[taken from Chapter 3 Manx Worthies, A.W.Moore, 1901]
of Milntown, father of Iliam Dhone. He is more remarkable for the powerful position he attained in the island than for, as far as we know, any special ability he showed either as councillor or deemster. His position is especially referred to by James, the 7th Earl of Derby, in his diary, as follows:-" By reason of his eminence here and that [he] holdeth much of the same tenure of the straw . . . he is so observed that certainly, as I temper the matter with him in this, so shall I prevail with others "; 1 and he then proceeds to say about his family: " There be many of the Christians in this country-but they have made themselves chief here . . . by policy they are crept into the principal places of power; and they be seated round about the country, and in the heart of it; they are matched with the best families; have the best livings [that is, farms]; and must not be neglected."2
Though, after 1642, some of his sons and connexions 3 were concerned in plots against the Stanleys, he appears, outwardly at least, to have remained on good terms with Lord Derby, and that he was trusted by him at this time is shown by the fact. that he held the post of Governor of Peel Castle. He was appointed deemster when only 26, and held that office till his death, a period of 51 years. During the last six years, however, his son, John, acted as his deputy. This has been the longest nominal though not actual, tenure of office as deemster.4 Between 1631 and 1636, he acted as Deputy-Governor of the island.
1 Manx Soc., Vol. III., pp. 47 8.
2 ibib p 49-50
3 William Christian and Deemster John Christian (sons), also Edmund
4 the longest actual tenure has been that of 50 years, in our own time, by the universally respected Sir William Leece Drinkwater