The Honours of Scotland

The Honours of Scotland




The Honours of Scotland consist of the Crown, the Scepter, and the Sword of State. They are the oldest Royal Regalia in Britain and are housed in Edinburgh Castle.

The Crown of Scotland was made in 1540 for James V, King of Scots (1515-1542) and was made from an existing crown built in 1503. It was made from gold melted down from the previous one as well as using Scottish gold from the Crawford Moor mine. It is believed that it was made by French craftsmen.

The Sword of Sate was a gift to James IV, King of Scots (1473-1513) from Pope Julius II (1443-1513). The blade is one metre long. It was made by an Italian craftsman, Domenico da Suttri.

The Scepter was also a gift to James IV, King of Scots by Pope Alexander VI (the infamous Roderic de Borja) (1431-1503).

The three Honours of Scotland were first used together at the coronation of the infant Mary Queen of Scots (daughter of King James V) in Stirling castle in 1543. They were last used at the coronation of King Charles II at Scone on 1 January 1651.

For safety in times of unrest, the jewels were hidden first in Dunottar castle, then Kinneff church. Under the terms of the Treaty of Union in 1707, Scotland’s crown jewels were then stored in Edinburgh castle until 1818.