John Alexander Henderson.

History of the Society of Advocates in Aberdeen online

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rents, minister's stipends and other public burdens whatsoever having been
deducted), And also of lending money at interest on heritable or personal
securities, of holding goods and chattels, and of receiving and holding donations
and legacies for the purposes aforesaid, and in like manner of selling, pledging,
and wadsetting any of the lands, tenements, or heritable subjects already purchased
or to be acquired for the use of the said Society, or which at any future time shall
be purchased and acquired by the said Corporation, and of giving and granting
leases and tacks of the said lands, tenements and other heritable subjects and



6 SOCIETY OF ADVOCATES IN ABERDEEN.

cedendi et cadem in feudum dandi per modum perpetuse loca-
tionis pro competenti feudi divoria : Et similiter sub nomine
et Titulo antedicto Jus fasque sit Actiones movere et sustinere,
litcs intentare et propellere in quibuscunque Curiis et locis et coram
quibuscunque Judicibus, Ircnarchis vel aliis Officiariis in omnibus
Actionibus, processibus, Causis, Accusationibus, Rationibus Rebus et
postulationibus quibuscunque tali modo et forma quali ulli alii nostrorum
subditorum Jus fasque sit vel cuilibet Corpori Corporato vel politico, ac
etiam dicta; Corporationi commune sigillum erit ad omnia sua Negotia
et Causas eorum eorumque successorum : Et licitum sit illis eorumque
successoribus frangere, mutare, vel renovarc idem sigillum a tempore in
tempus prout illis vel majori parti eorum expcdiens videbitur : Quod
Sigillum custodietur a Thesaurario suo qui cum eodem aderit, vel ut id
adsit efificiet omnibus Convocationibus in quibus necessarium erit : Et
Nos pro nobis nostrisque haeredibus et successoribus Dirigimus, Ordin-
amus, et Statuimus ut quotannis teneantur duo generales Convocationes
dicta: Corporationis una in ultimum diem Martis Mensis Junii, et altera
in ultimum diem Martis Mensis Novembris, apud talem locum vel loca,
horam vel horas, ut dictus Praesidens et Societas a tempore in tempus



giving the same in feu by way of perpetual lease for a competent feu-duty : And
likewise under the name and title foresaid it shall be lawful to raise and carry on
actions, and sue and be sued, in whatever courts and places and before whatever
judges, justiciaries and other officers in all actions, disputes, causes, complaints,
matters, suits, and demands whatsoever in such mode and form as shall be lawful
to any other of our subjects or to any other body politic or corporate, And also
that there shall be a Common Seal to the said Corporation for all the business
and affairs of them and their successors, and it shall be lawful to them and their
successors from time to time to break, change, or renew the said Seal as to them
or the major part of them shall seem expedient, which Seal shall be kept by
their Treasurer, who shall attend with the same at all their meetings wherein it
shall be necessary, or shall cause it to be present ; and We for Us and Our
heirs and successors direct, ordain and appoint, that every year two general
meetings of the said Corporation shall be held, one on the last Tuesday of the
month of June, and the other on the last Tuesday of the month of November, at
such place or places and hour or hours as the President and Society from time



FIRST CROWN CHARTER, 1 774. 7

diriment, cum potcstatc Comperendinationis prout dictae general j Con-
vocation! expediens videbitur ; et prima generalis Convocatio dictae
Societatis tenta crit vigcsimo octavo die mensis Junii in hoc praesenti
anno millesimo septingentesimo septuagesimo quarto in loco solito, ubi
dicti socii dictae Societatis generaliter Congressus suos tenuerint et inter
horas undccimam et meridiem illius diei : Et Nos ulterius Concedimus,
et dcclaramus quod dictus Thomas Mosman erit primus Presidens et
dicti Joannes Clerk, David Bartlett, Alexander Innes Senior, Alexander
Innes Junior, Doctor Gulielmus Thorn, Gulielmus Nicol, Joannes
Gordon, Gulielmus Burnett, Alexander Lumsden, Jacobus Ramsay, Alex-
ander Duthie, David Morice, Jacobus Watson, Carolus Tait, Joannes
Durno, Alexander Carnegie et Arthurus Dingwall Fordyce primi socii
dictae Corporationis erunt : et Presidens et Membra plenam potestatem
et auctoritatem apud dictam generalem Convocationem in mense
Novembris habeant, Eligendi pro anno venturo Praesidentem Thesaurar-
ium aliosque Officiarios necessarios ac etiam Curatores selectos quinque
virorum de numero suo constituendi tanquam in Concilium adhibendum
quocum eorum Thesaurarius deliberabit et consulet in ordinaria guber-
natione fundorum dictae Corporationis, et cum potestate Comperendina-
tionis prout illis expediens videbitur : Et Nos potestatem Damus et
auctoritatem Praesidenti dictae Corporationis pro tempore existenti ad



to time shall appoint, with the power of adjournment as to the said general
meeting shall seem expedient ; and that the first general meeting of the said
Society shall be held on the 28th day of June 1774, between the hours of 11
and 12 of the same day, in the usual place in which the members of the said
Society are generally accustomed to hold their meetings : And We also Grant
and Declare that the said Thomas Mosman [and others] should be the first
members of the said Corporation, and that the President and Members in the
said general meeting in the month of November shall have full power and
authority to elect a President, Treasurer and other necessary Officers for the
ensuing year, and also to appoint a Committee of five of their number who shall
be a permanent Council, with whom the Treasurer shall consult and deliberate
in the usual administration of the funds of the said Corporation with power of
adjournment as to them shall seem expedient : And We Grant power and
authority to the President of the said Corporation for the time being at his



8 SOCIETY OF ADVOCATES IN ABERDEEN.

suum beneplacitum vel quoties corum Res id postulabunt super pre-
monitionem viginti quatuor horarum aliis Membris Convocationem
Dictae Societatis citandi : et quod dictus Praesidens Jus habeat praesidendi
apud omnes Convocationes dictae Corporationis et habendi inibf tarn
deliberativum quam supernumerarium Sufifragium in unaquaque questionc
ubi aequalia Suffragia crunt inter Socios praescntes providendo verun-
tamen Quod Praesidens nullum negativum habebit super vocationem
Congressus dictae Societatis, et autem absente aut recusante ita facerc,
Quod legitimum crit ullis quinque vel pluribus Sociorum dictae Corpora-
tionis consentientibus in hanc finem vocare congressus pro re nata simili
prcmonitionc viginti quatuor horarum aliis sociis data. Et Quod talis
Congressus potcstatem habebit Eligendi Praesidentem pro re nata et
procedendi et determinandi in ullum negotium et Res dictae Corpora-
tionis quae coram illis venerint, codem modo ac si annuus Praesidens
interesset et praesideret apud talem Congressum : Et Nos Ordinamus
Dirigimus, et Statuimus, quod non erit in potestate Praesidentis et
sociorum Dictae Corporationis vel corum successorum expendendi ullam
plus vel majorem summam vel summas monetae in Eleemosynam intra
annum quam immunis annua productio et proventus praediorum et



pleasure, or as often as their affairs shall require it, to call meetings of the said
Society on twenty-four hours notice given to the other members : and that the
said President shall have the right of presiding at all meetings of the said
Corporation, and of having a deliberative as well as a casting vote on every
question when there shall be an equality of the votes of the members present,
provided nevertheless that the President shall not have a negative voice against
calling a meeting of the Society, but in his absence, or on his refusal so to call
a meeting, it shall be lawful to any five or more members of the said Corporation
consenting for that end to call a meeting pro re nata on twenty-four hours notice
given to the other members as aforesaid, and that such meeting shall have
power to elect a President pro re nata, and to proceed and resolve on all
business and affairs of the Corporation which shall be submitted to them in the
same way as if the annual President had attended and presided at such meeting :
And We Ordain, Direct, and Appoint that it shall not be in the power of the
President and Members of the said Corporation or their successors to expend
any more or greater sum or sums of money in charity within a year than the
free annual produce and revenue of the estates and securities belonging to the



FIRST CROWN CHARTER, 1 774. 9

Securitatum ad dictam Corporationem pertinentium et currentes Col-
lectiones, Subscriptiones, et Largitiones pro tali anno (post omnem
deductionem ex iisdem) praebuerint et produxerint una cum reliquiis
praecedentium annorum in quantum apparebit necessarium pro propositis
Eleemosynarum Societatis, et praedia et Capitales summae quae fundos
dictae Corporationis composuerunt in perpetuum posthac integra et
intacta in utilitatem ejusdem remanebunt : Et distributio dictae immunis
annuae productionis et provcntus limitabitur ad et facta erit solummodo
inter confectos et redactos socios dictae Societatis et eorum Viduas,
et Liberos, et Nepotes Sociorum Confectorum in pauperibus circum-
stantiis quae antcponentur omnibus aliis et in ordine praelationis supra
dcscripto : et deficientibus talibus pauperibus fratribus ct Sororibus
ullius demortui membri Societatis et corum liberis in eodem ordine : Et
quod tales distributiones solummodo factae erunt apud generales Statutas
Convocationes Societatis, et annualis Computus praediorum et fundorum
dictae Corporationis et pecuniae acceptae et expensae per Quaestorem factus
erit et coram generali Convocatione in mense Novembris productus fuerit
pro eorum examinatione ct approbatione : Et quod Libri ejus et com-
puti apud omnes alias Convocationes apcrti erunt pro inspectione Prae-



said Corporation and the current collections, subscriptions, and donations of that
year (all burdens being deducted therefrom) together with the overplus of
previous years, shall yield and produce however much may seem to be necessary
for the established charities of the Society, and that the property and principal
sums which form the sums of the said Corporation shall remain whole and
entire for ever after for the benefit thereof: and that the division of the said
free produce and revenue shall be limited and made allenarly among the poor
and indigent Members of the said Society, and their Widows, and among the
indigent Children and Grand-children of poor Members, before all others, and
in the order of preference above set forth: And, failing such poor persons, among
the indigent brothers and sisters of any deceased Member of the said Society
and their children, in the same order, and that such division shall only be made
at the stated general meetings of the said Society ; And that an annual account
of the property and funds of the said Corporation, and the money received and
expended by the Treasurer, shall be prepared and produced in presence of the
general meeting in the month of November, for examination and approval, and
that the books and accounts thereof shall be exhibited at every meeting for

C



IO SOCIETY OF ADVOCATES IN ABERDEEN.

sidentis aliorumque : Sociorum dictae Corporationis : Et ulterius Nos
Volumus et Declaramus Quod nemo Jus habebit aut instructus erit
Socius fieri dictae Societatis et Corporationis nisi ille prius rite admissus
fuerit procurator in Curiis Vicecomitis et Commissarii Aberdoniae secun-
dum usualem formam et consuetudinem in talibus casibus et qui receptus
sit pro Societatque et contribuerit atquc solverit ad fundos dictae Societatis
usualia feoda admissionis, vel talia feoda admissionis sicut posthac
Stabilientur, et constituentur acceptum iri per ullam ordinationem vel
legem privatam dictae corporationis ad id propositum quae facta fuerit
(sic ut idem non excesserit summam triginta librarum Sterlinensium
pro admissione ullius unius Socii) Et quando ullum membrum admittetur
in dictam Corporationem, nomen ejus inscribetur in Registrario libro qui
in hunc finem custodietur, et remanebit et continuabit socius quamdiu
continuabit taxari et solvere annuales divorias dictae Societatis, vel tales
annuas divorias ut posthac stabilientur et ordinabuntur receptum iri a
membris dictae Corporationis per ullam ordinationem vel legem privatam
quae facta fuerit ad id propositum, sic ut eadem non excesserit Summam
viginti solidorum sterlinensium pro ullo uno Membro : Et Nos pro
Nobis nostrisque heredibus et Successoribus Damus et Concedimus dictis



the inspection of the President and other members of the said Corporation :
And We further Will and Declare that no one shall have right or be entitled
to become a member of the said Society and Corporation, unless he shall first
have been duly admitted a Procurator in the Sheriff and Commissary Courts
of Aberdeen according to the usual form and practice in such cases, and have
been received by the Society, and have contributed to the funds of the said
Society the usual fees of admission, or shall have paid whatever else shall have
been fixed and appointed to be received by any ordinance or byelaw of the said
Society to be made for that purpose (the said fees never exceeding the sum of
^30 Sterling for the admission of any member), and, when any Member shall
be admitted into the said Corporation, his name shall be inserted in a Register
to be kept for that purpose, and he shall remain and continue a Member so
long as he shall continue to be taxed and pay the yearly contributions of the
said Society, or such yearly contributions as shall be afterwards appointed and
ordained to be received from the members of the said Corporation by any
Ordinance or Bye-law to be made at their discretion (the same never exceeding
the sum of 20/- sterling for any Member) : And We for Us and Our Heirs and



FIRST CROWN CHARTER, 1 774. II

Praesidenti et Membris dictae Corporationis eorumque Successoribus
plenam potestatem et auctoritatem in generalibus Convocationibus con-
gregatis a tempore in tempus constituendi, ordinandi et faciendi tales et
tot leges privatas, Constitutiones, Regulas et ordinationes prout illis vel
majori parti eorum tunc et ibidem praesentibus proprium et necessarium
videbitur, pro meliore gubernatione et directione dictae Corporationis.
Et dictas leges privatas, Constitutiones, Ordinationes, et Regulas vel ullas
earum Mutandi et Abrogandi prout dicto Praesidenti et Membris sic con-
gregatis vel majori parti eorum tunc praesentibus necessarium videbitur :
Omnes et singulas quas Leges privatas, Constitutiones, Regulas et
Ordinationes sic ut praedicitur faciendas Nos Volumus rite Observari et
custodiri proviso quod ejusmodi Leges non erunt contrariae vel repug-
nantes legibus hujus Regni vel tenori praesentis Cartas nostras : Et ut
tales Leges privatae Constitutiones, Regulae et Ordinationes a tempore in
tempus imponendae vel ulla abrogatio vel alteratio earundem vel ullarum
earum concordatae stabilitae et confirmatae fuerint per generalem Con-
vocationem dicti Praesidentis et Membrorum tenendam et custodiendam
proxime postquam eadem respective facta fuerint : Et ulterius Nos ex
speciali gratia nostra certa scientia et proprio motu Concessimus, et



Successors Give and Grant to the said President and Members of the said
Corporation and their successors assembled in general meeting from time to
time full power and authority to constitute, ordain, and make such and so many
Bye-Laws, Constitutions, Rules, and Ordinances as shall appear proper and
necessary to them or the major part of them then and there present for the
better administration and direction of the said Corporation, and to alter and
rescind the said Bye-Laws, Constitutions, Ordinances, and Rules or any of them,
as to the said President and Members so assembled or the major part of them
then present shall appear necessary : And We will that all and sundry such
Bye-Laws, Statutes, Rules, and Ordinances to be made in manner foresaid be
duly observed and kept, provided that such laws are not contrary or repugnant
in any manner to the laws of this Kingdom and the tenor of the said Charter, —
And that the said Bye-Laws, Statutes, Rules, and Ordinances to be imposed from
time to time or any repeal or alteration of them, or any of them, shall be agreed
to, constituted, and confirmed by a general meeting of the said President and
Members to be called and held soon after the meeting at which the same are
made. And moreover We out of Our special grace, certain knowledge, and mere



12 SOCIETY OF ADVOCATES IN ABERDEEN.

Confirmavimus et per praesentia pro nobis nostrisque haeredibus et Succes-
soribus Damus et Confirmamus dicto Praesidenti aliisque Membris dictae
Societatis praedictis Omnia Praedia Summas monetae Jura, Commoda,
Beneficia, Securitates emolumenta, potestates, privilegia aliaque Negotia
et res quascunque per dictam Societatem vel ullum Membrum ejusdem
pro usu et beneficio ejusdem adhuc habuerunt, receperunt, fruiti sunt,
exercuerunt, Jus habuerunt, fecerunt, vel egerunt Tenendas, habendas,
recipiendas, percipiendas, excquendas et potiundas, omnia et singula
dicta praemissa ultimo supra mentionata per illos eorumque Successores
et dictam Corporationem in perpetuum in tarn amplo et beneficiali
modo omnibus intentis et propositi's quam dicta Societas vel ullum
membrum ejusdem antea tenuerunt fruiti sunt et exercuerunt eadem :
Et Nos pro nobis nobismet ipsis nostrisque haeredibus et Successoribus
Declaramus hasce Literas nostras patentes in omnibus et per omnia in
Jure validas et efficaces futuras secundum verum intentum et intellectum
earundem sensuque maxime favorabili et benefico et pro summo dictae
Corporations commodo accipiendas, interpretandas, et Adjudicandas
mala recitatione defectu incertitudine vel imperfectione in hisce Literis
nostris patentibus quibuscunque non obstantibus : Postremo Nos pro
nobis haeredibus et successoribus nostris cum dicta Corporatione seu



motion have granted and confirmed, and by these presents for Us and Our heirs
and successors Give and Confirm, to the said President and other Members of
the said Society all the property, sums of money, rights, advantages, benefits,
securities, emoluments, powers, privileges, and other matters and affairs whatever
which the said Society or any Member of the same shall have held, received, en-
joyed, exercised, had right to, have done or performed, for the use and benefit thereof,
To be held, had, received, taken, followed, and possessed, all and sundry the
premises last mentioned, by them and their successors and the said Corporation
forever, and in the most full and ample manner to all intents and purposes in
which the said Society or any Member thereof has held, enjoyed, and exercised
the same: And We for Us, Our heirs and successors, Declare that the said Letters
patent shall in every respect be valid and sufficient in law according to the true
intent and meaning of the same, and in the most favourable and beneficial
sense, and shall be received, interpreted, and adjudged to the greatest advantage
of the said Corporation, any wrong recital, defect, ambiguity, or imperfection
in Our said Letters Patent notwithstanding: And lastly We for Us, Our heirs



FIRST CROWN CHARTER, 1774. 13

Corpore politico et Successoribus suis per praesentes pacti sumus et Con-
venimus eisque Concessimus Nos haercdes et Successores nostros de
tempore in tempus omnibusque temporibus futuris ad dictae Corpora-
tionis seu Corporis politic! eorumque Successorum humilem rogatum et
petitionem iisdem daturos et concessuros omnia ea ulteriora et alia
privilegia Auctoritates Res et Negotia ad hanc nostram Concessionem
secundum verum intentum et intellectum ejusdem efficaciorem redden-
dam quae Nos aut illi de Jure concedere possumus aut poterunt quaeque
a dictae Corporations seu Corporis politici pro tempore existenti Juris-
peritis rationabiliter proponentur et excogitabuntur quaeque a nostro
haeredum et Successorum nostrorum Advocato et Sollicitatore-Generali
in Scotia ex nostris vel eorum parte approbabuntur : In cujus rei testi-
monium praesentibus Sigillum nostrum per Unionis tractatum custo-
diendum et in Scotia vice et loco Magni Sigilli ejusdem utendo ordi-
natum appendi mandavimus Apud Aulam nostram de St James's
vigesimo septimo die mensis Januarii anno Domini millesimo septingen-
tesimo septuagesimo quarto Regnique nostri anno decimo quarto. Per
signaturam manu S. D. N. Regis supra scripti.

Written to the Seal and registered the twentieth day of April 1774.
(Signed) Alex. Watson Dept. Seal'd at Edinburgh the
twentieth day of April one thousand seven hundred and
seventy four years. (Signed) Ro. Meikle Subt. ^80 Scots.

and successors, hereby contract, agree, and covenant with the said Corporation
or Body Politic and their successors that We and Our heirs and successors from
time to time and in all time coming will give and grant to the said Corporation
or Body Politic and their successors on their humble request and petition all
such further and other privileges, rights, matters, and things for rendering this
Our grant more effectual according to the true intent and meaning thereof which
We or they can lawfully grant, or which may reasonably be proposed or devised by-
Counsel learned in the law of the said Corporation or Body Politic for the time
being, and which should be approved on the part of Us and our heirs and successors
by our or their Advocate and Solicitor General in Scotland : In Witness Whereof
We have ordered Our Seal appointed by the Treaty of Union to be kept and
used in Scotland in room and place of the Great Seal thereof to be appended
to these presents at our Court of St. James's the twenty-seventh day of January
in the year of Our Lord One thousand seven hundred and seventy four and
of Our reign the fourteenth year.



SECOND CROWN CHARTER, 1799.



GEORGIUS Dei gratia, Magnae Britannia;, Franciae et Hiberniae Rex,
Fidei Defensor, omnibus probis hominibus ad quos praesentes literae
nostrae perveniant, salutem. QUANDOQUIDEM nos considerantes
quosdam Procuratores in Aberdonia, anno millesimo septingcntesimo
et septuagesimo quarto, per eorum petitionem nobis humiliter reprae-
sentavisse, quod urbs Abredonensis, propter amplitudinem suam, nego-
tia, et incolarum numerum, esset praecipua in Scotia ad Septentriones
Fluvii Forthae ; quod in hac urbe, praeter curias suae jurisdictionis
tanquam burgo regali, curiae Vicecomitis et Commissarii tcntae fuerunt,
jurisdictiones quarum extendebant per spatiosam et cultam regionem,
in qua diversa burga regalia, et multa magna oppida nundinaria jace-
bant ; quod procuratores admissi per, et in illis curiis agentes, ab anti-
quissimo tempore egcrant in omnibus eorum negotiis, tanquam societas



GEORGE, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King,
Defender of the Faith, To all to whom these presents shall come,
Greeting :

WHEREAS We considering that in the year Seventeen hundred and seventy-
four certain persons, Procurators in Aberdeen, humbly represented to
Us by their petition that the City of Aberdeen, on account of its size, business,
and population, was the chief City in Scotland north of the river Forth, that
in that City, besides the Courts of its own jurisdiction as a Royal Burgh, the
Courts of the Sheriff and Commissary were held, the jurisdiction whereof
extended through a spacious and cultivated region, in which lay several royal
burghs and many great market towns, that the Procurators admitted by and
acting in those Courts carried on business from the earliest times as a Society



SECOND CROWN CHARTER, 1 799. 1 5

vocata et nota per nomen Praesidentis et Societatis Procuratorum
in Aberdonia ; ct praesertim per solennes annuas contributiones inter
seipsos promoverant et stabiliverant peramplas opes, in sustenta-
tionem dictae societatis sociorum deficientium, viduarum, liberorum,
aliorumque affinium sociorum in paupertate obeuntium : Quod etiamsi
dicti petitores, ultra hominum memoriam, sub nomine Societatis tan-
quam Procuratores in Aberdonia egerant ; tamen, per amissionem
omnium suorum scriptorum et actorum, quas perierant cum officina
Commissarii Aberdoniae combusta esset anno millesimo septingentesimo
decimo nono, nequiverunt certe primam constitutionem, vel naturam
societatis suae investigare, ita ut opes suas aliaque negotia secure
administrare potuerint : IGITUR dicti petitores ad amovenda haec
incommoda, et ad melius sustentandam dictam societatem, nobis
humiliter supplicaverunt, ipsis concedere nostram regiam cartam,