Friday 5 August 2016

No, you're not a Scottish laird...

There's a lot of nonsense on the go in some parts of Scotland these days, where you can buy a souvenir plot of land as a gift for yourself or someone else, usually in plots of one square foot, where once purchased it is claimed you can apparently then run and/or leap around the country calling yourself a laird or a lady.

The Edinburgh based Court of the Lord Lyon has provided a suitable clarification at which you may wish to read before you start changing your name by deed poll, adopt airs and graces, enquire about a coat of arms, or seek an entry in Burke's Peerage!


The term ‘laird’ has generally been applied to the owner of an estate, sometimes by the owner himself or, more commonly, by those living and working on the estate. It is a description rather than a title, and is not appropriate for the owner of a normal residential property, far less the owner of a small souvenir plot of land. It goes without saying that the term ‘laird’ is not synonymous with that of ‘lord’ or ‘lady’.

Ownership of a souvenir plot of land is not sufficient to bring a person otherwise ineligible within the jurisdiction of the Lord Lyon for the purpose of seeking a Grant of Arms.

NB: Other Scottish souvenirs, including shortbread and God's chosen whisky (Laphroaig) are also available...


For details on my genealogy guide books, including A Decade of Irish Centenaries: Researching Ireland 1912-1923Discover Scottish Church Records (2nd edition), Discover Irish Land Records and Down and Out in Scotland: Researching Ancestral Crisis, please visit

1 comment:

  1. You can also buy a whole acre of land on the Moon, it appears, if a square foot of Scotland doesn't appeal. Bring your own whisky, though.