John Porterfield (Archbishop of Glasgow)

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John Porterfield (bef 1545-1604) was a minister and vicar who rose to Archbishop of Glasgow from 1571 to 1572.


[edit] Family

John Porterfield the son of John Porterfield, First Laird of Duchal. John was married twice. His first wife was Margaret Smollett. His second wife Elizabeth Stewart survived him.[1] He appeared to die without issue.

[edit] Life

[edit] Early Ministry

The first record of John is an adm. minister of Dumbarton parish in 1564 where he stayed until December 1568.

He also became the minister of Kilmaronock and the minister and vicar of Ardrossan by grant James VI on April 29, 1568. He was paid a salary of 120 Scots. He was succeeded by Sir James Hunter sometime before 1574.[2] In a letter to the General Assembly in 1569 Regent Murray states:

"Mairover at our coming, at Aberdeen, there came ane named Porterfield, minister, provydit of before to the viccarage of Ardrossane, and required also of us that he micht have the viccarage of Steinsone, seeing both was ane matter meine aneuch to sustaine him, and because the kirks war neir, he micht discharge the cure of both"[3]

This letter raises a number of questions. As the first name of Porterfield is not disclosed, it is possible this letter refers to John's uncle, Allan Porterfield who had served as vicar of Ardossan before him. The letter seems to imply he is no longer the vicar at Ardrossan. Aberdeen was also a long way to travel to meet. Steinsone appears as parish name but no other occurrences of this being a parish name have been uncovered.

[edit] Archbishop of Glasgow

Porterfield emerged as successor to James Beaton II in 1571 as the church was transforming from Catholic to Protestant as a result of the Reformation. He was the first of the Tulchan archbishop in name only. He was also Chancellor of the University of Glasgow at the the same time.[4] James Boyd of Trochrague succeeded him as the Archbishop of Glasgow in 1572.

[edit] Later Life

In 1574 he was was minister at a number of parishes including Balfron, Drymen, Killearn, Inniscailloch, and Kilmaronock.[5] In the same year he referred to as the servitor of Alexander, Earl of Glencarins. He was transferred to the parish of Ayr in 1580 and was officially granted the position on April 25, 1581. He served in Ayr until his passing in early 1604.[1]

[edit] References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Scott, Hew, DD (1920) Fasti ecclesiæ scoticanæ: Volume 3 - Synod of Glasgow and Ayr III Oliver and Boyd pp. 5,329,333,338,340,349,350. Retrieved 2011-06-25  
  2. Irving, Joseph (1879) The Book of Dumbartonshire II. Parishes Edinburgh and London: W. and A. K. Johnston pp. 236. Retrieved 2011-06-25  
  3. Society for the Benefit of the Sons and Daughters of the Clergy, ed. (1845) The New Statistical Account of Scotland V. Ayr-Bute Edinburgh and London: William Blackwood and Sons pp. 206. Retrieved 2011-06-26  
  4. "Biography of John Porterfield" University of Glasgow. Retrieved 2011-6-26  
  5. Lang, David, ed. (1844) Miscellany of the Wodrow Society: Containing Tracts and Original Letters, Chiefly Relating to the Ecclesiastical Affairs of Scotland During the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries First Volume The Edinburgh Printing Company pp. 383. Retrieved 2011-06-25  
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