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1568 - 1568
kirk attempts to mend a marriage in Aberdeen

After 1560, the local kirk session often became involved in marital disputes. It was not uncommon for it to attempt to reconcile husbands and wives, as seen here in this example from Aberdeen, where the kirk tries to help an abandoned wife. Her husband was less than willing to accept the kirk's demands. The kirk threatened the man and his partner with the parliamentary act recently made against adulterers. The Scots follows the translation


The last day of Marche, 1568.


The said Day, William Cryste, cordiner [shoemaker], being complained upon by Janet Kyd, his lawful married wife, for putting her away from him, and taking in her place a whore, called Margaret Myrton, and holding house with her, being called both before the Assembly, and accused of the same, could not deny it; and the said William plainly spoke and affirmed that he would never receive his wife again for any man that would speak with a tongue, wherefore the Assembly decreed and ordained them both to be punished conform to the act made against open adulterers.


The said day, Villiam Cryste, cordinar, being complenit vpon be Janet Kyd, his lawfull mareit wife, for putting hir away from him, and taking in her place ane hwyr, callit Margret Myrton, and halding house with her, being callit bayth befoir the Assemblie, and accusit for the sam, culd nocht deny; and the said Villiam planlie spak and affermit he wald never ressaue his vif agane for ony man that wald speik with ane tong, quhairfor the Assemblie decretuit and ordanit tham bayth to be puniest conforme to the act maid aganis oppin adulteraris.



Selections from the Records of the Kirk Session, Presbytery, and Synod of Aberdeen ed John Stuart (Aberdeen: Spalding Club, 1846), p.13. Translation by E. Ewan