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Clan Wardlaw


The various printed accounts of this family claim for it a very high antiquity, stating that it came from Saxony early in the sixth century. Cardinal Walter Wardlaw, when Rector of the University of Paris, is said to have written a history of the Wardlaw Family. Playfair in his Baronetage states this as an undoubted fact, and mentions that a copy was in the Royal Library of France until the Revolution. A Mr. Craig of the Riccarton family stated about 1789 that the King of France, The University of Paris, and the head of the Wardlaw family all had copies. The one in the Royal Library of France was said to have been destroyed at the Revolution.

On coming from Saxony to the time we know of in 1066, when Malcolm Canmore conferred on them large estates in Scotland, they were in England. Our few clues indicate Tynedale in Northumberland.

The Wardlaw lands were in Galloway until they lost them by siding with Baliol. When King Robert the Bruce came into power the Wardlaws went to his side and he bestowed on them half of the Barony of Wilton, and they were of Wilton for over 120 years. The first Laird of Wilton, Henry Wardlaw of Wilton, married Mary Stewart, the niece of Sir Walter the High Stewart of Scotland. He had at least 4 sons and 3 daughters: Henry Wardlaw 2nd Laird of Wilton; Cardinal Walter Wardlaw; William Wardlaw; Gilbert Wardlaw Lord of Riccarton, was given lands of Spitalton and Sainct Giles Grange from Cardinal Walter Wardlaw that had been granted to him from King David. Gilbert's branch continued down the lands of Riccarton and Warriston, Kilbaberton and the Grange.

Cardinal Walter Wardlaw's nephew, Bishop Henry Wardlaw, founded St. Andrews University and his effigy remains there, associated with the St. Andrews Cathedral ruins. One of the streets close to the university is Wardlaw Gardens,

The 2nd Laird of Wilton, Henry Wardlaw of Wilton, had a son William, who was the 3rd Laird of Wilton and his son Andrew the 4th Laird of Wilton married Christian de Valoniis, the heiress of Torrie and Inchgall and the Wardlaws were of Torrie down for many generations.

Our lines going back from Henry I. Wardlaw are extensive and go back on several royal king lines. The Wardlaws were in favor with and worked closely with many of the kings and so were granted lands and titles throughout the years. At one time it was said that the Wardlaws possessed all the land 'between the Ochils and the Forth'. Their castles and mansion houses are well documented in many books and most are still standing, although some are in ruins. The line of Wardlaw Baronets stretches down to the present day. The Wardlaw pure coat-of-arms was first owned by Wardlaws of Wilton, then was quartered with Valoniis of Torrie.

Wardlaws of today are spread all over the globe. They went to Australia, New Zealand, England, Canada and America.


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