George Hay, Min. of Rathven

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George Hay, Min. of Rathven

Birthdate: (58)
Death: 1588 (53-61)
Immediate Family:

Son of William Hay of Talla and Tweedsmuir and Janet Spottiswood
Husband of Marion Henderson
Father of James Hay of Rannes
Brother of Andrew Hay, Min. of Renfrew

Managed by: Alisdair James Smyth
Last Updated:

About George Hay, Min. of Rathven

Biographical Summary

George Hay, born about 1530, was a younger son of William H., fifth of Talla, Tweedsmuir, and Janet Spottiswood of that family. He appears first as rector of Rathven on 10th July 1558, and held the benefice in conjunction with Eddleston by a dispensation from the Pope. He conformed at the Reformaation and retained both charges. On 19th Jan. 1560 he granted the kirk lands of Rathven and Eddleston to his brother William Hay of Barro. On 24th Oct. 1561, at a meeting held in the study of James M'Gill at Edinburgh, he supported the proposal to deprive Queen Mary of the Mass. As min. of Eddleston, he attended the General Assembly, 29th June 1562, when he was app. to preach throughout Carrick along with the Superintendent, John Willock, and another. Knox preached in Kyle, the result of their co-operating labours being a large accession to the Protestant cause and the subscribing of a covenant at Ayr on 4th Sept. Knox mentions that soon afterwards, when the Abbot of Crossraguel presented himself in Maybole to dispute about the Mass, "the voyce of Maister George Hay so effrayed him, that efter ones he wearyed of that exercise." On 8th May 1563 he sold the prebendal manse of Eddleston, on the north side of Rotten Row, at Glasgow, to his brother Andrew, rector of Renfrew. At a later date he signed various charters as Canon of Glasgow. In a minute of the General Assembly, 30th Dec. 1563, he is called " minister to the Privy Council," and in 1564 he is spoken of as "minister to the Court." In 1565 he had a commission from the Assembly to visit kirks, schools, and colleges, to eradicate idolatry, etc., from Dee to Spey. In subsequent Assemblies he took a prominent part and acted on the chief committees and commissions. In 1567 he had a third of the stipend of both his charges on condition that he adequately supplied that at which he did not usually reside, and in 1568 he was sharply rebuked for failing to implement this with respect to Eddleston. On 5th March 1570 he was elected Moderator of Assembly, and desired to be relieved of his duties as commissioner in the north, but that was not done. In 1574 Forsken, Dundurcus, and Bellie were in this charge. In 1575 he was app. commissioner of Caithness. In 1577 he was app. one of the deputies to the General Council at Magdeburg for constituting the Augsburg Confession. Next year, on 25th July, Parliament app. him a Visitor for the College of Aberdeen. In 1585 he appears as commissioner for Banff; died in 1588. He marr. Marion Henderson of the Fordel family, who died Oct. 1577, and had issue —

  • George of Rannes, died v.p. ;
  • James of Rannes, ancestor of that family, died about 1630 ;
  • William, tailor burgess, Edinburgh ;
  • Janet.

SOURCE: Fasti ecclesiae scoticanae: the succession of ministers in the Church of Scotland from the reformation, Vol. VI, page 294

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