the war.

More than 1000 people killed over two days in Clydebank and Glasgow during the only sustained German Luftwaffe attack on Scotland during the Second World War.

Scottish Nationalists steal the "Stone of Destiny" from Westminster Abbey. This was Scotland's Coronation Stone, taken by the English in 1296. By tradition all British Monarchs have to be crowned while sitting on it. It was eventually recovered from Arbroath Abbey, although some claim this was a copy, and the original remained in Scotland.

Scotland's first nuclear power station opened at Chapelcross in Dumfriesshire.

Forth Road Bridge opened by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. It was the longest suspension bridge in Europe at the time.

Tay Road Bridge opened - for a short time the longest bridge in the world, at just over one-mile.

Queen Elizabeth II (QE2) was launched in Clydebank. It was the last of the great Clyde-built passenger liners.

Sixty-six people killed in Scotland's worst football disaster, when part of the stadium collapsed at Ranger's ground in Glasgow after a match with Celtic.

The first oil piped ashore from the North Sea at Peterhead


The Duries were chiefless for some time until the recognition in 1988 of Lt Col. Raymond Varley Dewar-Durie of Durie. He established his descent through his grndmother, Elizabeth Durie of Craigluscar, from Abbot George. His family name was changed from Dewar to Dewar-Durie.

Scotland's worst terrorist incident occurs when a bomb explodes on board a Boeing 747 airliner on course from Frankfurt to New York. It crashes on the village of Lockerbie in Dumfrieshire, killing a total of 275 people, - all those on board and a number on the ground.

Piper Alpha oil oil production platform in the North Sea explodes, killing 187 men.

Scotland defeats England to win the Rugby "Grand Slam"

A gunman kills 16 five-year-old children, their teacher and himself in a Dunblane Primary School in Perthshire. This is the worst tragedy of its type in the U.K.

The "Stone of Destiny", Scotland's Coronation Stone, is returned from London to Edinburgh Castle (rather than it's native Scone) on 30 November 1996 - 700 years after being stolen by Edward I. The drab ceremony, the fact that it was more of a loan than an actual return and the ongoing pressure for greater Scottish autonomy led many to see this as an empty gesture.

Scotland votes for devolution and having it's own Parliament, with tax raising powers.

The Scottish Parliament reconvened on 12 May 1999, 292 years after its "adjournment" in 1707.

Andrew Durie of Durie becomes Chief and Representer of the Durie family

The Durie Family Association is established




Share your story

If you have a story or a history for us, please send as a Word Document or Plain Text by email, accessible from our Contact page. Photographs should be in Jpeg format (.jpg).

All information will be reviewed and may be used on the website and shared with the family genealogist.

We hope you will also help us build up our extended Family Tree - http://www.brucedurie.co.uk/TNG/

There is an historical information section on Overseas Duries included in '750 Years of Duries' by Dr Bruce Durie. Click Here


Back Home Up Next

Copyright ©2019 Bruce Durie & Durie Family Association. Maintained by Bruce Durie