Clan Trotter

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Clan Trotter
Motto In Promptu (In readiness)[1]
Alexander Trotter[1]
of Mortonhall[1]
Seat Mortonhall

Clan Trotter is a Scottish clan of the Scottish Borders.[2]


Origins of the clan

The name Trotter is believed to be derived from the French word trotier which means runner or messenger.[2] There is a tradition that a brother of Lord Gifford was given the name for delivering a message with great speed to James III of Scotland.[2]

The chiefs of the clan in the Scottish Borders were the Trotters of Prentannan in Berwickshire.[2] They followed the Clan Home on many of their forays across the border.[2] A junior branch of the clan, the Trotters of Mortonhall claim to have held their lands as far back as the reign of Robert II of Scotland.[2]

15th and 16th centuries

Another junior branch of the clan were the Trotters of Catchelraw.[2] William Trotter of Catchelraw was a knight charged with keeping the peace on the Borders under royal warrants of 1437 and 1450.[2] A grandson of his was treasurer of the city of Edinburgh.[2]

A chief of the Clan Trotter was killed at the Battle of Flodden in 1513.[2]

17th century & civil war

The Trotters of Catchelraw were staunch supporters of Charles I of England and were fined for assisting James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose in 1645.[2]

A direct descendant of the Trotter killed at Flodden fought for John Graham, 1st Viscount Dundee at the Battle of Killiecrankie in 1689.[2] His grandson was the Reverend Robert Trotter who was a distinguished academic who produced a work on the life of Christ and the Apostles.[2] The work is still considered standard reading in many theology colleges.[2] Dr John Trotter continued the family's Jacobite sympathies and treated wounded Scots soldiers returning from England.[2]

19th century

Robert Trotter of Bush who died in 1807 was Postmaster General for Scotland.[2] In 1815 Thomas Trotter of Mortonhall was killed at the Battle of Waterloo serving with his squadron of Dragoons.[2]

Clan chief

Alexander Richard Trotter of Mortonhall, and 5th of Charterhall, and chief of the Name and Arms of Trotter, JP, DL.[3]

Clan profile

  • Arms: Quarterly, 1st & 4th, Argent, a fess Gules between three mullets in chief Sable and a crescent in base Azure; 2nd & 3rd, Argent, a chevron between three boars’ heads couped Sable.
  • Crest: A knight in armour Proper, holding his courser Argent caparisoned Gules.
  • Motto: In promptu (In readiness).
  • Supporters: Dexter, a lion rampant Gules, armed and langued Azure; sinister, a horse Argent maned and hoofed Or.

See also


  1. ^ a b c Clan Trotter Profile Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Way, George and Squire, Romily. Collins Scottish Clan & Family Encyclopedia. (Foreword by The Rt Hon. The Earl of Elgin KT, Convenor, The Standing Council of Scottish Chiefs). Published in 1994. Pages 464 - 465.
  3. ^

External links

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