From the Book of Eminent Burgesses of Dundee 1513 to 1885.

Alexander Hume of North Berwick - 15th April 1589.



SIR ALEXANDER HUME of North Berwick was the second son of PATRICK HUME of Polwarth, and played a distinguished part in the political history of the reign Of JAMES VI. He obtained the dominical lands of North Berwick in 1562, by purchase, from his younger sister, MARGARET, who was the last Prioress of the famous Convent of North Berwick. In October, 1580, he was appointed one of the twenty four Gentlemen of the Chamber selected by the KING as, "having moyen to leif on thair awin, and being knowin to have bene affectionat to his Hienes sen his birth;" and in the following month he was despatched on a mission to the Court of QUEEN ELIZABETH to concert with her some means of suppressing the tumults on the Borders.

This duty was accomplished satisfactorily, and the Privy Council declared after his return that he had "rewlie, honestlie, and diligentlie performit and dischargeit his charge and devoir in the maters committit to his credite." He took part with PROVOST HALIBURTON of Dundee in the "Raid of Ruthven," to which allusion has been so often made in this volume; and it is very evident that it was his association with the leaders of that exploit which caused his name to be enrolled amongst the Burgesses of Dundee in 1589. SIR ALEXANDER sat as a Minor Baron in the Convention of 1590, and as representative of Edinburgh in 1593 4. He was Lord Provost of Edinburgh from 1593 to 1596, and was a faithful attender of the meetings of the Privy Council whilst he was a member of that powerful body. It is usually stated that he died "before June, 1608," but as he is referred to as "the late ALEXANDER HUME of North Berwick" in a Charge to the Sheriff of Roxburgh in December, 1599 58), the date of his death must have been at least nine years earlier. His position on the Burgess Roll of Dundee is another proof that that Burgh was regarded as the principal seat of the party known in history as the "Ruthven Raiders," even after the death of PROVOST HALIBURTON.


Iain D. McIntosh, Friends of Dundee City Archives