A historical perspective, drawn from the Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885.

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Lauderdale, an ancient district of Berwickshire, the western one of the three into which the county was divided. In geographical distribution, and agricultural properties, Berwickshire is all strictly divisible into simply the Lammermuirs and the Merse; the upper and the lower parts of Lauderdale belonging respectively to these just as distinctly as any other part of the county. The limits of Lauderdale, as regards the usage of calling it a distinct district, cannot be defined, and must probably be understood as including simply the basin of Leader Water and its tributaries, so far as the basin is in Berwickshire. Even anciently the limits appear to have been very different in successive periods, and to have marked fluctuations both in the kind and in the extent of the civil jurisdiction within them. Maps of Lauderdale, Merse, and Lammermuir were made by Timothy Pont in the reign of Charles I., and inserted in Blaeu's Atlas Scotiæ The author of the Caledonia -guided apparently by these maps-states the area of Lauderdale to be 105 square miles, that of Lammermuir to be 138½, and that of the Merse to be 202½ At the abolition of herditary jurisdictions the Earl of Lauderdale received the same compensation for the regality of Thirlstane as for the bailiery of Lauderdale-£500. For a notice of the noble family to whom the district gives title, see Thirlstane Castle.

An accompanying 19th C. Ordnance Survey map is available, or use the map tab to the right of this page.

Note: This text has been made available using a process of scanning and optical character recognition. Despite manual checking, some typographical errors may remain. Please remember this description dates from the 1880s; names may have changed, administrative divisions will certainly be different and there are known to be occasional errors of fact in the original text, which we have not corrected because we wish to maintain its integrity. This information is provided subject to our standard disclaimer

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