Tweedsmuir Collection


Tweedsmuir Collection


A small collection of 25 books from the library of John Buchan (1875-1940), Scottish novelist, politician and first baron Tweedsmuir. Buchan was a keen supporter of the National Library, being a member of the Library's Board of Trustees from its foundation in 1925 until his appointment as Governor-General of Canada in 1935. All the items in the collection, which includes thirteen 17th-century items, contain Buchan's bookplate. The books relate to James Graham (1612-1650), the first marquess of Montrose, and to the history of Scotland after the declaration of the National Covenant in 1638 and during the Civil War in the 1640s. Montrose initially sided with the Covenanters in Scotland during the War but switched sides to support King Charles I. In the early 1640s he won series of daring victories in Scotland for the Royalist cause before going into exile in Norway in 1646. He returned to Scotland in 1649 to avenge the executed Charles I and to support the cause of Charles II, but was unable to make any progress before being captured and executed in Edinburgh in 1650. Montrose had a particular fascination for Buchan. He featured in several of Buchan's books and lectures and was the subject of one of his earliest historical works, 'The Marquis of Montrose' (London & Edinburgh, 1913), which received unfavourable criticism due to the author's idealised portrayal of its subject (a revised biography, 'Montrose', was published in 1928).


The books have been catalogued individually and have the shelfmark 'Tw.'.


The collection was bequeathed to the Library in 1940.

Related collections

Two collections of manuscript material relating to John Buchan were acquired from his son, the second baron Tweedsmuir, in 1977 and 1985. The manuscripts are held at Acc.6975 and Acc.11627.




Montrose, 1st Marquis of

Scottish history and literature