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Register of the Privy Council of Scotland (1545-1691)

The Register of the Privy Council has been published for the period 1545-1691 in three series (1877-1970).The Library holds Volumes 1-12 of the first series and Volumes 15-16 of the third series, covering 1545-1622 and 1690-1691.

The Privy Council of Scotland was a body that advised the king and had a wide range of functions beyond the supervision and administration of the law. It was concerned with relations between Scotland and England and other powers, it decided on the treatment of beggars, gypsies, witches, Jacobites and Covenanters, it issued licences to travel, oversaw the regulation of trade and shipping, introduced emergency measures against the plague, and administered oaths of allegiance. Its registers therefore include a wide range of material on the political, administrative, economic and social affairs of Scotland. The documents in the collection are largely in English. (13 volumes, published 1877-1898/1967).