The earliest certain record of the name was of Uchtredus filius Scotti, who lived around 1130. From him were descended the Scotts of Buccleuch and the Scotts of Balwearie.
The Scotts married well and acquired more lands and in time became one of the most powerful border clans. In fact, by the end of the fifteenth century it was said that the chief of the Scotts could easily call upon “1000 spears” to enforce his will.
In common with most Borders families, the Scotts quarrelled regularly with their neighbours and would gather for battle at Bellendean, near the head of the Borthwick Water in Roxburghshire. “A Bellendaine” is cited in ballad books of the time as their war cry, and it is also the slogan of the clan Scott upon the standard of the “Bold Buccleuch”, as they are known.
The importance of the Scott clan is shown in the splendid marriage of Anne Scott to James, Duke of Monmouth (the illegitimate son of King Charles II) and in the fact that he adopted the name Scott when the marriage was agreed. The Scott family is known today for the internationally acclaimed Buccleuch art collection housed in the three great houses of the family.