Rev. James Guthrie

1612 - 1661

James Guthrie
©2022 Gazetteer for Scotland

James Guthrie

Clergyman who led the resistance to the introduction of the Episcopalian system of church governance. The son of the Laird of Guthrie (Angus), Guthrie was educated at St Andrews University and went on to serve as Professor of Philosophy at New College in that institution. Influenced by Samuel Rutherford (1600-61), Guthrie signed the National Covenant and took a leading role in the protests against the introduction of Bishops into the Church of Scotland by King Charles I. He took charge of a parish at Lauder (1638) and then Stirling (1649).

Guthrie was arrested in 1660, following the Restoration of King Charles II, and jailed in Edinburgh Castle. He was convicted of treason, hanged, and his head placed on the Netherbow Port, becoming one of the first to be executed for supporting the Covenant.

He is remembered by a statue in the Valley Cemetery, Stirling.

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