[MR] BBC: Rare Scottish Map up for Auction

Garth Groff and Sally Sanford mallardlodge1000 at gmail.com
Mon Feb 17 02:17:11 PST 2020

Noble Friends, Especially Fellow Scots:

Today the BBC reports that a rare 16th century map of Scotland will go up
for auction. The map is a navigation chart was based on the partial
voyage around Scotland undertaken by King James V in 1540. The original map
was drawn from measurements made by Alexander Lindsay, the pilot for the
King's voyage. The chart for sale is a copy drawn in 1583 by French
mapmaker Nicolay D'Arfeville, and is remarkably accurate, more accurate
than later maps drawn up into the 18th century:
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-51485970 .

My question is, will a museum in Scotland have deep enough pockets to buy
the map and keep it where it belongs, or will it disappear into a rich
foreigners collection to be lost forever? Will the Scottish, or British
government, block the export license if the map is bought by a foreign
bidder? It has happened recently with other important relics sold at
auction. We'll see.

The BBC story mentions that the original 1540 map, from which the 1583
chart was copied, was used by a French fleet sent to avenge the murder of
Cardinal David Beaton, the Bishop of St. Andrews, and this invites some
comment. Cardinal Beaton made many enemies during the struggle for Scotland
against Protestant reformers. On 1 March 1546, Beaton had the popular
reformist scholar and preacher George Wishart strangled (some sources say
hanged) and burned at the stake at St. Andrews Castle. In revenge for this,
and to strike at Caltholic power, a Protestant hit squad was assembled in
March. They gained entrance to the Cardinal's castle, and there seriously
daggered Beaton into the next world (Heaven or Hell, depending on which
side you favor). The assassins then hung his body from a window sill like a
flag and proceeded to occupy the castle. They were eventually bombed into
submission on 31 July 1547 by the French fleet which arrived in June to
assist the Scottish regent Arran with the siege. The Protestant chaplain,
John Knox, was arrested with the others, and spent 19 months as a French
galley slave: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Andrews_Castle .

Yours Aye,

Mungo Napier, Laird of Mallard Lodge  🦆

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