Not long ago, I saw an interesting ad. It claimed: Become a Scottish Lord or Lady Today. Intrigued by all things fantastical, archaic and Scottish, I clicked to learn more. Shortly afterwards, I became a Lady.
But let’s put a little history to this first.
Back when Europeans were exploring The New World by boat and by foot, Scotsman Sir William Alexander devised a scheme that would profit the king in two manners. He “proposed that it might encourage development of a New Scotland if His Majesty were to offer a new order of baronets. The King liked the idea. After all, his creation of the Baronets of England in 1611 and the Baronets of Ireland in 1619 had raised £225,000 for the Crown.”
In other words, they’d sell land in New Scotland to men who wanted to gain status in Scottish society.
While some Baronets came to Canada and developed land, many didn’t. Yet, they were sworn in on Nova Scotia soil and received the title in society. How was this done?
Soil was brought from New Scotland (Nova Scotia in Latin) and put in an area of Edinburgh Castle, which was then declared Nova Scotia territory. It was here “knichts and gentlemen of cheife respect for the birth, place, or fortounes” became baronets, and they then could put Sir in front of their name.
“By the end of 1625 the first 22 Baronets of Nova Scotia were created”. The Order continued for 82 years and by 1707, 329 baronetcies were made. Many of these are honoured still today.