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Clan Lundin / Lundie
Chapter Six – Lundie of Benholm


The castle of Benholm is located in North Angus and is situated on the coast. The castle was associated with the Lundie family from its conception, but little is known about the family that lived there. In the reign of King William the Lion (1164-1214) the lands and Barony of Benholm were granted to the family of de Benne or de Benhame.

On the 5th January 1390, Allan Lundie obtained a Crown Charter to part of Benholm.

Robert Lundie of Benholm, a son of Sir John Lundie of that ilk, married, around 1475, Isobel Erskine, daughter of John Erskine 3rd of Dunn by Marjory Graham, daughter of Robert Graham of Ewisdale and Morphy. A charter dated towards the end of the 15th century shows a John Lunday the lands and Barony of Benhame to his son Robert. The most likely children of this marriage are:-

1 Robert Lundie of Benholm

2 Marion, married firstly Alexander Keith of Pittendrum, forth son of William Keith, 3rd Earl Marischal by Elizabeth Gordon daughter of George 2nd Earl of Huntly. They had one son:-

i John Keith of Pittendrum.

Alexander Keith died before 1515 as she married secondly Robert Arbuthnott of Banff, second son of Robert Arbuthnott by Marjorie Scrymgeour, on 22nd September 1515.

Robert Lundie of Benholm, his wife is unknown, but he had the following issue:-

1 William Lundie of Benholm. (assumed to be Robert’s son) On 25th June 1551, William Lundie of Benholm and his wife Helen Carnegie, daughter of Sir Robert Carnegie, 5th of Kinnaird, by Margaret Guthrie, received as spouses a Crown charter of the lands of Tullo and Inchmeddan in Kincardineshire on William’s resignation. William died shortly after this marriage.

2 Andrew Lundie of Benholm (again it is assumed that Robert is his father) was married to Margaret Scrymgeour.

2 Elizabeth Lundie, the only definite child of Robert, married Robert Keith, Lord Altrie, Abbott of Deer, second son of William Keith, fourth Earl Marischal, on 24th May 1556. She was the heiress of her father, Robert Lundie of Benholm. Lord Altrie died before 19th May 1596. He and Elizabeth had no male issue, so his titles and estates passed to his nephew, George Keith 5th Earl Marischal. This included the estate and castle of Benholm. They had issue:-

i Elizabeth, married Alexander Hay of Dalgaty, on 4th December 1584.

ii Margaret, married first, before 28th August 1588, John Erskine, son and heir apparent of John Erskine of Logy and later Dun. By this marriage she had John Erskine who suceeded to Dun on 5th November 1603. Secondly she married Sir John Lindsay of Ballincho, third son of David Lindsay 9th Earl of Crawford, on 26th May 1599.

It is through the association between the final two generations of this family and the family of the Earls of Marichal (Keith), that again we get an impression of their prominence in society. The association between Benholm and the Family of the Earl Marichal is so great that at the castle of Dunnottar, the seat of the Earls of Marichal, there is a building named Benholm’s lodging. This is so named after a relative of theirs from Benholm, who visited regularly.

It is interesting to note, that on 19th January 1630, a William Lundie is registered as heir male to Robert (alias William) Lundie of Benholm, partrui.

Although the barony and lands of Benholm passed to the family of Keith, there remain in the area a number of Lundies.

Benholm Castle

The Account of the RCAHMS of this building is as follows:-

Benholm Castle: This oblong tower-house comprises four storeys and a garret and was probably built about 1500. The caphouse was added about 1600, and in the early 19th century a mansion was built on the S; both tower and mansion are derelict.

RCAHMS 1982; A Jervise 1882; D MacGibbon and T Ross 1887

The Tower of Benholm, as described, and the 19th century Benholm Castle, with which it has been incorporated, are both ruinous. The dovecot at NO 8044 7067 and the disused private chapel at NO 8045 7063 are contemporary with the later building.

Visited by OS (NKB) 20 December 1967


Scottish Castle Survey 1988; N Bogdan and I B D Bryce 1991.

This building is situated on a spur above the Bervie Water at an altitude of 80m OD. There were proposals for restoration in March 1992.

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