With their defiant motto of ‘Boldly and rightly’ and crest of a hand clutching a cutlass, the Elliots were for centuries one of the most notorious clans of the near-anarchic Scottish Borders.
As reivers, or raiders, they pillaged not only their neighbours’ lands and goods, but also raided south of the Border into England.
Thought to have had earlier roots that lay in Angus, in the far north, it is not known with any degree of certainty why they eventually settled in the Borders, but Liddesdale became their main territory.
With the Borders the first line in defence against English attack on Scotland, they often bore the first devastating brunt of invasion, while Robert Ellot, or Elliot, 13th Earl of Redheugh, was among the many Scots slain along with James 1V at the battle of Flodden in 1513.
Recounted here are the truly stirring lives and times of the Elliots.